I commented on a post over at WPTavern last night, about the quite-delayed release of version 3.6 and it got me thinking about who should decide what features get included in the next version of WordPress.
WordPress 3.6, for those of you who don’t know, was supposed to be released at the end of April. It’s now nearing the end of June, with no mention of when we can actually expect to see 3.6.
As some of you may recall, a Post Formats UI update was supposed to be the flagship feature of WordPress 3.6. It even led as the most desirable feature in our own poll of the most anticipated features in 3.6.
On May 29th, after much whimpering from the community, Mark Jaquith finally announced that the planned Post Formats UI upgrade would not be included in core and would instead be released as a plugin.
I don’t think the debate here is whether or not the post formats UI refresh was ready for the primetime (though, in my opinion, it should absolutely be included in core, for the sake of standardisation), but it’s why we even got to this point?
You’ll have to forgive my ignorance here, because I am not close enough to the development process to know how it works, but it seems as though the public, who are the end users should have some input as to what features they’d most like to see in the next iteration of WordPress.
It’s hard not to think that the development team (whom I admire and love dearly by the way) got a little too far into their box and decided on a feature set that they thought the community would like without actually consulting them and marched on with countless hours of development, only to have large swathes of people turn their noses up when they saw it coming together.
I applaud Mark for stepping out and making the hard decision to do a U-turn and remove the Post Formats UI refresh from core. After all, the idea of seeing the fruits of your labour smashed in front of your eyes is disheartening, but he heard and he listened and he took action.
And that brings us to here. Near the end of June, without version 3.6 and without its flagship feature. So what do you think about how the features for WordPress are selected? Would you like to have more of a say? Or do the development team generally get it right and this is just an anomaly?