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Open-source vs. Custom Code

The worst of both worlds

In another chapter of the open-source vs. custom code debate, this situation came about for me. I picked up a client that already had a website; a WordPress site with a “premium” theme. The advantages of the open-source WordPress code base have been negated by the proprietary premium theme.

Making matters worse, the premium theme has terrible support. The help system consists of short videos that walk through only the most basic of tasks. Anything out of the ordinary or anything complex is not addressed. The accompanying forum basically says,  “go watch the videos and if that doesn’t work send me an email.” The author is many time zones away; I can’t get support when I need it.

Now the theme has gone through a major update and all the “help” videos relate to the new version. Just great.

So now the client is left with the bloat and excess of WordPress (it contains many features the client will never use) and the draw-backs of proprietary software that is out of date and poorly supported.

So is it the client’s fault? Sure, to some extent. But the company that sold him this setup was certainly not aware or not concerned with the problems this solution created.

ps – Of course, this situation never occurs when I use custom code; code that I create, control, and can change any time I need to.