Support » Plugin: Gutenberg » Gutenberg Reviewd a year later

  • Liz


    Updated Review Dec 6th 2018 (Still 1 star)

    After looking at it again pre release of 5.0 and reading a lot more about it as well as watching Word talk videos. I still don’t like it. I would still like a choice moving forward PAST 2021.
    I know we have the classic editor for now, however it has been said in numerous publications that the CE will have an EOL in Dec 2021. Which is still a forced scenario. I don’t like the new editor because it is challenging and time wasting to use.

    Early 2017 Review (1 Star)

    This is not what I expected after reading the odd positive review.
    It is not something I would choose to use.
    Please don’t make it part of core. I want to at least have a choice.

    • This topic was modified 2 years, 1 month ago by Liz. Reason: Improvements made me change my mind
    • This topic was modified 2 years, 1 month ago by Liz.
    • This topic was modified 1 year, 4 months ago by Liz.
Viewing 7 replies - 1 through 7 (of 7 total)
  • Plugin Author Tammie Lister


    Firstly, there is a plugin you can use to remove Gutenberg as a plugin: There will be even if this becomes part of core the ability to revert to the old editor. That said, the hope is the more and more work happens with Gutenberg, the less the need to ‘turn off’ will be.

    The project is still growing and developing, this is why feedback and your review (along with everyone else’s) matters.

    This is a little late to be saying but wouldn’t it have made much more sense to ask the community what we would like to see improved (as we are the ones using it) and then work on the big hitters? This idea (gutenberg) is obviously unpopular with a large portion of the community (which often happens with top down decisions). I have nothing against change if it is making something better but for the life of me I don’t know what is getting better with this.

    Obviously it’s your company so you can do as you want but if this were my product, I would want to see what my users wanted before making a huge decision like this.

    Can somebody explain what the advantages are??

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 5 months ago by daniel1009.


    Hi Tammie, You are wonderful, you made my blood pressure come back down to normal levels! thank you, thank, thank you, you made my day with the news it can be removed, knowing this leaves the door open to be able to carry on working seriously as normal, and perhaps try the new editor again periodically as it evolves. Hopefully it will evolve into something usable. I think people will be much happier and less stressed about it if when it is delivered (shipped) it is made clear that it can be removed. I barely slept last night with worry!

    I maintain 29 sites and guide my clients with their posts, knowing my clients very well over a period ranging from 8 to 10 years, I know they would also hate having to use Gutenberg. The reason it is so easy to teach and guide people to use the existing editor is because it behaves like a word doc, everybody in the general work force, in all industries that uses technology who are under the age of 75 knows how to use a word document, Microsoft made sure of it by designing it how it is designed. This is also why the existing editor it so intuitive for people on first glance. This is also why 9 of my clients ditched Wix specifically because WordPress was easier and much more intuitive regarding work flow for them. All of my clients are business owners ranging in age from 33 yrs to 80 years the 60+ aged clients learn instantly they see the editor instinctively knowing what to do.

    When I mention the words teach and guide them, I am referring to tags, categories, Paragraph headings etc, and taking guidance from the Yoast SEO plugin relating to and how they write. This equates to a 30 minute to 1 hour conversation, usually over a remote program like team viewer, and my clients are on fire and get the concepts straight away. WordPress as it is right now today on Version 4.8.2 is not rocket science. It is intuitive and self explanatory in essence. For interest sake I am 57, English and lived in Australia for 40 years.

    I have used everything from plain word docs, notepad, Adobe page mill, Dream weaver in the early stages dating back to 2001 and a hand full of other editors back in those days, prior to that Net Objects fusion way back in 1999 to help me design and build websites. I discovered WordPress in 2010 and it blew me away with how productive and time saving it is. I almost fell of my chair when I discovered themes! I couldn’t believe it. “pre-made” starting points for design and layouts! I thought all of my Christmases had been dumped on me all at once especially starting off by learning the hard way as I did from scratch with HTML alone, then came CSS, what a blessing. You know the rest or at least I assume you might if you are old enough to remember…..

