Support » Plugin: Display Widgets » How do we get updates and support with new owner?

  • Resolved Angietops7

    (@angietops7)


    I see this widget was bought out, and it’s been removed from wordpress.com. How do we continue to get updates and support? Do we need to download a different version from the new owner? Please advise.

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 21 total)
  • Angietops7

    (@angietops7)

    Thanks for your response David. I am at version 2.5 – I was going to do the update today so luckily I didn’t do it.

    Do you know the new owners? It’s strange that they bought it but are not providing support.

    Can you tell me what a “forked” version is? Are you saying that your other version will do all of the same things?

    It would be a huge problem to have to replace the plugin. I’m hoping the display widgets plugin will be fixed and put back. I’m in the middle of developing a new site that I used display widgets for, and changing it would mean so much work!

    Should I check back here again to see what happens with the plugin? If so, when would you say it may be decided?

    Thanks so much.

    rubinstein

    (@rubinstein)

    This article explains a software fork:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fork_(software_development)

    Basically, he took the source code and made some changes/bug fixes.

    @angietops7

    I don’t know who the new developer of the Display Widgets plugin is, they apparently bought** the plugin from the original developer in May 2017, registered a new WordPress profile (https://wordpress.org/support/users/displaywidget/) in May 2017 and in June released an update (v2.6) which added the geolocation widget code. WordPress removed the Display Widgets plugin from the plugin repository a few days ago and the new developer hasn’t posted anything here since: that’s all I know about the new developer.

    ** You can’t actually buy a WordPress plugin that’s in the plugin repository. Everything uploaded to the plugin repository is released under a GPL license, which means anyone can use the code for anything they like (personal use, sell it, give it away free…) as long as they release it with a GPL license. That means anyone could do what I’ve done, fork the code (make a copy), fix the bugs, add new features and release it as a new plugin (which has to be released with a GPL license so others can do the same). So what the new developer has bought is the login details to the WordPress support forum etc… for the Display Widgets plugin so they can update the original code and take the plugin development in whatever direction they choose without having to make a fork and build a new user base (they in effect bought you!).

    I personally wouldn’t use the 2.6 update, it’s bloated and will slow your site down and there’s some weird code in the geolocation widget that COULD (I’m not sure how it works) be tracking your visitors IP addresses. There’s a couple of callbacks in the code to a freshly registered domain http://w-p.io/ and with the geolocation widget it COULD be gathering valuable user data from your site! Imagine the value of user data from over 200,000 WordPress sites, you can run a business from that data. I’m NOT saying this is the case, I’m saying it COULD be the case.

    Anyway, it’s OK to keep using the 2.05 version of the Display Widgets plugin, it’s had over 200,000 WordPress sites happily running v2.05 for at least 2 years with the usual small number of issues you get with plugins (minor bugs, features missing…). So you don’t have to update or switch plugins. If you stay with the 2.05 version I would suggest checking back here in a few months to see what’s happened (I suspect WordPress will eventually reinstate the plugin).

    However, if you want a version of the plugin now with the bugs fixed, more features and is under active development (I fix bugs, add new features requested by users) consider switching to the Display Widgets SEO Plus Plugin https://wordpress.org/plugins/display-widgets-seo-plus/ which will use your current Display Widget options: see https://wordpress.org/support/topic/upgrading-the-display-widgets-plugin-to-the-display-widgets-seo-plus-plugin/ to understand how easy it is to switch (it would take a minute or two to switch).

    David

    Barn2Media

    (@barn2media)

    Thanks for the link to the old version. The new version didn’t work on my site so I had to roll back. Sounds dodgy!

    Yes unfortunately there was a huge bug with one of the widgets we activated. Basically we had a few requests off certain people asking if they could show certain widgets to certain countries.

    In the last update it was checking the ip of EVERY VISITOR with no option to turn off the feature. Now this is fixed and it is deactivated by default, and can be activated by a click of a button :).

    Hope you like it 🙂 Sorry for any inconvenience.

    In terms of updating we will be updating it way more often then the previous owner, before we came along the last time it was updated was 2 years ago. Yes we had a minor kink but its all resolved now.

    I would suggest that geo-location could be a paid feature and a way to monetize the plugin via the freemium model, instead of bloating out the free plugin with a huge feature that most people don’t need.

    @barn2media and all,

    please note that version 2.6.1 is not bloated anymore. Monetizing a plugin is always tricky, thank you for suggesting this idea. I believe people will like this feature to be able to hide/show certain widgets by Country. I am planning to add more features and eventually create hide/show “profiles” in a separate admin screen. This way you don’t have to set all the checkbox for EVERY SINGLE widget you add to your sidebars, but you can simply select a profile from a dropdown. Plus, what about hiding/showing a widget based not just on users being logged in, but also based on capabilitites associated to a given user, and so forth? As you can see, I have many ideas, and I hope the community will stick with me.

    Cheers!

