The Month in WordPress – November 2021

Despite the holiday season being around the corner, the WordPress project didn’t slow down. In a recent episode of WP Briefing, Executive Director Josepha Haden shares the first thing she wants people to notice about WordPress, which is also the heart of this open source project:

“Now, the first thing I want people to see on that site is that WordPress has not only 18 years of learned knowledge that every single new user benefits from, but that it also has thousands of really smart people making sure it works and gets better every day.”

As always, contributors across various teams are working hard to ensure the upcoming release of WordPress 5.9 doesn’t disappoint. With State of the Word 2021 coming up soon, there are many exciting things in the works. Read the November 2021 edition of the Month in WordPress to learn more about what’s happening.

WordPress 5.9: Expected to release on January 25, 2022

The Core Team announced the WordPress 5.9 Revised Release Schedule, and the release is now planned for January 25, 2022.WordPress 5.9 Beta 1 was recently released and is available for testing. This version of the WordPress software is under development. Check out the release post to learn more about what’s new in version 5.9 and how you can help testing. Check out “A Look at WordPress 5.9” for a first peek into the exciting features included in this major release.WordPress 5.8.2, a security and maintenance release, was out on November 10, 2021. This release includes two bug fixes and one security fix.

Are you interested in contributing to WordPress core? Join the #core channel, follow the Core Team blog, and check out the team handbook. Also, don’t miss the Core Team’s weekly developer chat on Wednesdays at 8 PM UTC.

Gutenberg releases: 11.9 and 12.0 are out

Two new Gutenberg versions have been released!

Version 11.9.0 brings new Gutenberg blocks for working with post comments, a fullscreen pattern explorer modal, further iterations on the Navigation block, and many other improvements.Gutenberg 12.0.0, released on November 29, improves the Block Styles preview and includes featured image block visual enhancements, a site Editor welcome guide, official JSON schema updates, and much more.

Want to get involved in developing Gutenberg? Follow the Core Team blog, contribute to Gutenberg on GitHub, and join the #core-editor channel in the Make WordPress Slack. Follow #gutenberg-new for details on the latest updates.

State of the Word 2021: Join a watch party in your local community

State of the Word 2021, the annual keynote address delivered by the WordPress project’s co-founder, Matt Mullenweg, will be held on December 14, 2021 between 5 and 7 pm ET/10 pm – 12 am (December 15) UTC. The event will be livestreamed from New York City, and include a Question and Answer session. Host or join a State of the Word watch party to enjoy the event with your WordPress friends. Check Meetup to see if a watch party is scheduled to be held in your local community!

Add the event to your calendar so you don’t miss State of the Word 2021! Want to ask Matt a question during State of the Word? Please send your questions ahead of time to or ask them live during the event via YouTube chat.

Team updates: Nominations for some team representatives are still underway

Requests 2.0.0 has been released. This release is fully compatible with PHP 8.0 and 8.1, indicating that a legacy codebase can be modernized, made more stable and secure without breaking backward-compatibility. The Requests project is a dependency of WordPress core, which was adopted into the WordPress organization earlier this year. The 2020 WordPress Annual Survey results are available to be viewed. The Core Team added six new committers.Last month, the Marketing Team opened its call for team representatives, joining Core, Themes, Accessibility, Support,, and Hosting from October 2021.The Core Team announced its new Team Rep for 2022 (and beyond).The Design Team and the Accessibility Team’s meetings will be held bi-weekly moving forward.The Marketing Team published the latest edition of People of WordPress, featuring Devin Maeztri from Indonesia.There’s an open call for suggestions for Global Community Team, Training Team, and Polyglots goals for 2022. Please drop your ideas by December 6, 2021.The Accessibility Team has opened 1-2 volunteer positions for the #diverse-speaker-support channel.The November 2021 edition of the Polyglots monthly newsletter is out. The Marketing Team welcomes any help to promote WordPress Meetups on a weekly basis and thus keep the community connected.

We want to hear from you! Suggest your 2022 goals for the Global Community Team by December 6, 2021.

Feedback/Testing requests: Test WordPress 5.9 Beta 1; Take the 2021 Annual WordPress Survey to share your experience

WordPress 5.9 Beta 1 is now available for testing and we’d like to hear from you! Testing is vital to ensure the release is as good as it can be—it’s also a great way to contribute. Read the comprehensive guide, “Help test WordPress 5.9 Features,” to learn how to test WordPress 5.9 Beta 1 and report any bugs.There’s an open call for testing for WordPress iOS 18.7 and Android 18.7.

The 2021 WordPress Annual Survey is out! Please respond to the survey, so your WordPress experience is reflected in the results.

Keep an eye out for WordCamp Taiwan and Sevilla, along with several WordPress workshops in December 2021

Several WordPress Social Learning Meetups were held in November by the Training Team, and there will be more in December 2021.Tuesday Training sessions are paused until 2022.WordCamp São Paulo was held online on November 27, 2021.Get excited for WordCamp Sevilla 2021, coming up on December 11-12! Sevilla is the first in-person WordCamp happening in over 18 months, since WordCamps moved online in March 2020 due to COVID-19.Don’t miss the following upcoming WordCamps: WordCamp Taiwan 2021, WordCamp Birmingham 2022, and WordCamp Europe 2022!Check out the latest episodes of WordPress Briefing with Josepha Haden on“All Things Block Themes!”“WordPress=Blogging+”“The People of WordPress

Give back to open source. Please donate to the WordPress Foundation’s mission this holiday season.

Have a story that we could include in the next ‘Month in WordPress’ post? Let us know  by filling out this form

The following folks contributed to October 2021’s Month in WordPress: @anjanavasan, @harishanker, @rmartinezduque, @callye, @jrf, @webcommsat, and @nalininonstopnewsuk

Leave a Comment