    Marketing …. Lets contemplate Marketing…..
    The thing is; Has the WordPress team done enough research? Why is the new editor being introduced? I have a possible inkling from reading a few posts. It is impossible to read them all and know all the key points involved, If I am correct in my assumptions, WordPress would like to get more sign-ups and more revenue in the funnels. The Gutenberg editor is not going to cut it. What will cut it is simple step by step Videos with links in the Dashboard to access them. New videos, not the videos I saw on the WP website a few years back with no audio.

    Different markets have different learning needs, I have found in my 40 years of direct sales and marketing to groups and individuals with a broad spectrum of needs,
    as far as majority goes, younger folk find it easier to learn from Video ( with good audio) at a steady pace (not rushed) the “monkey see monkey do” method.

    Older folk like Documentation that they can print and go through step by step.
    Their brains are geared to work better that way as it’s how they have always learned.

    Middle aged group like it both ways, Video and Documentation depending on complexity of the task they need or want to learn.

    You are dealing with 3 generations in Marketing WordPress. My Mum and Dad are 79 and 80 years, They have no trouble understanding how to use WordPress and I did not teach them. They figured it out themselves by reading and doing.
    Neither of them have ever done anything online before except perhaps list something on eBay on the odd occasion, and they say writing a post with WordPress is easier!

    Younger folk are used to using Facebook and social media online, and Google docs and Microsoft products (email, word, excel) etc off line, It’s in their blood, in and their everyday work lives, they have been brought up with it. They know how to write a post and edit a document. I am sure blocks would even be alien to them as well. In fact I’m going to research this and ask a few of them who are nothing to do with the I.T or web industry, in fact I will make a point of asking a few network administrators and business owners as well.

    If it is the intention to compete with other page builders or editors, Gutenberg is not the way to go. Unless of course you are of the opinion that the global workforce needs to get used to working with blocks and editors in the design of Gutenberg which is not practical and silly. It is an ok Option to offer, but is will not win sales.

    I think reading into (imagining) other companies Awesomely good marketing is a bad way to create a new product, for instance a new editor. Take Wix for instance, the marketing is very good, strategic and works, until you buy into it to discover, lack of control, the builder is too hard to control for the novice or beginner, therefore it is ditched in favor of a different platform, a web designer’s service or WordPress. If they take on the services of the Designer or dev, a high % end up with WordPress anyway and eventually learn to use it on their own. Every client over the years has done this, even the 29 I manage and help now. They couldn’t do this before I introduced them to WordPress, which they find easier than something like Wix and it’s direct competitors.

    What WordPress needs is a brand new modern marketing campaign, not a brand new modern editor. Sure the UI could do with a bit of polish, I said polish not change of design or layout. I am sure in time the Gutenberg editor would be a welcome addition as a pre installed plugin where I could evolve into something really special for those that want to use an editor of that type.

    Give clear instruction in the dashboard with a link to a quality video about how to use it. I am sure there will be a lot of adopters.

    The top right hand side help system for instance is not clear, my 29 clients see it every day and still don’t actually see it as something they can click on to make choices about what to enable, disable or display until I point it out ( twice) often with a 3rd reminder. Colour coding works for everybody.

    Change the help items and links to a brighter colour, think about a subtle colour coded work flow using titles, not whole panels or you will upset another category of users! keep changes soft and subtle with out being intrusive and at the same time noticeable. Bright modern colours work well for all generations (not too much glare though) !!

    The White, white, white, UI of the New editor is very un welcoming, from the start, It’s quite a shock. After clicking to type the title, and it is n’t a story it’s a post or an article, The word Story is irritation because who’s going to use WP to write a book! “Start writing your story” is psychologically intimidating, putting pressure on the novice to type a long story.

    How about simply “Type your title” and “Type your content” with a sub line giving guidance to try and type a minimum of X number of words. Although This is what Yoast is great for.

    The pop up that appears is most annoying, nobody likes the earth to move under their feet. May I suggest keeping it static and adding more options to it.

    right now it is bland and uninviting with only bare bones editing for styling.
    this gives the feeling of Wix total lack of control and instantly brings about a feeling of hate. I know hate is a very strong word, however it’s a very strong and noticeable feeling, (lack of control) over ones own content.

