WPWeekly Episode 71 – Running A Business Around WordPress

wordpressweekly1In this edition of WordPress Weekly, we have a fireside chat with Jonathan Davis, lead developer of the Shopp e-commerce plugin. We discuss what it’s like to run a business around open source software, marketing, customer service, the technicalities of the plugin and much more. If you’re a plugin author thinking about going the commercial route, this is definitely the episode for you.

Ad Copy:

This episode of WordPress Weekly is sponsored by WebDevStudios.com. WebDevStudios would like to announce the launch of their new project, WPClassroom.com! WPClassroom.com is dedicated to providing high quality professional WordPress training using the most powerful online training software powered by Cisco WebEx. Reserve your seat today at WPClassroom.com! By the way, use the coupon code wptavern when signing up and that will take off $5.00 on the first class on September 9th.

WordPress Tavern Listener Poll:

Last weeks poll question was: Which Theme Company Has The Best Word Of Mouth?

Out of a total of 155 votes, WooThemes had 104 votes, Spectacu.la had 21 votes and StudioPress 11 votes, Press75 6 votes, ThemeHybrid 5 votes, iThemes 4 votes, Gorilla Themes 2 votes, Themes By Jestro 2 votes.

This Weeks Poll Question Is: Do You Think WordPress Is Secure?

Last Weeks WordPress Trivia Question:

October 31st, 2005. What is the exact number of spams caught at that time by Akismet according to the Live Spam Zeitgeist.

WordPress Trivia Answer:

45,390

This Weeks Trivia Question

Who was the very first WordPress.com VIP member?

Announcements:

Next weeks episode of WordPress Weekly will be a round table centered around the topic of WordPress security.

WPWeekly Meta:

Next Episode: Tuesday September 15th, 2009 8P.M. EST

Subscribe To WPWeekly Via Itunes: Click here to subscribe

Length Of Episode: 57 Minutes

Download The Show: WordPressWeeklyEpisode71.mp3

Listen To Episode #71:

10 Comments


  1. It’s good to hear that Shopp is doing well and that selling a GPL plugin is an effective business model. That was an interesting point he made about the cost of Shopp being an advantage because it kept the number if users seeking support to a managable level. It seems like a sane and responsible approach that benefits the users and the developers.

    I’d hate to see every really good WordPress plugin be commercial, but it make sense for mission critical functionality like eccomerce. And it’s only fair, by it’s very nature anyone developing a site with a shopping cart should hopefully be generating revenue, so there’s no reason a bit shouldn’t flow back to the developers that enables those transactions in the first place.

    I agree that WordPress.org should have have a commercial plugin page to mirror the theme one. It’s probably not really needed as much due to the number of commercial plugins. But it’s the fair thing to do, and it sets the right tone that responsible commercial developers who share their code and support the community are recognized and get a little link love :)

    I bet after last weekend Robert Scoble, WordPress.com’s first VIP, wishes he was still getting warm towels and cold drinks from Matt and his crew…

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  2. Did get to tune in last night for the live show (finally!). Enjoyed hearing from Jonathan about his thoughts on commercial plugins and his future plans.

    My answer for the trivia question: Robert Scoble

    Matt’s comment on Scoble’s FriendFeed post about WordPress Worm:

    wolly, Robert was hosted on WordPress.com for about 4 years — he was actually the very first VIP. Although there were dozens of security updates to WordPress in that time, his blog never had a problem because it was always up-to-date. He only switched away a few months ago. – Matt Mullenweg

    http://friendfeed.com/scobleizer/cd43c6c3/i-dont-feel-safe-with-wordpress-hackers-broke-in

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  3. @JLeuze – Nope, I had to bail out shortly after the show ended. Tuesdays are workdays for me, and I still had things to do before bedtime. How long did the aftershow last?

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  4. @Kim – Yeah, I’ve got to get up early during the week too.

    I’m not sure how long they were at it, but it sounds like it went until the wee hours ;)

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  5. It lasted till about 2 am lol especially when we started talking about the security stuff and end user responsibility.

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  6. I have to say it was a really good episode and my questions got answered yay.
    Hope they were useful and interesting to others also =).
    One of these days I’ll have to stay up late and tune in live.

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  7. Poo, I forgot to tune into the show :(

    Podcast sounds good so far (I’m listening to it right now).

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  8. No 3rd yet :) : My answer for the trivia question: Robert Scoble.

    I haven’t listened to the show yet so I cant really comment on it. Sounds interesting though.

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  9. I just got around to listening to this one. I will play the Devil’s Advocate on this. If the preferred method of monetizing a plugin is from support then dose’nt that encourage less than perfect plugin’s to increase the income potential. As an end-user and I found a plugin that I had to have, I think I would rather pay for the software and get free support. Anyway, just thought I would add my 2cents worth.

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