Press This: How WordPress Can Stay the Internet Unbiased with David Wolfpaw

by | Aug 23, 2023 | Etcetera | 0 comments

Welcome to Press This, the WordPress group podcast from WMR. Each and every episode choices guests from around the group and discussions of the largest issues going via WordPress developers. The following is a transcription of the authentic recording.

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Report Pop: You’re being attentive to Press This, a WordPress Group Podcast on WMR. Each and every week we spotlight individuals of the WordPress group. I’m your host, Report Pop. I make stronger the WordPress group by means of my serve as at WP Engine, and my contributions over on TorqueMag.Io where I get to do podcasts and draw cartoons and academic motion pictures. Check that out.

You’ll be capable of subscribe to Press This on Purple Circle, iTunes, Spotify, your favorite podcasting app otherwise you’ll download episodes straight away at

Any place you look online nowadays, it seems similar to the web is consolidating into fewer and not more pillars. Now, on this podcast, we steadily focal point on ways to optimize your WordPress website or reinforce your search engine optimization score for Google. On the other hand on this episode, we’re going to easily speak about a philosophy that celebrates individuality, a realm of freedom and expression that might in all probability drawback our perceptions of the WordPress shopper enjoy.

Today, we’re going to be talking in regards to the IndieWeb, which is a host of web designers and consumers who’re growing the type of web that they’d like to see, a non corporate web. The existence of an IndieWeb, implies the existence of a dependent web. And so the ones are the fogeys which want to restore that.

So at the moment, we’re going to be speaking to David Wolfpaw, a website mechanic for FixUpFox, along with a theme and plugin developer and a contributor for the WordPress Group Crew. David, how are you doing at the moment?

David Wolfpaw: I’m doing actually smartly, yourself?

Report Pop: I’m doing great. I’d love to kick this off via merely being attentive to about how you got into WordPress.

David Wolfpaw: Utterly. I’ve been doing web building for over 20 years now, taking a look once more faster than WordPress was spherical. On the other hand I didn’t in fact get into WordPress until 2008. So I’d been spherical for about 5 years at the moment. I’d been using other CMSs. I’d been doing a large number of PHP coding, you already know, separate of using any CMS.

And fairly honestly, I merely wanted to check out out a few different tools for managing my own private website at the time. I was already working a weblog prior to that, then again I was doing working a weblog inside the approach of merely writing new pieces of content material subject matter at first of an HTML internet web page and uploading it to a server. So finding that there was a tool specifically built for that, it was gorgeous easy to get on. On the other hand I moreover found out that when I started using WordPress, I presented a large number of my own provide conduct to the WordPress space. 

So as an example, when I built my first WordPress website, I had no idea that there was a navigation gadget built into the dashboard. So I went in and edited the header.php report every time I wanted to change a link to a internet web page or something. So, you already know, no longer the whole lot is immediately obtrusive to someone who’s no longer used the software.

Report Pop: And WordPress is still your number one CMS, or do you generally tend to kind of uncover Joomla and other CMSs as smartly?

David Wolfpaw: No. WordPress is still my number one CMS. I’ve worked on some Drupal internet sites faster than at the side of each different CMSs and other non-blogging non-site builder platforms. On the other hand I continue to return to WordPress time and time all over again.

Report Pop: And let’s get into that number one subject. What’s the IndieWeb to your definition?

David Wolfpaw: Yeah, so I may first direct someone to discuss with to decide information about a wide variety of IndieWeb similar topics. There’s an entire section specifically devoted to WordPress there. 

My private definition of the IndieWeb is any web site that the shopper is building for themselves for their own purposes, that doesn’t merely indicate like private use, then again it would moreover indicate for industry use, that is disconnected from a third celebration centralized supplier. What I indicate via that is you’re building your own website or using your own social media that is hosted somewhere else, then building a Facebook internet web page to promote it what you are promoting or using Squarespace to build a website to your self. Those problems have their own uses and their own values, then again you will have such a lot a lot much less regulate over them.

Report Pop: And what are one of the most other CMSs which might be part of the IndieWeb? If Squarespace is usually a third celebration that you just’re relying on, what are one of the most CMSs to be had available in the market which might be in taste inside the IndieWeb group?

David Wolfpaw: One massive part of it, I assume one thing that I didn’t ship up is that, maximum frequently it’s problems that you just’re self-hosting. On the other hand I do wanna make a distinction that you just don’t need to be self-hosting, to do something that you just’d believe part of that or at least I don’t assume so.

