this is NOT acceptable – if i bought this plugin HERE, then i expect support HERE
Sorry, but that IS absolutely acceptable! The current comment system here is a mess, to say the least—it’s a burden for authors and customers alike. You cannot post code snippets in a good way (if it works at all), you cannot search and you have to browse through tens or hundreds of pages, you cannot edit your comment after a short time, and so on and on…
For authors this system sucks big time and that’s one of many reasons to offer suppor on their own way: with a professional system like Ticksy, HelpScout, a forum, ZenDesk or similar.
As a customer I am ALWAYS happy if an author is offering support in professional way via E-Mail or on his own system being that a ticket system or a forum.
It seems a common misconception to think that if a theme is “WPML compatible” you’re done with internationalization (i18n). That is not true!
Internationalization of WordPress themes and plugins is much more than adding a little “wpml-config.xml” file to your theme. The foundation of any i18n ready theme & plugin is the proper usage of all existing WordPress (and Gettext) i18n functions and standards. That includes among other stuff: - unified textdomain - EVERY string for frontend and backend is translateable - proper usage of WP’s i18n functions (less markup as possoble etc.) - no constant or variable as textdomain - as much as possible every error message is also translateable
There are dozens of other so-called “multilingual plugins”, WPML may be popular but is not the only one!
Don’t only prepare for one plugin on the market—this strategy may lock you in long-time. Make your themes and plugins translateable following the standards and you will be on the safe side!
The above said, include WPML in your i18n strategy, but don’t forget to see the full picture!
The problem I have with lots of themes here on ThemeForest is not the design or the creativity! My problem is that: all is bundled with so-called “premium” plugins (real plugins) or integrated plugins (seems like part of theme but in reality is a plugin!). I don’t like that and it is absolutely not useful. It makes your coding/ updating/ supporting of themes a horrible experience and also for the end user.
I have “repaired” quite a few sites from “buyers” that bought a “complete website solution” with their $45 theme from HERE. At least they thought of. In the end they had to pay me to break up those crazy bundles…
The competetion here seemed to be about who has the biggest, fastest, most colorful and most crazy theme-plugin-suite-bundle. I am not dumb or crazy: you just cannot get 3, 5 or 10 premium plugins (each worth at least $20 – $50), plus a design (= theme) for about $45 – $60. There’s no “complete website solution” for about $60 out there. That’s just a big fat lie! That was, is and will be!
And because buyers/users were “trained” in this whole thing I described above lots of them seem to believe this lie in the end…
With the announcement from today, Envato just took care to stop that behavior. I hope that now the competition here will be about design, creativity and originality again and not about bundling of stuff.
A special note to theme authors: free your mind from the logic that plugins have to be tied with themes. Both can go hand in hand if needed (and if the use case requires it) but at any time it should be possible to de-activate either the plugin or the theme and have NO set of hundreds of errors or fully crashed sites…
I do plugin development for Genesis Framework quite heavily and that is an example of a stripped down framework. Any extra features are plugins – paid or free, official or from the community, or any general WordPress plugin. And this is absolutely NO limit on the design front. I know that many of you may dislike Genesis – you are free to However, what I want to say, is the logic behind that: make your themes/ framework lightweight, concentrate on design and new design/ layout structure ideas rather then on LOTS of functionality in a theme. Give plugin authors and “customizers”/ freelancers out there an API so they can hook in anywhere at any time. Breathe hooks and filters. Embrace the real WordPress standards.
The more functionality you are packing in your theme the more you are trying to say to me: I may be not that good at theme development because I have to “whitewash” with feature bloat and/ or bundled plugins.
The TGMPA Plugin Activation class was written out of the need to have a basic dependency system for themes -> plugins or plugins -> plugins. If you ever heard of a Linux package system and how that works, it’s about exactly that! The TGMPA class is like a first fruit in that direction. I hope that one day we have more stuff like that, so that it will be even easier as today to declare dependencies between themes and plugins or plugins and plugins.
