The Codex entry at: Changing File Permissions seems to contain conflicting instructions:
All files should be owned by your user account on your web server, and should be writable by your username.
NOTE: For the Automatic Upgrade/Install of Plugins/Themes and WordPress Upgrades, No special permissions need to be set. All WordPress files should remain owned by your user account (the user account the httpd runs as)
Owned by my "user account" and owned by "the user account the httpd runs as" is contradictory. My user account doesn't run the httpd server, the user "nobody" does. A special restricted user, be it named nobody, www-data, etc., is used to run the web server on any properly set up Linux type server.
It *seems* like all files should be owned by the web server user, but this makes it difficult to *edit* files as your regular user via (S)FTP without doing group tricks and
allowing group write.
Could someone who knows the correct information take a couple of minutes and disambiguate the Codex? I'd be happy to do it, but I don't want to send other people on a similar wild goose chase.