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themebros says

Nvm, carry on.

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wpCanyonThemes says

This ended up as a long post so I’m hoping someone will actually read it.

Anyway, I agree with most of the new requirements.

Confusion

From what I read in this thread it seems that most authors think the complete functionality should be in the plugin. I’m quite sure that’s not what Envato had in mind. Taking the portfolio as example all you should do is register (CPT, taxonomy, custom fields) in the plugin. The front end output and the CSS and JS goes in the theme.

The problem is that after a user switches to a different theme he can’t easily access the content that was in the previous theme’s CPT. Doing with a plugin ensures they can still access it.

In case I misunderstood them and they do want everything in a plugin, they need to rethink this and get help from someone who actually knows how things works.

Envato made plugin

Let’s take it a step further, instead of creating a mess with a bunch of plugins from different authors, let’s make only one plugin.

Taking CPTs as example. Not many are used, portfolio is the most frequent, there’s also events and a couple more.

What I’m suggesting is a plugin made by Envato. Everything would be disabled by default and enabled within a theme if the theme needs it (similar to add_theme_support()).

Your theme will have a portfolio feature? No problem:

tf_add_theme_support( 'portfolio' );

What this function will do is tell the plugin to add the portfolio features to the theme. It doesn’t add anything in the front end, only the backend.

What it would do is register the CPT, custom cat and tag taxonomies and a couple usual options for a portfolio, which can be disabled like this for example:

tf_remove_theme_support ( 'portfolio-options', array( 'link', 'other_option' ) );

You want to add some more options with custom fields? Not a problem, there are some hooks available or simply add your own metabox, it’s the same as it would be if you made your own CPT.

Envato, this won’t only keep all the data accessible after a theme switch, it’ll make transition between 2 TF themes incredibly easy.

Authors, this won’t limit you in any way, you still have all the freedom to do whatever you want.

This can be done for other areas as well, such as shortcodes for example.

One plugin to rule them all.

Page Builders

Some functionality should remain in themes, one of those are page builders, something I’m quite familiar with (I hope at least one of you knows why).

Pretty much everyone has one now, if they all moved it into a plugin, there’s a 100% chance something will go wrong when the theme is switched and the new theme also has a page builder.

They all pretty much work the same way. Best case scenario, the page builder from the previous theme will be accessible in the admin but it’ll do nothing in the front end because the other one will overwrite it, not quite useful. Worst case (and quite possible) scenario, everything brakes.

And the page builders are used on a couple pages, pages that have very specific layout. If they’re switching themes they’ll want to change those pages as well.

Trust me, leave the page builders in a theme, no sane developer will do the enormous work to make it kind of compatible and do all the support that comes from that for $35 profit per sale.

Another thing, Out of 3700+ customers, not a single one asked me about the content composer after switching a theme, and half of them purchased 2+ years ago, so a lot of them switched themes.

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rvision_ says


The goal is to have a consistent, public standard so every customer has a seamless experience using our products.

Do you expect that forcing authors to move features from theme to bespoke plugins will allow end users to switch from this to this seamlessy ?

You’re trying to enforce wp.org rules on TF when TF products are anything like wp.org ones.

^ Touche.



You’re trying to enforce wp.org rules on TF when TF products are anything like wp.org ones.

Interesting distinction you make. Do you believe your customers will only use a ThemeForest theme and its bundled plugins, without any plugins from wp.org? And that plugins bought from CodeCanyon will only be used with ThemeForest themes, and not themes from wp.org?

Shouldn’t they all play as nicely together as possible?

Aren’t they playing nice right now? As far as I know, you can use CC plugins with any theme, and wp.org plugins with any theme.


If you said “AJ” you can write an accordion shortcode but here’s the rules: 1. all accordions use the same classes. 2. all accordions use the same structure, 3. all accordions use the same shortcode terms and labels then if the buyer move to a different theme we did him a favor, his shortcode will still work. That would make sense to me.

+1


Customers are really going to love having 15 different CSS files and 25 JavaScript files loading on their site due to all the theme functions being ported to plugins. That article has 25+ votes and zero stars for being ‘helpful’ which tells you what authors really think. Standards are good, but back them up and make changes slowly is all I would suggest.

^ That. +1

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Bebel says

If all these comments show one thing, it is that communication has been terrible on this topic from envato.

Change is good and this marketplace needs better standards but I am not sure that you are on the right track here.

You should introduce these new guidelines step by step over a long (long!) period and see how each of them turns out. Changing the whole game at once is simply insane.

I think the problem here is that the envato staff talking to us on this thread doesn’t really understand the reality of us authors. This is causing a lot of the confusion going on.

This is shown by the simple fact that you – originally – planned on a three week grace period for the new requirements to come into effect. Are you kidding me?! For an elite author, this seems extremely ignorant. The team responsible for this obviously never developed a theme for this marketplace.

It also seems to me that you know little about our customers. In real life we get questions like “how do I install WordPress” “how do I activate this theme” etc. Having to explain our customers that they need to install and activate “plugins” for their “website” to run is giving me a headache. I bet many don’t even know what a plugin is (yes – that’s real life)

It seems like you didn’t take into account the importance this marketplace has on many authors life. I pay most of my monthly fees through this marketplace – making such big changes and giving us a “three week grace period” causes me nightmares. Selling themes on tf is not a hobby, it’s not so I can buy me a beer once a while – it’s my main source of income! This is not facebook, people actually live from this site! You have a responsibility! You can’t just ask a few super duper top authors what they think and then change the game over night for everybody! I will move to a new place in the coming weeks, paying for it through my earnings – making such big changes has a fundamental impact on my future pans!