On the other hand that you just’ve were given the danger to self-host. So that you must use the Ghost CMS, for example, or And you’re going to have, those corporations host it for you, then again relating to platforms like WordPress or Ghost, two that I may believe very popular in that realm, you will have the danger to self host them if you want.

And as well as you will have wisdom portability. So if I am getting began a website on, and I come to a decision later that I need to self host that website, I can accomplish that without losing any of my content material subject matter, on account of WordPress has led one of the best ways in making wisdom portability crucial relating to your content material subject matter online so I can merely take all of my content material subject matter and switch it to my own web site.

Report Pop: That rings true to me. I believe like I’ve talked to Tontek all over the place the years in regards to the IndieWeb and heard that self web internet hosting was kind of a giant part of it. I always thought it was like a requirement. On the other hand one of the best ways you merely phrased it kind of makes me assume the reason I don’t use Twitter anymore is in all probability on account of I would really like so that you can non-public my content material subject matter and switch it spherical and no longer be relying on someone. 

And even though I’m no longer web internet hosting my Mastodon instance, I would possibly simply, and the identical the explanation why I’ve my private website on WordPress instead of on each different places, I’m no longer relying on that other place in words within the match that they make a protection industry or spoil something, I can always have my website beneath my regulate, then again previous that, I moreover have the option.

I’m no longer self web internet hosting. I can’t imagine self web internet hosting my web site, then again I’ve that selection. So I imagine the data portability and all that kind of goes together. And just because I’m no longer web internet hosting my own web site doesn’t indicate that in all probability I’m no longer nevertheless following one of the most concepts which might be building philosophies of the IndieWeb.

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David Wolfpaw: Utterly, I may agree with that. One example, earlier this one year, Computerized hired Matthias, I don’t assume I’ve heard his last establish out loud, Pfefferle, and if I’m mispronouncing it, Matthias, I’m sorry. Specifically to artwork on ActivityPub similar plugins for WordPress, every for consumers, however as well as for folks on 

And I’m highlighting that as the larger, what I may believe a additional centralized company in terms of if you’re web internet hosting on, you’re certain to they’re answer making in regards to the web internet hosting platform, then again you still have that ability to do one of the most additional IndieWeb problems similar to keep up a correspondence move platform. 

The real the explanation why I need to make that distinction that I don’t assume web internet hosting is the only issue is it has a lot more in my ideas to do with what you’ll do with the problems that you just’ve were given. A superb example is that without using a third celebration tool that’s merely double posting problems, and I’m merely going to say this is then again any of the abnormal confusion happening with centralized social media at the present time, which, I’m sure all the listeners know, you’ll’t merely make an Instagram put up and have that show up as a Twitter put up as smartly.

You’ll be capable of’t put up a story on Snapchat and have that also be available for folks on Facebook. On the other hand relating to the IndieWeb, you’ll do things like that. I can use my Mastodon account to listen to track from a FunkWale instance, which is a decentralized track platform. There’s things like Peertube, so I can I make the most of my account on my Mastodon instance to the touch upon folks’s YouTube channels, for example, using Peertube, and I don’t need to take care of a separate account somewhere. 

Presently, a large number of the opposite platforms are spotted as clones, I may say, like PixelFed is what a large number of folks title an Instagram clone, which is a great review, then again I imagine it’s a lot much less, we’re merely taking a look to reproduction what this platform has carried out, and additional of a the ones are the ways folks have determined to share themselves online the tools that we’ve were given, image, video, text, audio, and there merely happens to be a centralized company that’s carried out that first.

Report Pop: You mentioned the speculation of the best way we may’ve carried out that faster than would’ve been like move posting or double posting I imagine is a better method to put it. Where if you want something to transport out to all the different places, you in truth put up it on Twitter and then you definately definately reproduction paste and likewise you put up it to Facebook or regardless of.

And I really like the best way you’re talking about this certain serve as of the IndieWeb all through the ActivityPub is the best way you don’t should double posts. You’ll be capable of merely make a choice the best way you follow problems and make a choice the best way you share problems. It’s excellent to share on Pixel Fed and someone following on Mastodon would possibly simply interact with it.

And we’re going to ship this once more into WordPress on account of ActivityPub has great integrations with WordPress and there’s a large number of crossover and a large number of conceivable for some way we’ll be able to share and statement. And do all sorts of powerful problems from WordPress while nevertheless having something that feels similar to the web everyone knows at the moment.

Just a decentralized fashion of it, and we’re gonna get once more to that after this transient spoil. So stay tuned for added with our conversation with David Wolfpaw, right kind after this.