    One of the Major reasons people ditch and leave Wix. I am lucky that I am a designer because I have experienced many people and clients leaving wix doe this exact same and only reason. They prefer working with something that works and looks like a word doc, because it is a what they recognize in every day lives in a work and social environment even by simply using email programs on and off line.

    It is the word doc and simple email general format of a UI that instantly makes a person feel at home, and instinctively know what to do.

    Where WordPress is lacking is not in a modern look or UI, although some polish and perhaps 3D and a little colour coding for work flow would help beginners and the novice know what to do next.

    The main lack is in natural human instinct, where to look for help, tutorials, and a new set of Videos that are well marketed will get people over the sign up line.

    I am not a plugin developer and am not a Theme dev either, for productivity I use Buy Themes and Plugins for myself and on behalf of my clients. I use a parent theme and then Design a Child theme to use with it according to my clients requirements and Brand. This works well for productivity and my clients.

    Psychological added Value in sales.
    When selling something to the masses and individuals, hurting them in the pocket leaves a bad taste long term. However dealing in volume with multiple small amounts of money is manageable and not so painful to individuals.

    Essence of the WordPress Ecosystem
    What we have here in the WP ecosystem is an economy in it’s own right.
    Peoples careers and livelihoods depend on WP. This is not the case with me personally however, I clearly see how this ecosystem and economy works.

    We have a free platform in WP this is the go to easy deal sweetener for getting a client or new user across the line. With a client it is easy because the Designer or Dev installs it and sets it up for them. A new person doesn’t know where or how to start. How about showing them with Videos. Make an App with a builder separate to WordPress then give mobile users a way to migrate to a fulfilling experience with a Desktop Application (The WordPress) we have now. Again Colour coding will help transitions from mobile to Desktop and vice versa.

    Crossing the democracy line!
    I used to like Jet-pack, until it crossed the line and introduced login via WordPress dot com. It was an instant deal breaker and I uninstalled it from all 29 sites. Reason being it felt like ransom! either use dot com to login or you cant use all features of Jetpack. (deal breaker) not deal maker offering encouragement to upgrade.

    My clients didn’t’ even get to see Jetpack for long, they thought the email notifications were annoying.

    Auto WordPress updates, although a good thing that I personally agree with, as its important to update WordPress asap for security at a minimum. It is one less thing I have to do.

    I feel it is important to allow Theme developers and Plugin Authors plenty of room for growth, and revenue generation, without them in large quantities, WordPress wouldn’t be the WordPress we all love, at the same time it’s important to carve in stone a healthy revenue stream for “Automatic”, everyone’s got to eat!

    What I don’t see is Gutenberg being the tool swing the deal for new revenue avenues. I see it as going in a Wix copy cat direction under the misguided assumption that Apps like Wix are successful as the be all and end all.

    Success is obviously the case for Wix and the like for a limited market, until the user grows out of it and wants more control, and develops creative skills or tendencies for themselves, or gets confused by it and reaches for designer or dev services, which has been the case with many of my clients in past years.

    People actually prefer tradition and improvements, doing things in a similar fashion to what has been adopted as “real world” which doesn’t include moving away from the obvious way of doing things in the real word.

    I think the mastermind behind the creation of Gutenberg has been watching too many Science fiction movies, and paying too much attention to the marketing successes of others and feels the need to compete.

    WordPress is a different species of it’s own. Don’t wreck it, build on it.
    Sure cosmetically modernize the UI, and add something educational to the marketing mix, with guidance, intuitive behavior and UI work flow in mind. WordPress is one of a kind. Don’t try and fix something that isn’t broken.

    What Automatic needs is a Marketing team with the sales years under their belt to Market in a new light, not change the light bulbs of something that already glows in the dark!

