WordPress is an example of how far open source can get
The myths that said that an open source project is at a disadvantage because of its transparency vis-a-vis proprietary projects are increasingly outdated. Not only because we are seeing companies like Microsoft increasingly bet on open projects and even joining the Linux Foundation, but also because we have the example of many others who are getting conquered the network.
This is the case of WordPress, which step by step and without making too much noise has become one of the most important content management systems (CMS) on the internet. With it work from the smallest blogs to the mainstream media, such as The New Yorker, BBC, Forbes and so to be present in 25% the websites around the world according to Forbes.
The data has been provided by WordPress itself, so like any data obtained from the stakeholders themselves, we must take them with caution. According to them, 75 million websites use it as CMS, which in turn causes 409 million people to see more than 23.6 billion pages hosted in WordPress every month, and users create 69.5 million new posts and 46.8 million Millions of new comments monthly.
The secret of WordPress obviously comes from having been able to reach before many other proprietary alternatives to a rising sector, but also in its flexibility. The community is a key point for any open project, and in its case this has translated into millions of plugins and addons that help improve and adapt its usability.
There is also a downside. To begin with, being so popular makes us increasingly have to report on more vulnerabilities that are discovered and exploited to attack the websites that use this technology. Also, as it happens in other dominant platforms, we can be with several defective add-ons or that hide malware.
Proprietary alternatives counteract
WordPress has a dominant position, and that often translates into the difficulty of finding powerful alternatives, and even more that contain its same open philosophy. However the proprietary companies are attacking strongly, investing millions to gain visibility, and even stealing code. And is that Wix have accused them of catching WordPress code and offer the resulting product without doing so in GPL as they require open licenses.
However, WordPress creator Matt Mullenweg said in early December that more than $300 million has been invested in promoting proprietary web systems in 2016. Projects like Wix, Medium, SquareSpace or Weebly want to stand up as an alternative, and that is being interpreted by some as a threat to open source and open web.