My final note: Free from feature bloat, understand what themes and plugins in WordPress are intended for and don’t stop on delivering awesome designs here! I see it regularly: authors that just got it and don’t limit on the creativitiy front! Their themes are among the very best here, because I won’t get distracted by sliders, shortcodes or other bundled stuff!
@imangm: I know what’s going on, especially with Sliders here from CodeCanyon in ThemeForest themes or your example with the “Visual Composer”.
Only if it is allowed it doesn’t mean it is good practice or a real benefit in the end.
IMHO, a theme should primarily do DESIGN, layout – the presentation. Plugins in WordPress are all about functionality. “Visual Composer” may seem a bit like a crossover thing but it was right way from its developer to make it available as a plugin because it could be reused with almost any theme. So there’s no need to bundle it in the end. Bundling makes it look to the end user like: I get more for my money. But that is not the case. There could be (and will be!) support issues where a plugin developer might not support bundled versions of his plugin—also, the plugin developer was not payed for that.
If a theme might sell 3,000 units and comes bundled with a plugin from CodeCanyon how in the world want the plugin author support it if he gets then, let’s say, 1,000 support requests more? An Extended license for CodeCanyon plugins is “only” 5 times of the regular price. So that would mean 5 units sold and not 1,000 (as are support requests in our example). So this is NO benefit for the plugin developer in the long run. Then, in that example the customer/ end user may be left with no support. And if support is seriously needed the customer could only re-buy the plugin from the original author just to get support. So as a result the customer still has to pay for the theme AND the plugin to get full support for both (and just add Updates topic to the list…).
The prices here are really a steal, for themes and also plugins. The Visual Composer plugin could be sold for, let’s say $80 or even $99 and it still would be a top offer for what you get as value! I know what I am talking about because I bought the Visual Composer plugin and hundreds of other premium plugins from various developers/ shops/ marketplaces!!!
This whole thing as it is or was here is like: every (theme) author tries to make higher, faster, bigger bundles to just make a few quick bucks and “compete” with other authors.
Where would this all end one day?
I understand new users/ beginners that may be very pleased at first sight with such “bundles”. But it’s just the wrong way of doing it. Look at the whole picture and just leave out CodeCanyon: take any other free or premium plugin from the WordPress ecosystem, for example Gravity Forms. Gravity Forms needs a license key for various things in the plugin and other services from its devs. Re-distributing of the plugin and license key is not allowed! For good reasons!
Also with free plugins, let’s say from WordPress.org: I currently have 32 free plugins available from there. I don’t want any ThemeForest author bundle any of these with his/her theme! And I won’t support requests from theme users with these plugins, I would send all these users back to the theme author! Just because I WILL NOT buy any of these themes (to check what’s going on) and I don’t know if the theme author has made changes to my original plugins. Period.
It’s a never ending story! It just needs to stop because it’s bad practice.
Also, it would be very welcomed if theme authors would do KISS – keep it simple stupid! A few authors on TF do that and they have one of the very best themes of the whole marketplace. They also outsource plugins and drop feature bloat. That’s the way themes begin to rock! Then the customer can decide which plugin may add additional functionality if ever needed.
A theme freed from feature bloat and stupid bundles is like coming home: coming back to where it all began and where really awesome designs and new ideas have the room to bloom and live!
What do you mean by bundling premium plugins with theme? My theme is almost ready and I’m planning to include revolution slider and visual composer with my theme. Is this the new problem? Should I avoid this to be safe from sudden rejections or removals? Most of the themeforest’s themes are using such plugins… You mean 90% of the themes will be removed soon?? What’s going on?
Why would you do that? Why on earth do you want to bundle the “Visual Composer” plugin? Just make your theme play nice with it and recommend it but don’t bundle it! Let the plugin author give full support & updates etc. Concentrate on your theme, make it really rock!
Same for sliders: make your theme compatible with this specific sliders – or better: with the most popular slider plugins around. Let your customers decice which they want to use! (Or if any at all…)
Don’t distribute other people’s plugins or promote in their name. It WON’T make your theme any better for me. If your theme is well crafted & developed a 45 or 55 Dollar price is still like a steal and doesn’t need any bundled plugins…
Bundling premium plugins with themes is complete Madness! The people getting screwed are the customers and the premium plugin authors, just so the theme author can make a “quick buck”.