    This is the problem with a younger generation, many think they know how the masses feel, and many are tunnel visioned beyond markets in their own country.
    Thank goodness the majority of the younger generation are awesome people and help keep us older folk young, albeit in the wrong ways sometimes with an un realistic approach to change. Change is really not an issue, It’s the sudden Change that is a big issue. Big, Huge. Actually humongous! Gutenberg is not the type of change WordPress needs. It’s a great addition as a plugin for those that may want it.

    Don’t get me wrong, I do use a page builder for 50% of my work, but it’s nothing like Gutenberg, I use Divi by Elegant Themes with the Divi builder. Now that is something! But it’s not just the builder, or even the Theme, it’s the whole culture of Elegant Themes that brings wholesome goodness to the dinner table.
    Nobody minds paying for that kind of culture. It’s like having a special Birthday gift every day at Elegant Themes. Yes every Day!

    Yes I ditched Woo Themes for Elegant themes. There’s a lesson to be learned here.

    WordPress is a global animal that adapts to any climate, therefore a global climatic approach and depth of thought is necessary. Hello to the bigger picture!

    What works best for the USA market and way of life is not necessarily the best approach for the UK market or the Australian way of life!

    What will work globally is freedom choice. As an example, I have had a look at the many add on extensions for The Woo Commerce Theme, Wonderful extension indeed,
    Too expensive for most with more than one site to keep paying yearly. A Lower price will generate a much higher sales volume, and at the same time offer a lifetime license for a much higher price. Those that see themselves using something over and over will be happy to pay. Those that would like to buy if the price wasn’t so high would definitely buy at a lower price bracket generating thousands more in revenue. The result would be more volume, more exposure, more usage = more sales.

    The old saying goes, write good a book once, update it periodically, and sell that same book at an affordable price millions of times. Alternatively,
    Write good a book once, update it periodically, and sell that same book at a high price on the odd occasion, It’s a good book of course offering heaps of value, however you’ll no doubt, sit there wondering why sales are slow!

    Offer great lifetime value and earn lifetime loyalty, that’s how I feel about my experience with Elegant Themes. I will reiterate it is not the Builder that swings the deal. It’s the value, education and culture that matters most.

    In a nutshell, It could be described as being about educating the customer about how to use the product. Like Sales in the physical arena, If the customer understands how to use a product to solve a problem, they will buy it if it will indeed ad value to their life by solving the problem.

    The same applies to the sales person who is trying to sell a product, the sales person will easily sell the product that he or she can easily explain to the customer, rather than a product that is lesser know or proven.

    It’s all in the education and marketing it to show “HOW” it can solve a problem.
    If Automatic were wise, Educating the prospective customer about the “HOW” to aspect, would win sales in the long run as opposed to new shiny toys.

    Shipping Glutenberg Oops! I meant Gutenberg with WordPress, my gut instinct say’s
    it will drive new prospects away, offering it as a free helpful option, may help on-board a small minority but that’s all.

    I’ll stop typing now, or this will turn into a book!




    @daniel1009, There are no advantages that I can see “at the moment” to Gutenberg only hindrances and disruption to work flow as well as a total loss of inspiration and clarity of thought process while trying to use it. Oh and the strong desire to urgently remove it as soon as attempting to type in the title field. I was already searching the repository for a plugin to prevent WordPress updating in preparation for install on 29 sites prior to the release of WP 5.0 which apparently is going to ship with this new monster.



    That said, the hope is the more and more work happens with Gutenberg, the less the need to ‘turn off’ will be.

    Well, since 2/3 users in reviews absolutely detest Gutenberg, its pretty obvious this will be one of many popular plugins to turn this horrible thing off. Most users will have Gutenberg permanently turned-off.

    But really, this is all backwards. You now have Gutenberg (which hides and changes MCE), and a layered plugin on top of that to bring back MCE. Does that really make any sense?

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 5 months ago by Avrom. Reason: typo, know replaced with now

    I agree with Web 242. This is entirely backwards. Gutenberg is clearly plugin territory, and has no business in Core



    Well, I changed my view and review completely, March 2018. I no longer hate it I love it !! A lot has happened since I first saw and used it. It is easy to see where Gutenberg is going now, and I think it is a good move forward.

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