Since the release of Jetpack in 2011, there have been several articles highlighting the fact that it auto activates modules. George Stephanis, a member of the Jetpack development team, has consistently explained that “Jetpack only auto-activates modules that provide enhancements without affecting the front-end layout of the site.”
Earlier today, Stephanis published a post on his blog that goes into detail on how the decision is made to auto-activate a module.
We’ve spoken to many, many users who find a default feature set convenient, and resent having to make a bunch of ‘decision points’ if they had to manually activate each and every module. Good software should run well out of the box. So we’ve set up the defaults as we have. Yes, some people disagree and are vocal about not wanting anything to auto-activate. That’s okay. We try to design for the majority, with the best user experience we can provide.
I appreciate the fact that new modules will not auto-activate if they impact the front end of my site. In this instance, the decisions being made for me are a convenience, not a hassle. If you disagree with the decisions being made, there are several filters you can use to customize the Jetpack experience, including one to deactivate all modules by default.
add_filter( 'jetpack_get_default_modules', '__return_empty_array' );
I doubt his post will resonate with those who have a strong stance against auto-activating anything. As long as the development team stick to their current philosophy, I’m ok with it.
I’m in the “don’t activate anything without my knowledge” camp. That is just sound security/privacy practice in my line of work. Thanks for the add_filter recommendation–I’ll use that as standard on my sites from here on out!