We are an elite author – why didn’t we get asked for our input? Why didn’t you send us a mail a few weeks back, telling us about your plans?

Taking into account the huge impact such changes have on authors – how could you not answer simple questions like wheather page builders are allowed or not??! How can you tell me that you planned this change in detail if you not have an answer to this question? Many many themes by top authors use page builders – how come you didn’t take that into account? As far as I see it it shows that you are living in a totally different world. You never created a theme for this marketplace. You don’t have to bother with our customers. You obviously don’t get enough feedback from authors.

Again, change is not bad but actually needed for this marketplace. But give us t i m e ! Talk to the community. Go step by step and see what works and what’s not. And never ever ever ever start a thread about changing hundreds of people’s businesses in three weeks just because you feel it’s a good time to do so.

Don’t be Microsoft.

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ImanGM says


For many reasons, I strongly disagree with the idea that themes should EVER be a full website solution. If you want a full website solution, you hire a developer or agency. The idea that you can adequately obtain a full website solution for $60 is crazy, assuming you need more than what a standard WP install can provide.

Yes and I respect that opinion and agree with it to a certain extent. The important part here though is not what the developer or marketplace thinks, it’s what the buyer thinks ;)

After all, they are the reason we are all here.

Luke

1+

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juanfraa says

I like the whole standards idea. However, I think envato is not thinking about a basic – and the most important – component of any kind of business, consumers. There’s no business without consumers.

When selling themes, you’ll face that customers often don’t know how to create navigation menus, for example. I don’t know where the “feedback” came from, but certainly, I assume it wasn’t users.

Forcing users to install plugins in order to have some custom and functionalities for their sites, will expel them from this marketplace. Most theme vendors around this marketplace don’t have the resources to educate their consumers to use and configure plugins in order to have a simple portfolio page. Finally, they’ll end out of TF looking for some theme company with a good amount of support resources and staff that can actually guide them. The consumer lose, the small theme developer lose, envato lose, big theme players win(in the end, outside TF). Big players have the resources, can produce good videos and material, can hire >5 support guys/gals. They’re the only one in this whole situation that can pay the price of explaining a basic customer(think of 1, 1000, 20000) what a plugin is, how to install it and configure it in order to have a simple portfolio site. What’s good about TF is that anyone with a good amount of WP knowledge can start something.

If you check the history around WordPress you’ll see it became popular when people saw that they could have their site with the “famous 5 minute install”.

“The famous 5 minute install” = average user.

By saying this, it is not that I’m against the standards. I’m really looking forward to seeing themes that actually use the jQuery version that comes packed with WordPress. But I think there’s an equilibrium between all these new guidelines and the actual state of the products in this marketplace.

Personally, and beside this whole concept, I don’t see any reason why custom post types should be outside a theme. The functionality is always given in the template and theme vendors may use their own cpt name. Having them outside the theme won’t change anything when switching themes. Unless all the universe of theme developers arrange to use the same names :S

Finally, after reading so much ego around here, remember: We’re all amateurs https://twitter.com/photomatt/status/341412320494366721

Juan of nicethemes. (TF: nicethemes_com )

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pjtops says
PHP
..
4. Tabs must be used for indentation—not spaces.

Where is this coming from – is it a WordPress standard? Because this goes against what the larger PHP community recommends as best practice, especially with the PSR standards ( https://github.com/php-fig/fig-standards/blob/master/accepted/PSR-2-coding-style-guide.md ). The problem with tabs is that different software programs and environments interpret them differently (as either 3 or 4 spaces), so it makes things harder if you are a version control for your code. Spaces are easier to work with as most code editors have an option to automatically turn tabs to spaces for you.

Otherwise, I think this is a step in the right direction for themeforest, though authors more comfortable with the design side of things, or with a large portfolio of WP themes will have the hardest time adjusting.

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bignet says

Hopefully Themeforest isn’t Drinking the Cool-Aid too much lately

... or else there might soon be rules such as “CSS selectors must be semantic”. You know, there’s a web site or organisation for backing up even the most stubborn guideline, rule or whatever.

Inline CSS

... can make A LOT OF SENSE in some cases. Cases where it would be outright SILLY to apply the CSS indirectly through classes or ID’s.

You would think that every author around here is aware of the general principles of CSS. Inline styles are a feature of CSS, not a bug.

Please remove that “inline CSS” part. It really does more harm than good.

Please let me know if you cannot think of any “valid” reasons to use inline CSS.

A+

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egemenerd says

It also seems to me that you know little about our customers. In real life we get questions like “how do I install WordPress” “how do I activate this theme” etc. Having to explain our customers that they need to install and activate “plugins” for their “website” to run is giving me a headache. I bet many don’t even know what a plugin is (yes – that’s real life)

+ 1

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bignet says

Yeah, I guess we can start selling child thems and plugins for twentyeleven

Ha ha ha …. :) agree with you ;)

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