Adii of WooThemes mentioned a site I never heard of yesterday on Twitter called ThemeWars. The idea behind the site is that any blogger can submit an entry into their weekly design war. The war is a contest which decides what type of theme will be designed. Once that’s established, the top two designs as voted by the community will be sold in their theme store. The winning designer receives a percentage cut of their theme. Winning designers also become permanently invited to produce themes for ThemeWars in which they can continue to share in the profits.
One important thing worth noting right off the bat is that all of the themes sold through the store are GPL.
I thought this was a great idea until Carl of RocketGenius mentioned the fact that both designs which are part of the theme war are sold on the site. Once I realized this fact, the coolness factor quickly disappeared. It seems to me that the only thing I’m voting for is in deciding which theme author will receive a cut of the profits which in my opinion is dumb. I’d like for there to be an actual theme war where the vote actually means something. Only winners should be able to get into the store while also sharing in the profits. The loser gets to go home and try again. However, theme wars makes more money selling both designs regardless of the voting which I guess explains why the votes mean nothing.
I think ThemeWars had a good thing going but because of the voting and what it stands for, I think the entire site is ruined. However, if you’re a designer, this site definitely has some perks aimed at you. But in the end, designers have to ask themselves, why not just release it myself and pocket every cent? I will say one thing though, the header graphic on ThemeWars.com is unique and creative. Especially the placement of the RSS icon.