My Thoughts on Thesis vs WordPress

This past Tuesday, the constant bickering about Thesis vs WordPress came to a head in The Great Thesis vs WordPress Debate 2010. (I’m totally going to trademark that name, by the way. )

I won’t bore you with too many details – the gist of the argument is this:

Chris Pearson, creator of Thesis, feels that he can license his software however he wants.

Matt Mullenweg, the alpha dog behind WordPress, says “nuh uh”, since WordPress uses the GPL license, ALL themes/ frameworks / plugins / etc must also use the GPL.

Again, not to get too technical, but the GPL requires that all code be freely distributable. The creator can still charge for non “code” files, such as CSS files, images, etc…. but PHP files must be freely available for anyone to do whatever they want.

I’m no lawyer, and I didn’t read the entire GPL – I have no interest in such matters. And that’s key, right there. As a developer, I don’t have even the slightest concern for licensing disputes. They don’t matter to me, and they don’t matter to my business.

When I build a client site, I use WordPress, and Thesis. For each client site I build, I purchase a Thesis Client Site Option. It’s $40, and it’s required by DIY Themes. I gladly pay this amount, since Thesis is a great framework for me to build on.  As long as it makes sense, I will continue to do this.

End users don’t care about Thesis vs WordPress.

Not at all. They don’t care about GPL, derivatives, licensing, or any of this fuss. They care about using the best software around. They care about having a site that works well. They care about getting things done. So while there’s a Holy War going on, folks are still building sites on WordPress and Thesis. Work is still getting done, and it will continue to get done.  Folks will continue using two great products, until such a time as something better comes along.


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