Over the past several weeks, I have received around four dozen emails, texts, PMs, and other messages related to Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals. Last year, we ran a roundup of deals happening throughout the WordPress ecosystem. However, we are not running such a post this year. It took a solid week to compile and piece together the previous article. It was a lot of work for what was a statistical dud. Readership tends to wane around holidays as people spend more time offline and with their families.
Plus, I firmly believe that our readers would rather see what we have to say about a particular product than simply scroll through a list of offers that are already widely shared on Twitter, Facebook, and elsewhere.
As George Olaru, the CEO of Pixelgrade, wrote in I discount, you discount, we both lose, software is not a perishable food item. It is not at risk of spoilage in a few days, and if it is, we have a real problem. On the flip side, some small businesses rely on this holiday to generate a large portion of their yearly revenue. However, we should all have some serious conversations about whether it is healthy for discounted software to permeate the WordPress plugin and theme markets every time a holiday rolls around. Whatever your stance, Olaru’s piece is worth reading and thinking on.
It is also tough to receive into the holiday spirit this year. With Covid-19, the Black Friday markets have changed, which is probably not a bad thing on the whole — do we all really need to pile into stores to fight over the latest gadgets? The pandemic has also meant that families have had to make hard decisions about gatherings. The Tadlock family decided to cancel our pre-Thanksgiving/reunion we have in early November. We host it early because the doctors and nurses in the family often have to work on the holiday, and they agreed that a large gathering was not ideal. Fortunately, we live in an era where we can connect with each other in moments and from vast distances.
No, it did not feel right to do a sales roundup this year. Instead, I wanted to receive back to the root of the Thanksgiving holiday, at least what I was taught the holiday was supposed to be about.
While tomorrow’s Thanksgiving holiday is an American tradition, I am certain our readers abroad can join in the celebration. It is a day of giving thanks for the blessings of the previous year. In times past, this has often meant being thankful for the harvest and having food on the table. Today, it still means the same to many. However, the holiday is all about counting our blessings, and that is something we should all take time to do.
This year, the thing I am most thankful for is the community, the people who all band together to create the most used CMS on the web, the people who evangelize the platform, and the people who continually take part in this grand experiment.
One of the things I attempt to do when writing is to share exciting things happening in our little corner of the world. Yes, I am often critical too. This is because I want to see people and companies strive to create better themes, plugins, and other products. For those times when I stretch to hyperbole or perhaps lean toward the negative, know that it comes from a place that is hoping for your success. It is hard to balance at times, but I am thankful that I can do this day in and day out.
After writing for the Tavern for over a year now, I feel like I am on a wondrous journey with so many of you. Whether it is a random message just to say hello or a ping about a new product, I look forward to seeing it all.
These human-to-human connections were not something I was expecting as I began this gig. Thank you to everyone who has made that possible.
Let’s all take a day and share some of the WordPress-related things we are thankful for this year — we can all save our block editor criticisms for tomorrow. It has been a rough year. We could all really use some positivity right now.
What are you thankful for?