GoDaddy contributors for WordPress 5.8

Industry NewsCategory
8 min read
Courtney Robertson

WordPress is made possible by countless contributors. Many contributors freely volunteer their personal time to give back to the project. Some contributors are sponsored by companies as part of the Five for the Future initiative. GoDaddy participates in the Five for the Future program across several teams, such as Core, Training, Marketing, and specifically in the Gutenberg plugin. These contributors participated in the WordPress 5.8 release: 

Mike Schroder: 

Tell us what your day-to-day job includes: 

I start the day catching up with what is happening in the WordPress project and connecting with contributors to move tasks forward and get to know folks better.   

This helps in seeing what the focus will be for the day, whether with code, reviews, or otherwise. 

Recently, I have been learning and focusing on the Block Editor, which has been a great way to pick up new skills. 

I feel privileged to get to spend time on open-source, and working with my GoDaddy coworker, George Mamadashvili, has been wonderful.  

What did you participate in that made it into the WordPress 5.8 release? 

I helped out with WebP support, which included steps that will make it easier to automatically convert between image types on upload for better performance. 

There were also a few Block Editor changes, including a feature that allows folks to transform Group blocks into Cover blocks.  

What are your favorite features about this release?  

Of course, I was excited to see WebP support land! 

It’s also great to see the next steps into Full Site Editing, in a way that encourages testing by the community as it is built and refined. 

What are you looking forward to in 5.9?  (and what areas are you focusing on contributing to) 

I’m excited about the direction of the Full Site Editing changes that are targeting 5.9: 

I’m also looking forward to fixes and improvements planned for image conversion and hoping that the proposed improvements to plugin and theme updates end up making the release. 

I’m planning on helping out where needed with the Block Editor/FSE plans and image handling improvements. 

Roughly how long have you been contributing to WordPress Core releases?  

Just over 10 years! My first contribution was to WordPress 3.2. 

What is your advice for others wanting to contribute?   

Ask lots of questions! There are many folks working on the project, and it’s always okay to ask if you’re not sure what to do next. This is something I struggle with sometimes, but usually, as soon as I ask, I find out that folks not only don’t mind being asked — they are excited to answer.

George Mamadashvili: 

Tell us what your day-to-day job includes:  

I mainly work on the core Block Editor. It means I spend most of my days in the Gutenberg GitHub repository, testing, reviewing, or searching for new issues I can fix. 

What did you participate in that made it into the WordPress 5.8 release? 

As a core Block Editor contributor, it was my first release, and I primarily focused on enhancements and bug fixes. 

I enjoyed working on enhancements for the media blocks. Like drag and drop image replacement for Cover block and width control for Media & Text block. I also worked on a long-standing issue to bring “Most Used Tags” back to the post editor. 

What are your favorite features about this release? 

The Global Settings API or theme.json and the List View are two of my favorite features that shipped with this release.

The List View gives us an easy way to navigate large content. I find it super handy when testing Full Site Editor and need quick access to certain template parts on the page. 

I like theme.json since it unlocks new possibilities for the developers and users.  

What are you looking forward to in 5.9?

I’m looking forward to the “Global Styles,” the interfaces for the theme.json and Navigation Menus project. The latter will introduce a new Navigation block and screen.

There are many features I want to contribute to, but I think I will shift my focus as the release needs. 

Roughly how long have you been contributing to WordPress Core releases? 

I started as a volunteer for Theme Team, helping with theme reviews for

My first code contribution was for version 3.4. I think being part of the Theme Team gave me the courage to create my first patch. 

What is your advice for others wanting to contribute? 

There are many ways to contribute, and it doesn’t have to be code. The “Contributing to WordPress” page lists all the ways you can contribute to the project. Pick one you feel most comfortable with and start there. 

Courtney Robertson: 

Tell us what your day-to-day job includes: 

I listen to what is happening in the WordPress community. After grabbing a mug of coffee, I open my RSS reader to see what posts companies and individuals in the WordPress space have shared. Often, I do this while listening to WordPress-related podcasts as well. I scan my Youtube subscriptions and schedule content to share on my own social accounts. I browse through Twitter to see what is being discussed most today. Then I check in to many Facebook groups, Slack communities, and other community or social media outposts.  

In addition to listening to the community, I am a team co-rep for the Make WordPress Training team. I review any topic submissions, help facilitate meetings, and have just begun planning a course to launch soon on 

When there are booths at WordPress events, you will find me spending time together with my team members there. Coming soon: WordCamp US and FemTechConf 

What did you participate in that made it into the WordPress 5.8 release? 

I support the Make WordPress Marketing team with release communications work. The Marketing team helped draft the announcement post for the 5.8 release  and a social media pack, which helps anyone share about the new features in WordPress 5.8.  This overlap work helps me to keep eyes on new content that should appear on as well.   

What are your favorite features about this release 

A big shift is happening in WordPress. I am really excited about the introduction we see to Full Site Editing. WordPress 5.8 introduced settings that will help others develop themes and adjust the look of their sites in a brand new way. Most people will not find those changes yet, but the settings are there so developers can start making themes or expand how their plugin settings can be adjusted.  

What are you looking forward to in 5.9?   

In WordPress 5.9, I really look forward to seeing themes ready to be installed by more users. No longer will knowing PHP be required to tweak how your theme works. Soon you will be able to customize headers, footers, sidebars, and more just by using the block editor interface.   

I am focused on making lesson plans, workshops, and courses available for these new features to be available on so that others can learn how to use these features on their own sites.  

Roughly how long have you been contributing to WordPress Core releases?   

This was my first release, but I have used WordPress since 2.3.  I am really looking forward to working more closely with the Core team.  

What is your advice for others wanting to contribute?   

The Core team shares these ways to participate:

Want to contribute? Get started quickly with our tickets marked as good first bugs for new contributors or join a bug scrub. There’s more on our reports page, like patches needing testing, and on our feature projects page. 

There are also many non-code ways to contribute to a release.  The Marketing team greatly appreciates help writing release communications. Training and Docs teams can always use help revising any content for feature changes. 

Five for the Future

GoDaddy is proud to contribute to the WordPress project via Five for the Future with release contributions, sponsoring events, and across a variety of teams.  


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