Automattic is the New GoDaddy

Remember a few years back how everyone hated GoDaddy not for product reasons, but because the company offered a horrible user experience filled with spammy upsells?

A hat tip to Brian Krogsgard for alerting me to what you see when you activate the Jetpack plugin in WordPress, which is widely touted as a free solution for dozens of bits of functionality that aren’t part of the core WordPress product.

Here’s the screen immediately after you activate Jetpack and connect to WordPress.com. Can you find the free option that’s not an upsell?

Automattic is the New GoDaddy

Here it is!

Jetpack Activation Upsell

Yes, this is Jetpack, prominently shown at the top of the Featured Plugins section of both WordPress.org (the open source project) and from within the dashboards of anyone running WordPress.

It’s unfortunate to see Automattic (with CEO Matt Mullenweg who also oversees the open source WordPress.org project1) abuse this position with a crappy user experience that pushes its own commercial interests.

GoDaddy has gotten better in the last few years after a new CEO set them on a better course. Maybe there’s hope for Automattic too.

  1. …and also the WordPress foundation, because why not have as many conflicts of interest as possible?

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