Over the weekend, the WooThemes executive team announced that there has been a setback to the new support system and community forum launch that was scheduled to go live earlier this month. In an apologetic and informative blog post, the company’s co-founder Adii Pienaar broke the news to Woo’s fans and customers.
“Let me start by saying that I had so wished that I would be able to give everyone in the WooCommunity the good news by saying that our new Community Forum was available… Heck, what a Christmas surprise & gift that would’ve been… But alas, that’s unfortunately not the case.
A couple of weeks ago we estimated that we’d be ready by mid-December and even though we’ve tried our utmost to wrap this up in the last couple of days, we’ve unfortunately failed. We’re incredibly sorry about that!“
Our news coverage has contained several stories on the WooThemes move to ZenDesk since the plans were made public a couple of months ago. Pienaar was clear and concise in his message to current clients; outlining the reasons for postponing the final community forum launch date to early next month.
“We have encountered quite a few challenges, especially with regards to the migration of our old forum data which needed to be sanitized, reformatted and checked at least 10 times (to make sure that we weren’t migrating any of your privata data). On top of that, we’ve worked with a 3rd party on this which has brought it’s own complications. Regardless of this though, we take full responsibility for not delivering as promised and we’re very sorry for this delay.
As we stand today, we’re 95% ready with our new helpdesk portal & community forum (powered by Zendesk). Considering that it’s the holiday season and that we’ll also be taking a couple of days off here & there until year-end, we didn’t want to rush something through that would end up being half-assed. We’re continuing to wrap up that last 5% now and we’ve scheduled this go live for 7 January.”
For the most part, the WordPress community environment is a positive one due to the large percentage of those involved who are experienced programmers and developers themselves. The fact that Pienaar’s firm has recently launched the first Beta version of WooCommerce 2.0 shows a strong commitment to management system improvement over a busy period when many major changes are taking place within the corporate structure of the company.
WooThemes customer Brett Blevins was supportive in his reply to the blog post and said, “Thanks for the extra care, attention, and honesty. It’s always better to do it right than do it half-assed. :) Thanks also for the fix in Canvas 5.1 that I was waiting for (the hidden slider pagination dots in the magazine template).”
User mannanali was less complimentary in his comment and typed, “I have subscribed just few days ago and I am missing all the support. Also its sad to know that Once my membership finishes we will no longer be able to get support access. Sad.”
WooThemes Holiday Promotion
On Sunday December 23rd, WooThemes announced it will be offering a 30% discount on selected merchandise through the end of 2012 for customers who use the JOLLYGOOD promotional code.
The discount applies to individual premium WordPress themes, the WooSlider plugin and WooCommerce extensions. However, membership plans are not part of the holiday promotion, which will end on December 31st.
Co-founder Mark Forrester communicated the sale details Sunday. “It’s been a huge year for us at WooThemes – we’ve grown, matured and learnt some valuable business lessons. The team have operated most of this year at 110% so we are all looking forward to a little downtime before kickstarting 2013 with some big releases.”
Once the new support system is up and running (hopefully on or before January 7th), we will bring you an in-depth update on how the system is performing for WooThemes customers.