    @seo-dave, I understand that you want to drive traffic to your plugin by bashing mine, but let’s try to work together instead of pointing fingers and blaming others, can we? I decided to take over this plugin simply because I used for a while, and seeing that the original developer was not updating it anymore made me think about the potential that this feature could have, and how it could be improved. I did it with no short term plan to make any money, it’s basically just the same passion that drives thousands of developers around the world to contribute to the open source community. So, with this in mind, can we collaborate and work together on improving the plugin instead of doing what you’re doing? Thank you!

    Thanks for the update. ‘Profiles’ is a good idea as it can be fiddly to manage the visibility of multiple widgets. We have used it on all our clients’ sites for many years and I prefer it to Jetpack Visibility, so it’s good to hear that it will continue being supported and we don’t need to replace it.

    @barn2media you’re very welcome 🙂 I just hit a small bump on the road, and I appreciate your support.

    @displaywidget

    Thanks very much for the insult!

    You paid money for the Display Widgets plugin from the original developer: few people would buy a plugin without a long term plan to recuperate their investment.

    Your 2.6 update (which added new bugs) broke multiple WordPress Plugin Repository rules (appeared you were tracking users IP addresses without their permission**: that’s valuable user data and there was no way to turn it off) resulting in WordPress deleting the Display Widgets plugin.

    You’ve been dark (not answering support requests, no posts here at all) for about a week, no one knew what would happen to this plugin and I was the only person around offering any support (would it have been better to be quiet?). IF my intention was to drive traffic to the much better Display Widgets SEO Plus Plugin I’d have actually trashed the 2.6 code a heck of a lot more than what I’ve posted.

    Users didn’t know what to do, through various support threads I recommended either downgrading to the old 2.05 version or upgrade to my version (the easier and without knowing if this plugin would be reinstated the best solution) : in some of my responses I suggested both at the same time including linking to the 2.05 zip file giving users a choice.

    ** Had a quick look at the code and the new 2.6.1 version appears to still track users IP addresses, but the site owner has to activate the feature under the plugins admin page. If the calls to http://geoip2.io/api/ (within the code of the geolocation.php file) are doing what I think they are doing you can track users by IP address gathering valuable data you can use/sell.

    I’ll ask outright, are you tracking and/or storing the data?

    David

    @displaywidget I would very much like to know if you’re tracking and/or storing data from our website with your 2.6.1 version?

    Also @displaywidget my wordfence is showing Display Widgets as removed from wordpress.org. I’m guessing that there are still problems. Will you be fixing the issues that wordfence objects to?

    @angietops7

    Apologies for the delay. Please consider that it is Independence Day weekend here in the United States, and even plugin developers deserve to spend some quality time with their families, don’t you think? I am in process of sorting things out with WordPress moderators, after having been reported for violation of the guidelines TWICE.

    Look, rest assured that even if I have been developing plugins for quite some time, I’m still learning the procedures and restrictions of having something hosted on the public WP repository. This is a thankless job, that I do in my spare time because I LOVE this plugin (I’ve been using it for my own sites for a while), and I was really sad to see it die with such a great userbase.

    I hope you will cut me some slack. Version 2.6.2 has already been committed to the repo, now it’s just a matter of having it approved and reopened by the moderators.

    I just recently understood that I could access these forums even if the plugin was “closed” to the public, so please forgive me if I did not reply right away. Note that I am trying my best to get this resolved and to get over these initial bumps with the minimal amount of damage for the community.

    Regarding your question, I was asked to add a link to my terms and conditions. The whole situation is just a misunderstanding, and I am sure it will get resolved pretty soon. In order to geolocate IP addresses, we decided to use Ip2location. However, they only offer up to 50 daily requests for each source, so you understand how that would not work for implement the functionality to hide widget by country, unless i start saving ip=country in your local database, which would make it very big.

    So I registered address to provide service for unlimited requests. I purchased ip2location Pachage for a project of mine a while ago, so I can use with no problem, as long as I do not sell similar service to ip2location.

    My hosting provider, of course, has apache log Enabled, so technically yes, they/i have access to IP addresses of those using service. But if you explain to me how I can monetize this, I will do it 🙂 because I haven’t found a way to turn an apache log into cash haha. This seems to be what other users are suggesting here, but clearly it’s not the case. Why do I collect also website URL? Because I want to run analytics on this information and see if some websites are abusing of this FREE service, and maybe implement a blacklist, or eventually do something where those who exceed a certain amount of requests will need to purchase a license directly from IP2Location. See where I’m going with this? Also because, again, what else could I do with this information? If you explain how I can make money by just collecting IP and URL, please tell me… I have a big family to feed 🙂

    As you can see, I am doing my best to collaborate with users and moderators, and I’m sorry that people think I try to take advantage of something.

    Thank you for your support and patience! Together as a community, we can do better. No need to start pointing fingers and getting upset at each other!

    @displaywidget thank you for the detailed answer. I hope all goes well for you.

    Honestly a lot of what you explained is way over my head. @seodave has had been very kind and has been interpreting what’s happening in a more simplified way so that I could understand, so @seodave, would you mind sharing your thoughts?

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 3 weeks ago by  Angietops7.
Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 21 total)
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