UserPress: A New Wiki Plugin for WordPress, BuddyPress and bbPress

wiki

UserPress is a new free plugin that aims to be the ultimate wiki solution for WordPress. It provides a comprehensive set of user-friendly features that will transform your site into a collaborative hub for creating wiki content.

Richard Smith, the plugin’s author, created UserPress to provide functionality that he believes is often missing from existing wiki plugins. “Over the years, I have been frustrated by the lack of a proper wiki plugin for WordPress,” he said. “So I decided to build one.”

Front-end Editing for Wiki Content

UserPress allows wiki users to create and edit content on the frontend of the site. Wiki participation privileges are based on user capabilities and can be manually set for each wiki.

userpress

When creating new content, users will see a list of similar existing pages, which helps to prevent collaborators from overlapping on content. If a user accesses a non-existent wiki page, the plugin will prompt him to create a new page.

UserPress includes multiple options for sorting and managing wiki articles, including recently added, recently edited, recently discussed and alphabetical order. The plugin also offers an array of wiki-related widgets: search, new wikis, popular wikis, recent wikis, categories and tags, a tag cloud, and a subscription button.

Wiki Version Control and Moderation

One of UserPress’ more useful features is the built-in basic version control. The plugin allows users to compare changes to documents (diff) and gives the option for editors to attach a note with each revision.

revisions

UserPress allows wiki participants to moderate content using a set of customizable flags. For example, one might flag an article for poor attribution, readability or spam.

Subscription for bbPress and BuddyPress

The subscription feature allows users to monitor articles to keep track of comments and updates. However, subscription is only available for users on sites where bbPress and/or BuddyPress are activated. It fits in seamlessly with the user profile menu.

Subscription management
Subscription management

Members can navigate to the subscriptions panel to find out what’s new and to manage current active subscriptions.

Default Wiki Theme

The design for the default wiki theme is based on Zurb’s Foundation Framework. UserPress includes a responsive default theme (“UserTheme”) that is automatically installed and activated once the plugin has been activated. However, the plugin will work with any WordPress theme. The automatic activation of the theme upon installation of the plugin helps users to discover that there is a theme available, but it might be disturbing if the administrator is not expecting it.

If you’re looking for a wiki plugin that works well on its own and integrates nicely with bbPress and BuddyPress, UserPress is a solid option. Its feature set is geared towards making collaboration more efficient and productive for wiki participants. Download the plugin from WordPress.org or grab the latest from the UserPress homepage.

18 Comments


    1. Yeah, there has been an interest in different Wiki plugins for WordPress over the years but I haven’t come across one that nails it. Based on the early reviews, looks like activating the bundled theme when the plugin is activated is causing users to freak out, thinking it destroyed their site :(

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      1. That seems like a setting that should be optional. I think that would help people who don’t understand how theme work. Plus, it is quite jarring to have your theme changed just because you activated a plugin. I don’t think anybody expects that.

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      2. Yes. I think the last thing people are expecting when they activate a plugin is to see their entire site change designs, especially when they activated a plugin, not a theme.

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    2. it appears the plugin should have kept its BETA tag for a while longer

      I followed their link to their own pages, where we are offered to see it in action. That is, we will see it once the content is created … which we see is to be the Documentation.

      It might look BETA at their end (the tag is still in their pages) … but I’ll go put it on my Dev site and see how it looks from this end.

      I might be interested in their theme, too, on it’s own merits … but didn’t we just have a dust-up over Themes installing their own Plugins?

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  1. Whoa. Installed on my existing, populated Localhost dev-site.

    Disregarding that the plugin installs a theme, which is also packing another plugin, it’s interesting.

    On an existing site, and without Buddypress or bbPress, it’s quite rough-hewn, but is clearly striking out in new & intriguing directions.

    It seems almost like an ‘inside job’ WordPress fork.
    ===

    In Admin, there is a new Menu-entry: Wikis. Make new Wiki; wiki Categories; wiki Tags, Flags & Settings.

    I then selected my normal theme, with the UserPress plugin still activated. At first, it appeared to fail, but when I changed pages in Admin, it had switched.

    The beloved/bemoaned Admin Bar vanished under UserPress, and returned with my theme.

    The whole ‘project’ (it hardly seems right to call it a plugin) is too much of a hairball for my tastes, but it looks it will come apart fairly readily … and in fact works, when only partly intact.

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    1. The whole ‘project’ (it hardly seems right to call it a plugin) is too much of a hairball for my tastes, but it looks it will come apart fairly readily … and in fact works, when only partly intact.

      Hi, I’m the creator of UserPress. Would you mind elaborating on your issues wit the plugin? And yes, it is a plugin…that includes a theme that’s optimized for the plugin’s functionality. But you can use any theme that you desire. (I honestly don’t understand why people are so confused by this. But I will be remove auto-activation in the next version.)

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      1. Would you mind elaborating on your issues wit the plugin?

        Firstly, my leading and dominant reactions to UserPress are positive. It is interesting & intriguing, to me.

        That doesn’t mean there won’t be concerns, or even negatives. Or, that we should ignore them, if they arise. WordPress itself is showing signs of becoming a hairball.

        I honestly don’t understand why people are so confused [that the UserPress plugin includes its own theme].

        Because they didn’t expect a plugin to be a theme? They’ve never before seen a plugin install its own theme? Then override the blog-owner’s theme-selection, and reset it the plugin’s?

        And, it turns out, the bundled theme isn’t even necessary for the plugin to work right. So why create this issue?

        I also quickly fired up phpMyAdmin and took a look in the database, and was surprised to find nothing that seemed to belong to UserPress. (Tho, admittedly, my database is a hairball…) So the plugin does not create any new tables to support the wiki functionality? That’s another intriguing surprise.

        I tried to find a citation, without success, for a recent communique from WP HQ, clarifying that themes should not bundle plugins. There are reasons why developers want to do this, and unfortunately there are reasons why it can lead to exposure/exploit.

        UserPress installs a theme of its own, and while the novelty might mean there is no rule about it, that the theme then wants the plugin bbPress, and loads it into the directory (and is expecting BuddyPress, too), is at best skirting the bundling-rule.

        From a developer’s point of view, there are advantages & attractions to bundling up everything that would seem to be nice. From where the end-user stands, and in the WP head office, these choices can cause confusion and consternation.

        Fortunately for your product, as you say, andas I deliberately tested & tried, it appears that the bundling choices are not essential to the proper functioning of the proposed Wiki. The bundling is just a ‘developer convenience’, evidently, and the product can be repackaged in a different manner.

        I still have UserPress installed on my development site, and look forward to watching it evolve.

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      2. re: “But you can use any theme that you desire.”

        Unfortunately thats not the case in my case. I tested all themes incl. the default ones.
        Mostly the layout is breaking apart, the search field is spoiled and the wiki-sidebar is not showing up.
        If I use the bundled theme, then the layout is ok.

        It’s a pity. Else it looks very promising, rich of functions and has good user control.

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  2. pity that the entire userpress website is down now…

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      1. The content on UserPress.org is under a Creative Commons license. The UserPress plugin itself is GPL.

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      2. Sorry for the downtime. The server was crashing constantly due to massive spam and DDoS attacks. It’s a long story and I’ll be sharing details later on userpress.org

        If anyone has any questions or comments please get in touch with me http://www.userpress.org/contact/

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  3. Im sure it said it was free at the top of this article and now its $99?

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    1. too expensive……by the way, wp wiki by wpmu is $19.

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