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The Best of WordPress.com in May

Hi everyone! Check out some of the new updates, designs, and insights that helped make May a great month for the WordPress.com community.

What’s new

How a Detroit Hackathon Turned into WordPress.com’s First-Ever TV Spots

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A team of developers launched new sites for small businesses in Detroit during a 48-hour Hackathon in February, an event which inspired the creation of our first-ever TV spots for WordPress.com.

Happy Birthday, WordPress!

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Celebrating 14 years since the very first release of WordPress, co-founder Matt Mullenweg says he’s “waking up every day excited about what’s coming next for us.”

Launching: All New Media Picker for Android

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“YES!! This is so awesome! I use my phone for photos so much and it was always so many steps to add pictures to the library to add to a post. Thank you!!”Nel

Register for a Free Webinar on June 6: How to Start a Successful Blog

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Whether you’re new to WordPress.com and want to learn about all of your options for publishing online, or have been blogging for a while and would like to hone your practice, consider this upcoming webinar on June 6 from 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. MST (Mountain Standard Time) / 5-6 p.m. UTC.

May the Bot Be With You: How Algorithms are Supporting Happiness at WordPress.com

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Each month, we respond to 60,000 support requests on topics ranging from plugins to mapping existing domains to WordPress.com. Recently, in looking at how machine learning and natural language processing could be useful to Happiness Engineers in responding to support questions, we discovered two places where these technologies offer value.


Designing for [X]: inclusion

Inclusive Illustrations, By Design

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Automattic partnered with independent artist and designer Alice Lee, who seamlessly integrates abstract ideas with concrete solutions. Read an interview with Alice and John Maeda that is followed by another interview with Joan Rho, the designer who led the project.


In your toolbox: inspiration + insights

“The Backfire Effect” Is the Cognitive Concept of the Moment

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There’s a good chance you came across this lovely viral Oatmeal comic in May. It’s based on a three-episode sequence from You Are Not So Smart, a popular podcast and WordPress.com site devoted to the backfire effect, the name of a detrimental cognitive phenomenon which encourages us to shut out information when it doesn’t fit into what we already think we know.

What’s New at Film School Rejects

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Film School Rejects migrated back to WordPress from Medium in May, unveiling a new site design. Publisher Neil Miller talks to WordPress Discover about the move, what’s to come, and how he and his team pick the “perfect shot.”

Quotables: “All of us from time to time would think, What am I doing here? But we all had families back home that we needed to send money to.” – Chasing the Harvest: ‘If You Want to Die, Stay at the Ranch’ (Longreads).


Now following

Antonio Santos’s new site, antoniosantos.blog, features an excellent profile of Rosemary Musachio, Chief Accessibility Officer at Ruh Global Communications.

We’re digging the fresh, mobile-friendly layout of Nick Gray’s new site, NickGray.blog.

Hang out with us on Facebook for daily news and insights to inform and inspire your writing, design, and business dreams.


That’s all for now!

What did you love about your own work in May? Comment with a link to a post you’re proud of or something new you learned about designing your site. Feeling motivated? Download the WordPress app on iOS and Android.

Filed under: Design, Diversity & Inclusion, New Features, WordPress, WordPress.com



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