Not just another WordPress vs everything else

I love that there are so many options for people who want to publish their words online these days. I was researching a topic for a blog post for the imonomy blog (I am employed by imonomy as a Content Marketing Specialist) and my colleague, Shirley Pattison (read her stuff, she writes about fascinating topics), suggested a topic: is WordPress’ dominance as a preferred publishing platform under serious threat from upcoming favourites? It was a really interesting post to work on and the result is my 4 000+ word post titled “Is WordPress Still The King Of Online Publishing?“:

Is WordPress still the king in online publishing and will it continue to hold sway in the months and years to come?

As a publisher you want to ensure that your site’s platform gives you the functionality you need to reach your audience and convey your message.

I explore some of the major options and contrasted their features with WordPress’ in this article. Each of these options; WordPress, Squarespace, Ghost, Medium and Tumblr, have strengths and weaknesses where I focused on three themes: writing tools, customization and social.

What interested me most about the topic was how each service I explored seemed to have a different emphasis, whether it was simplicity, its underlying social dynamic or something else. The post became less a “WordPress vs Everything Else” and more an exploration of which platform may work best for you given what is more important to you when you share your work.

I really like Medium but when it comes to my writing and maintaining some sort of collection that is under my control (as much as it can be, I guess), WordPress remains my preferred platform.

On a related note, it is worth reading my post on Social Media Today titled “Build Your Community Hub, Don’t Rent It” if the debate about whether to publish on your platform or a 3rd party’s platform is best for you?

Can WordPress do this?

Web•Tech•Law’s site currently runs on Squarespace which is a remarkable platform. My site is coming up for renewal this month and I’m deciding whether to renew my subscription or move my site to another platform. WordPress came to mind first even though I tend to think of it as a blog system (legacy thinking, I guess) and not the flexible CMS it really seems to be.

]1 Web•Tech•Law on SquareSpace

My current site has two blogs integrated into the site. The one is “Our work” and the other is “Our insights“. I have a number of static pages and a couple forms which feed into services like MailChimp. The Squarespace hosting platform is pretty solid and that is a win. This blog goes down from time to time and it really doesn’t attract much traffic. I host this site on Hostgator (pretty cheap and loads of capacity in my hosting package).

So what is the state of WordPress these days? Can it do what I do on Squarespace? Is it worth moving? My monthly subscription on my current package (the Professional, I believe) is $20 and an annual subscription is $192. Spending this much or more doesn’t make a move worthwhile although buying a decent WordPress theme can cost around half of this.

Any thoughts? I’m tending towards sticking with Squarespace but I am interested in alternatives if I am being silly about staying where I am.

Weird rendering issues in Firefox on my @squarespace site

I noticed some off rendering issues in Facebook when I view this site in Firefox (pretty much the last few versions), compared to Chrome. This is what this site looks like in Chrome:

Paul Jacobson's Hub - in Chrome 17 stable

This is what the site looks like in Firefox (I’m running the stable version 11):

Paul Jacobson's Hub - Firefox 11 stable

I notice 2 issues in Firefox’s rendering. The first is that the grey background visible in Chrome gives way to a black background in Firefox. The second is the horizontal scrollbar at the bottom of Firefox suggesting there is more on the page to the right of the visible area (there isn’t).

I contacted Squarespace Support about this a while ago when I was running a beta version of Firefox and received the usual response that they don’t support beta browser versions but this issue has persisted. I’m going to point them to this post when I submit a ticket but I’m curious if anyone else has any ideas about possible causes.

This site is now powered by Squarespace

Update: The site subsequently returned to WordPress. 🙂

After an aborted attempt to migrate this site from its WordPress home of many years over the weekend, I completed the migration to Squarespace yesterday. I really like Squarespace as a platform and while WordPress worked just fine for years I felt it was time for a change and to consolidate my various blogs. My plan now is to post the stuff I would otherwise have posted to my Tumblr blog to this site too and to use this site as my canonical hub on the Web down the line.

I noticed that while the site looks awesome in Chrome, Firefox doesn’t seem to like the theme or stylesheets all that much. Here is what the site looks like in Chrome:

Paul Jacobson's Hub - Chrome screenshot

And this is what it looks like in Firefox 9 beta:

Paul Jacobson's Hub - Firefox 9 screenshot

The new site feels a lot snappier to me and its apparently incredibly difficult to bring a Squarespace site down so this site should be a lot more stable and responsive than its previous version.