Report Pop: Welcome once more to Press This, a WordPress group podcast. I’m your host, Report Pop. Today, I’m speaking to David Wolfpaw, a website mechanic for FixUpFox, and we’re talking in regards to the IndieWeb, and we’re gonna speak about how the IndieWeb can help keep the web abnormal and the best way WordPress can be part of that. Correct faster than the spoil, we discussed plugins which might be available and the potential for WordPress to kind of crossover with problems outdoor of WordPress.

David, let’s get into that. What sort of tools are there to help WordPress consumers join the IndieWeb?

David Wolfpaw: The first thing that I may give an explanation for is I imagine that if you’re web internet hosting your own WordPress web site, you’re already de facto part of the IndieWeb. You’re doing all the problems that I may believe core to the IndieWeb ethos. On the other hand you most likely need to go beyond that. You most likely need to speak about tactics through which you’ll interact somewhere else or that you just’ll do additional with your own web site.

The principle plugin that I may suggest is the IndieWeb plugin itself, just because it’s a very simple establish to remember. And the IndieWeb plugin doesn’t do anything on its own, this kind of lot as wrap together a large number of capacity of quite a lot of other plugins. I may review it kind of to Jetpack in that way, in that you just’re setting up one tool this is serving to you organize more than a few different tools.

So one of the most problems that the IndieWeb plugin itself provides is a method to do web mentions. So whilst you use a Webmention, you’re notifying each different website that some task has taken place to your website. So an example of the best way I make the most of the Webmention plugin on my private web site is that I can write a put up on my web site and then I can reproduction the link to that put up and I can write my own put up on Mastodon, being like, hiya, blah blah blah, I wrote this text, take a look. 

When someone responds by the use of Mastodon, that may show up on my private website. So no longer does someone have to transport to your website and move fill out the statement form down there and look ahead to your approval there. Although I’ll specify, you’ll nevertheless set comments to require approval to your web site. So it’s so a lot more straight forward method to get engagement and additional interaction to your content material subject matter, which I found out that it results in additional engagement because it’s so a lot more straight forward as a way to see a link and make an observation about it where you’ve spotted the link, as opposed to having to use it somewhere else. 

Each and every different tool that I need to highlight inside that plugin is the syndication links. Consider it kind of like canonical links. Basically, if you’re move posting to other places, you will have a method to indicate where it’s been move posted, where folks can get other copies, and vice versa, if those internet sites make stronger syndication links once more, you’ll be able to, all over again, get additional guests to your non-public web site. So one example that I make the most of right here’s Medium.

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If any person incessantly uses Medium to blog, you do be capable of put up to your non-public website, put up the identical content material subject matter to Medium, and then use syndication links to make certain that persons are going once more to your non-public website.

Report Pop: I wanted to easily kind of indicate, first off, for any person listening, the IndieWeb plugin that we’re talking about, and maximum unquestionably the others that we’re talking about, the ones are all available inside the WordPress repository,, and the IndieWeb. I love that description of it as more or less similar to the Jetpack for this, on account of this is a package deal deal of plugins, right kind?

It’s like a collection of plugins, or am I improper on that?

David Wolfpaw: So principally it lets you use that so that you can arrange other plugins. And also you’ll moreover deactivate them from there. So it’s no longer saying that Submit Sorts or IndieAuth or Micropub are built into this plugin this kind of lot as it’s a portal as a way to get them, additional readily. Nevertheless it undoubtedly does have its non-public settings and alternatives that may help you connect with other plugins.

So what I indicate to say is if you, let’s say, have the syndication links vigorous, you’ll make a choice which providers you will have organize. You’ll be capable of make a choice how it’s going to look to your website. and also you’ll organize specific API keys to use it for various internet websites, then again you’ll, you’ll move in there and say, I specifically need to activate GitHub so that if someone interacts with something by the use of GitHub, it’ll come once more to my web site.

And for developers that can be very useful depending on what kind of problem they’re working on. I indicate, there’s more than a few more than a few issues. There’s moreover a tool that’s intently integrated known as Bridgy, which is in a different way that it’s external of WordPress itself, then again it can be integrated with this plugin to allow folks to do move posting between internet websites that let it.

Report Pop: That’s cool. You mentioned thought to be considered one of my favorite use instances that I’ve professional. We haven’t talked in regards to the ActivityPub plugin however, then again I’ve got the ActivityPub plugin. And when I put up from my private blog, it’s going up to its non-public feed, more or less independent of my Mastodon feed. It’s going up as a novel feed.

