WordCamp Europe 2016 had 500 attendees sign up for contributor day, which was held on Sunday at the University of Vienna. For the first time ever, the event hosted a plugin review workshop led by Mika Epstein where attendees learned about how the repository and review system works.
Epstein announced a new #pluginreview channel on WordPress Slack for discussing plugin reviews. The current plugin review team includes just a handful of people but Epstein said that they will be expanding with new members in the near future. She plans to post some plugins for future reviewers to download and discuss as a group.
Epstein emphasized that the new channel is not for checking in on reviewers to find out when submitted plugins will be approved. Security issues should still be forwarded privately to email@example.com.
Epstein posted a few links for those who want to get started learning how to review plugins, including the official plugin directory guidelines, the Mark Jaquith Plugin Directory Slurper, and the Plugin Check plugin (which could use some repairs).
Adding more members to the team should help lighten the load for those who have been handling the review process. It will also put more eyes on the directory for security issues and other undesirable practices such as phoning home and license checks that cripple software. The plugin review team does not yet have an ETA for when new members will be added, but applications will be open in the near future.
“We need the UX for the repository revamp to be usable and acceptable first,” Epstein said. “Until then, we’re on that lousy, single-threaded, bbPress setup. Once that changes, the plan is to start letting people apply (and yes, we will post requirements for that) and adding them with access to review privately. Think of it as moderated reviews.”
If you want to learn more about how the WordPress.org Plugin Directory works, check out Jeff Chandler’s recent interview with Mika Epstein on WPWeekly.