Which is more depressing, forty days of rain or using the new WordPress Block/Gutenberg editor?
Unlike Enchanted April (link to last blog), this past April has been anything but enchanting. Day after day of rain and gloomy skies – on Tuesday we even had a bit of sleet, and some places received several inches of snow. These cold wet late springs are beginning to be the norm here, and it seems you need to book a vacation to an Italian castle if you want to enjoy nice weather and blooming flowers in April anymore. Despite the debate over climate change, it does make you stop and think – are we ruining the earth? It’s enough to make you depressed, like poor old Charlie Brown of the Peanuts cartoon fame – remember how Lucy was always calling him a blockhead.
Which brinks me to my second topic, the new WordPress block editor or Gutenberg Editor, as it is named after Johannes Gutenberg, who invented a printing press with movable type more than 500 years ago. If you are not familiar with it yet, each paragraph, photo, video etc, is contained in it’s own separate block, and there is an option to try out this new Editor on the right hand menu in Draft. Since we are all (sooner or later), to be made mandatory Blockheads by WordPress, you may now have another reason to be depressed other than the weather, unless of course you’re the kind of person who enjoys coding and fiddling with layouts. If you’re just here for the joy of blogging, then it seems like the new editor has taken all the fun out of it. I’m not sure how they managed to take something so simple (writing and inserting pretty pictures) and make it so complicated. Of course, I may change my mind once I get used to it, but it seems to be taking twice as long to do anything, if you can even figure it out in the first place. On my first try I could not even paste in the draft I had written in Office Word. I had heard that it would automatically convert it to blocks so I wouldn’t have to copy and paste each paragraph individually. Was I not in the right block? I finally gave up and tried to exit back to the Classic Editor but could not find the button. I googled and read the tutorial and tried to contact a Happiness Engineer to no avail, and after wasting an hour finally located it at the bottom of some sub-menu. Intuitive it is not. Perhaps hiding the button was deliberate, thereby forcing me to stay here until I figured it out, but the hour grew late and I was starting to panic. It was like being in one of those reality “escape room” games where you have to figure out the clues or you’d be stuck there forever.
When I first joined WordPress almost two years ago, there were 32 million followers on here, now there are 52 million. I’m not sure what is behind their reason for the change to the block format (could it be the new European copyright laws coming?), but I would bet the majority of those on here are either amateur bloggers or smaller business sites, who don’t want, have the time or even care about how they can endlessly change and create new layouts by moving blocks around. It’s a puzzle to me, but then I am only a very small tadpole in a great big pond. I checked a recent survey though, 1800 of 2700 users who had tried it were not happy, so I don’t think I’m alone. It would be nice if WordPress would leave us the option to continue with the current Classic editor, if that is a possibility? (Asking nicely here, but not really expecting a positive response, as they didn’t listen about the dark blue likes and links which don’t contrast well to black ink.)
Ah well, the second attempt was better, but I watched a youtube tutorial first to get the basics. I’m sure there are many more icons and features I will need to know at some point, like just exactly how did I do the links? The captions were fun though. I’ll try it out to see if it will solve the problem of my very thin font with the Sela theme…(it did not, although I was allowed to make it larger). I’ll even try a background color, maybe yellow….pretty fancy eh? (Except it’s not really yellow, it’s called luminous vivid amber.) But good grief Charlie Brown, it’s just not worth all the grief. I think I would prefer to remain Glutenberg-free! Now where is that exit button again?
To cheer up I went for a walk in the woods. Here’s a link to last years blog, Among the Daffodils, because daffodils always remind me of sunshine, and we need some right now.
PS. Have you tried the new Gutenberg/Block Editor yet?