And if folks move away comments on it within the match that they see it as a put up they usually’re like, oh, proper right here’s my statement, it presentations up on my blog put up. And so I’m going to my blog and there’s this natural feeling. It’s a statement to the put up and it’s so cool as a creator to easily make that ease where, you already know, someone would possibly simply put up on one place and it presentations up on each different and it merely feels seamless and natural.

It’s super cool.

David Wolfpaw: Oh, utterly. Will have to you might have been tolook at the once more end of my web site, and try posts and try the comments on posts. I would possibly simply maximum unquestionably identify the day that I activated that plugin on account of hastily there’s so much more engagement and to be clear that engagement is always there or in all probability it’s there if you’re sharing problems somewhere else, then again the problem is it’s all siloed in other places.

And I’m no longer merely saying this in words, like when I’m saying engagement, I don’t merely indicate love it’s superb for the search engine optimization and the whole lot, despite the fact that I imagine that it’s, I moreover assume that it’s superb so that you can as much as we speak about decentralization inside the IndieWeb, it’s superb so that you can centralize the conversation a bit of in a place that you just’ve were given additional regulate over. 

So all over again, you every have that decentralized facet of folks can answer on regardless of platform they’re most comfy on or any place they see it, then again you will have that ability to combine the whole lot together in a place that it’s useful to me so that you can see it all there.

Report Pop: We’re operating low on time, then again I do need to speak about two problems: rel= me and ActivityPub. First let’s get began off with, can you tell us the significance for WordPress consumers of “REL=me” on Mastodon and internet sites like that?

David Wolfpaw: Certain, so rel=me that is an function for link portions. Basically, you in all probability can put up an HTML link phase or an anchor phase, each or, and also you’ll use that to suggest that you want to test. So I can move to my Mastodon account. And put in my account, I’ve And then on my website, on my private web site, I can put a link to my Mastodon account.

Being able to put those links on every directions using that rel=me function. is a wonderful enough indicator that I’m an owner of that. So it’s a way to make sure yourself at the ones platforms. When a large number of folks moved over from Twitter, they wanted to take hold of, like, you already know, how do you test? How are folks having checkmarks in their bio when they’re no longer verified?

The answer is it doesn’t in truth artwork the identical, then again you’ll test in a additional I’m proving that I’m who I say I’m kind of way. And also you’ll do the identical with other platforms which might be built in, similar to GitHub has it built in, and I believe Tumblr does as smartly, there’s a few others.

Report Pop: Yeah. Everybody should have it built in. It’s inexcusable that they don’t.

David Wolfpaw: Smartly they need to keep their walled gardens, then again certain, I agree. Everyone should have it. 

And then the other issue is the ActivityPub extension. Will have to you check out my Be informed WordPress Webinar in regards to the IndieWeb. I didn’t in truth take care of that plugin fairly as so much on account of while it existed at the time, even though that was only some months up to now, it was no longer with regards to as utterly fledged because it’s now.

And I imagine that speaks volumes to, one, how much more artwork a developer can do when they’ve the make stronger of a large company like Automattic, and two, how much more focal point there is also on this. I’ve been on Mastodon for, you already know, just about seven years now, then again most efficient in the past one year or so for quite a lot of reasons has it in truth taken off.

Report Pop: I imagine that’s an excellent spot for us to take each different final spoil. And when we come once more, we’ll wrap up our conversation with David Wolfpaw about how we can go back to the web’s abnormal roots. So stay tuned for added after this transient spoil.

Report Pop: Welcome once more to Press This, a WordPress group podcast. I’m your host, Report Pop, and we’ve now talked in regards to the IndieWeb, its philosophy, the way you’ll practice it just about to your WordPress usage, and as well as how you utilize other social media internet sites and mix it all together. 

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And on this very last thing initially of the show, I discussed how it feels similar to the web is consolidating into fewer and not more silos. And I kind of hope to see those shaken up, then again that may or won’t happen. And it seems so instead of the early days of the web, which wasn’t with regards to abnormal. I indicate, it was surely abnormal, but it surely wasn’t merely abnormal. It was experimental. It was amusing. It was creative. It was so expressive. 

And I believe like we’ve unquestionably out of place something there. And so, David, merely kind of at the end, I wanted to concentrate on your concepts about how the IndieWeb can help keep the web abnormal and why that’s essential.

David Wolfpaw: Yeah. I’ll merely say for myself in my opinion, I’m a bingo card of intersectional different marginalized groups. I’m a queer one this is Hispanic and I’m neurodivergent and et cetera, et cetera. I can move on and on about all the more than a few issues that the centralized web does no longer take care of too kindly, is probably the most smartly mannered way I can put it. So there are a large number of places where I’ve no longer felt very welcome online, then again a large number of the IndieWeb spaces that I’ve found out have in truth been a significantly better, more fit, stronger group than I ever had on each different platform.