That is exactly the point! Theme authors bundling plugins will have LOTS of problems especially in support with/for these plugins. As I said a disservice to customers! Also, in the perspective of updates to such plugins, customers have to wait for the theme author to react, instead of getting such an update a lot faster directly from the plugin author – and with full support.
I really don’t care if a lot of themes here get temporarily disabled until their authors learn the basics.
If your theme really rocks it doesn’t need any bundled plugins to increase its value!
Making themes compatible to plugins or recommend plugins is a whole lot different topic!!!
This practice with bundling themes with various plugins should stop! NOW! It’s a disservice to buyers/ end users, especially in terms of support and license keys (think SaaS!).
Themes should be themes and not plugin bundles. Also, who needs 5 slider plugins for a theme? For example: a Gravity Forms developer license is about 200 $, distributing of this plugin is not allowed, also distributing of the license key is not allowed. What’s allowed is the unlimited USAGE of it. Themes here on ThemeForest are mostly about 55$. So, how in the world will theme author provide all these updates (and Gravity Forms has a good practice of often updates!) and the support (and yes, that is needed for a lot of reasons!).
I rather want my plugin support from the original developer (or team), not from a third-party source.
Again, themes should be themes, not bundles of a dozen plugins. This is bad practice and should be stopped!
Of course, it was not good idea to remove the themes WITHOUT any notice to the theme author.
However, it was a good and welcome move by Envato to remove such themes as they are doing a disservice to the customer/buyer, the end user, and also to the theme author in the long run! Bundling Gravity Forms is really a bad idea because you’ll need their license key for nearly anything, and distributing it is disallowed – for good reasons!
Themes should be themes and not bundles of plugins! Buying a theme with a dozen plugins and assuming you’ll get the full support for these various plugins from that theme author (and not the plugin developers) is the disservice to the buyer/ end user.
Also, in the end who needs themes with 5 slider plugins?
C’mon, stop the lamenting, themes should be themes – and there are awesome themes/ designs here – and plugins should be plugins!
I am with Envato on this and eagerly awaiting their post about these issues…! I hope we see even better themes here, that are REAL themes, not plugin bundles!
Regarding CodeCanyon Marketplace the following licenses are needed: 1) From perspective of a buyer: Developer License, allowing the buyer to use it on client projects (maybe splitted into sections: 2 domains, 5 domains, unlimited…) Also ALL Licenses on CodeCanyon need to be overseen and maybe updated for the use with WordPress Multisite installations!
2) From perspective of a CC author: - Also a Developer license, see above! - A special “ThemeForest Usage License” for ThemeForest authors, with a special price! - Choose different Licenses per item, so Regular, Extended, Developer etc. - Bump the price of Extended License! - Implement a system that lets author decide whether or not the item could be used within in Multisite installations, regarding the license price especially!
Regarding ThemeForest Marketplace the following licenses/ changes are needed: —> nearly the same as above applies! —> especially usage for WordPress Multisite installs and multi-domain and/or client usage is neccessary —> a Developer License for (WP) Themes would be nice but for plugins it’s even more needed!
Applying these changes would BENEFIT ALL INVOLVED, Envato, all authors plus all buyers/users!
Also, reading your license updates, license landing page plus the FAQs really confused me!!! Still, after reading this stuff multiple times it’s not clear most of the times what’s allowed in real life and what’s not.
Especially for all things WordPress: REAL LIFE USAGE EXAMPLES for all Licenses regarding WordPress items on ThemeForest and CodeCanyon would HELP all authors & users/buyers involved. In the current state it always leads to long discussions/ debates because the essential things are unclear to lots of (new) authors plus users/buyers!
You could use this free plugin for that: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/fg-joomla-to-wordpress/ – it also has a pro version with special features for “K2” – see plugin description there.