25 Responses

  1. Zac
    Zac Published |

    I would love to see a theme that is geared towards educators who want to use wordpress to post regular goings on, lectures, or tutorials from class as well as keep more static informational pages.

  2. Small Potato
    Small Potato Published |

    Sorry about forcing you to take down the services page. I should stop sending you referrals. I know.

    When we get a chance to, I’d like to have a chat with you about WordPress themes because I believe we are heading in similar directions. Like you, I’m not competing in the $50-$100 paid themes market and I’ve been doing my own thing.

  3. Moses Francis
    Moses Francis Published |

    The Future is definitely WordPress.I like your $2 stylesheets idea, charging for-add ons instead of the main item is a pretty good business too.

  4. VideosCafe
    VideosCafe Published |

    “Many of you have asked when I’ll start charging for my services. The short answer — never.” That’s the best, the great, and lovely I love from you Justin. Keep work for humanity… not for captalism… Love you love you 🙂

  5. Charles
    Charles Published |

    Did you take down your forum too? I’ve been getting 404 for the past week when I try to login to your Forum.

    I really like your Options Theme even though I, (with all the reading and references) still can’t figure out how to use Custom Fields–especially how to create values. (I–like many if not most of your FANS am NOT A GEEK, php or CSS fluent. Please don’t ASSUME that I know thing one. Please DO spell out in detail (as if I were in the 3rd grade) what you’re talining about.

    OK, I’m sorry. I know this is NOT the appropriate venue for my comments and questions. It’s the only way (at present) I know to reach you since your forum doesn’t seem to be working.

  6. skarld
    skarld Published |

    From release, to controversy, to authority, you have become a WP theme rock star!
    You mentioned ease of use in the article. Design so your mother can use it, and everyone will benefit. It worked for AOL.

  7. CircleReader
    CircleReader Published |

    @skarld: and for Blake Ross!

    I like the $2 idea as well. It’s not too expensive, and gets around the intimidation of trying to hack your CSS to experiment with a different look. Chuck out the old style and bring in the new for only two dollars–a two-buck chuck sheet!

  8. CircleReader
    CircleReader Published |

    Sorry for the double post, but I did want to add that I would look forward to a book reviewing theme…

  9. Karim
    Karim Published |

    The $2 Style sheet idea is brilliant, great way to monetize (in a small way) and I would pay in a heart beat, let me know when it’s available…

  10. Nick
    Nick Published |

    Make a sports theme… PLEASE!!! There aren’t any out there… Brian tried, and he made a great theme, but what makes it a sports theme? Make something with a scoreboard, something with a spot for breaking news and briefs, look at ESPN, SI, etc… in other words, make it sports theme, not a general theme… please somebody do this… and soon!

  11. wideaperture
    wideaperture Published |

    Best of luck, Justin! Glad to know you’re in on the future-of-Wordpress discussion!

  12. Justin Tadlock
    Justin Tadlock Published |

    That sounds like a good idea. Maybe I’ll get around to it if someone doesn’t do it first. I have some similar ideas, so we’ll see where the future takes us.

    Small Potato
    No problem with sending referrals. I’ve actually got some interesting projects out of custom designs, so it’s always nice to see what people want done.

    We’ll definitely chat sometime about themes and where we’re headed.

    I’m a fan of charging the $2 fee for new styles because it’s honestly not much money and it’ll probably give me a little extra money to work with.

    WordPress was built on the idea of open source and people sharing ideas, which is something I want to continue promoting.

    The forum has been going strong. Maybe there was a glitch or something at some time. Try clearing your cache or cookies or something.

    Thanks. “Design so your mother can use it.” I think I should paste that in the corner of my monitor to remember as I putting together new stuff.

    A book-reviewing theme is definitely something I want to experiment with in the future because reading is a passion of mine, even if I don’t do it as much as I’d like.

    If I had $2 for every download thus far, I’d have $8,000. Of course, that’s not taking into account people that wouldn’t pay, would opt to use the free stylesheet, or design their own. It’s an interesting concept that I might try.

    I’d really like to do a sports theme, but it’s not in my immediate plans. A stylesheet for Options or Structure sounds like an option that I could do much sooner. If no one gets around to it in the coming months, I might just have to take on the project.

    Thanks. I’ve seen quite a few comments saying that themes are getting boring, so I’m ready to step it up a notch.