So I imagine that’s in truth essential because it allows people who would in all probability no longer in a different way be heard or who might be silenced on a platform on account of they might make a deadly recommendation like we shouldn’t be killing trans folks, and allow them to say that without being banned. I moreover assume it’s merely upper in case you have a bit of additional regulate over the things you’re posting and the things you share online. 

You don’t know what’s going to happen to these platforms over time. I imagine even a one year up to now, August 2022, if you asked folks what Twitter will also be like at the moment, they maximum unquestionably wouldn’t be picturing the reality of Twitter in August 2023. Because it hasn’t even been a one year since that sale was made final.

Nevertheless it undoubtedly’s totally different. I’m totally off that platform after over a decade of using it. And I nevertheless keep going with the self hosted Mastodon, and since I’ve, I merely to find it’s a better group. 

I’m making an attempt to believe a great way to put this. I imagine that the most important part of keeping up the web abnormal is that it makes it antithetical to selling. So, while I don’t believe selling itself an uncongenial issue, obviously all people are doing it for our corporations, for our non-public internet sites the parents being attentive to this maximum unquestionably do such a lot as smartly. I imagine you’ll keep in mind that the ad industry on the web at the present time is broken, and it’s been known as the original sin of the web.

I don’t disagree with that, and I imagine that having additional private regulate signifies that you don’t should rely on that fairly as so much to share what you want to share. I’m no longer the economics of posting tutorials to my website to share with others. I’m no longer taking into consideration of what collection of impressions I’m going to get on {a photograph} that I take. On account of that’s going to lead to a symbol deal or something. 

It’s going to in all probability sound a bit of counter to how a large number of folks view being online. However moreover, all persons are merely taking a look to are living our non-public lives online in some way. And it’s merely a lot more relaxing when we’ve now a bit of additional regulate and when we don’t actually really feel that we’re beholden to what someone else thinks is brand safe or appropriate.

Report Pop: I’ve to say, I’ve benefited very a lot all through the artwork that folks have carried out to make the ones IndieWeb tools and to make the web additional open, and I merely assume it’s this kind of lot upper. Problems aren’t necessarily free ’reason why they’re no longer paid for via your attention and selling and stuff like that.

There’s fairly bit additional of a learning curve, usability, every now and then it would actually really feel instead of the ones other problems. On the other hand the ones are tools that have been made that I’ve the advantage of. I’m so glad for the artwork that’s been carried out, and I utterly acknowledge that the ones tools are created via marginalized people who didn’t actually really feel safe on other spaces they usually built all the groundwork that now I merely get to go back in and, you already know, see this beautiful like Pixel Fed and Mastodon and all sorts of problems that have been built via people who needed to create a space for their own, but it surely’s so inclusive and this sort of great choices to them on account of regardless of reasons that that that they had in their philosophies.

That I merely assume the web is this kind of lot upper if we can kind of bump off the corporate web. And as WordPress consumers, we’re already halfway there. So David, I in truth acknowledge your time at the moment. Thank you this kind of lot for changing into a member people and for telling us in regards to the IndieWeb and the opposite tools which might be available.

If folks need to follow you online, where do you recommend sending them?

David Wolfpaw: Yeah. You’ll be capable of to find my private website at And then you’ll moreover to find me on Mastodon

Report Pop: Awesome. Smartly, thank you this kind of lot for changing into a member people at the moment, and because of everyone who’s listened to this episode of Press This, a WordPress Group Podcast on WMR. Now we have now various great episodes inside the can as smartly. We’re a weekly podcast. Check out remaining week’s episode with Rogier Lankhorst from In truth Simple Plugins about SSL and In truth Simple SSL.

Report Pop: Thanks for being attentive to Press This, a WordPress group podcast on WMR. Once all over again, my establish’s Report and also you’ll follow my adventures with Torque magazine over on Twitter @thetorquemag otherwise you’ll move to where we contribute tutorials and films and interviews like this every day. So take a look at out or follow us on Twitter. You’ll be capable of subscribe to Press This on Purple Circle, iTunes, Spotify, otherwise you’ll download it straight away at each week. I’m your host Doctor Smartly-liked I make stronger the WordPress group by means of my serve as at WP Engine. And I love to concentrate on individuals of the group each week on Press This.

The put up Press This: How WordPress Can Stay the Internet Unbiased with David Wolfpaw appeared first on Torque.

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