  13. Nick
    Nick Published |

    that sounds great… all the pieces are there. Definately. I own so many themes, and have downloaded so many free ones, between all of them I’m sure I could do a killed mash-up. i just don’t have the skills to do i and have it looked polished. I personally think that MLB.com has the most amazing site…

    If you don’t get around to it sometime soon, maybe I’ll start going to the casino every night until i win enough money to hire you to make me one…

  14. ntas
    ntas Published |

    Justin great work..I have been saying this for a while..Create a Theme Club like Small Potato’s. Period. Just a small annual fee (may be between $10 to $30). Bring out at least one theme every month, put in those css you are talking about, throw in some custom plugins, offer support in the forums. Thus also you get to have a community that help each other. “Premium” themes are new to WordPress and what developers dont get is that people dont like to pay a one-off fee to buy a theme or an extension thats why there has been an uproar about GPL and WordPress lately. People like to belong to something, a commnity perhaps.
    Thats why I am suggesting you create a Theme Club (dont worry you can also create FREE themes for non members). Theme Clubs work in Joomla (check RocketTheme.com or JoomlArt.com) because the underlying business model makes people feel like they belong to a community where they get stuff(themes, plugins, support) and at the same time it gives the developer some steady income to buy resources and balance your lifestyle financially so that you can have a free mind for creative thinking..well just my thought

  15. Nick
    Nick Published |

    yea, rocket theme’s has the greatest set up. I actually thought about jumping to Joomla after seeing how it works. I mean $50 bucks for all the themes they have created then 3 new ones of the next there months, or 100 bucks for all the theme’s they have and then 12 more… THat’s a lot easier to stomach than 100 bucks a pop, then you realize that maybe this theme doesn’t look as good on your site as it did on the demo. If someone with quality design skills set up shop using the rocket model, they’d kill the competition. No one is going to back 100 bucks for one theme of the same quality when they can get 50 and the next 10 for the same price.

  16. Stephen Lane
    Stephen Lane Published |

    ntas and Nick I agree 100%, I sent Justin an email earlier today about this very thing.

    Glad to see I’m not alone on this.

  17. RebeccaJ
    RebeccaJ Published |

    I’d willing to pay for stylesheets to change things up occasionally. I don’t mind trying things on my own but I’m still hesitant to really mess with the css.

  18. Daniel
    Daniel Published |


    You mentioned that you may think about developing a video games theme, and I wanted to let you know that I have used your Options theme for a games site:


    The site is still in beta, and any feedback is appreciated.

    Thanks for all the hard work, you’ve been a great help to the WP community!

  19. The House of Husar
    The House of Husar Published |

    “Many of you have asked when I’ll start charging for my services. The short answer — never.” Hats to you! I have only paid for a theme one time. Everything else has been a hack of an existing theme. Every theme I have seen (for sale or free) doesn’t come close to what you have offered in the Options theme.

    All other theme developers that are selling their themes should be embarrassed by your work. Keep up the great work and I will keep click on your ads on a daily basis to help you get something for your work! Everyone else should do the same.


  20. Cody Redmon
    Cody Redmon Published |

    World class, that’s all there is to it.

  21. Justin Tadlock
    Justin Tadlock Published |

    Please start hitting up all the casinos. 🙂

    With Small Potato announcing he’s leaving WPDesigner.com behind, I might consider starting a themes club. I like how Rocket Theme is set up. I haven’t checked out many of the the others.

    I just know that continually making themes and supporting them all will eventually take its toll on me mentally and physically, unless I could make enough to quite my dayjob and do this full time.

    Stephen Lane
    Thanks for the email.

    One business model I’m considering is just releasing the templates and selling the stylesheets. Maybe mixing that with the club idea might not be so bad.

    The video games theme was just an example but definitely a possibility. Your site looks good. Maybe just change the background color of your header image to match the page’s background color.

    The House of Husar
    All of us theme developers at least think of ways to monetize at some point, which I’m doing too. I just want to continue giving back what I’ve been giving to the community for free. The thing I want to do is mix the same free system with a way to make a few dollars too.

    Cody Redmon
    Thanks. 🙂

  22. Des Walsh
    Des Walsh Published |

    Have tried links to forum, using firefox and ie, but with no luck. Forum down?

  23. Justin Tadlock
    Justin Tadlock Published |

    Des Walsh
    The forums are working fine right now. They were down a couple of days ago. You might need to clear your browser cache.

  24. jez
    jez Published |

    being a theme designer myself in spare time I can agree to your point where you say “Many of you have asked when I’ll start charging for my services. The short answer — never.” –

    Wordpress is just not meant for paid services I believe. Themes should be free and the only occurrence when one is to charge for work is when you do custom client work.

    mezzoblue has similar views – http://mezzoblue.com/archives/2008/03/04/producing/index.php

  25. Justin Tadlock
    Justin Tadlock Published |

    People sure do like to point out that particular line:

    “Many of you have asked when I’ll start charging for my services. The short answer — never.”

    I think I’ll continue releasing free themes until I simply get tired of putting them together at least.

    I do think there is potential monetary gain with the WordPress system though. We just need the right business model, one that gives back to the community, while allowing designers and developers to make a few extra dollars.

    Another idea I’ve been thinking about is releasing free themes but selling alternate stylesheets for cheap (maybe $2). There’s always a themes club model too.

    So, “never” shouldn’t be taken too literally. When I say this, I mean that I’ll never charge for the services I currently offer, which includes the support and attempts at innovation with WordPress.

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