WordPress Multisite has a few areas I would love to see improved. Mainly it is the process of signing up new users and sites and then improving how those sites and users are moderated and managed, which sounds simple enough but it crosses into several areas.
I am sure there is more than what I have jotted down below but these have been ideas that have slowly piled up over a couple years of running PhotographyBlogSites.com and I hope we get a chance to address some of them to enhance the user experience.
The Signup Process
Right now, the process for a new user to signup crosses several screens, requires an activation email to be sent with an auto-generated password. It is also difficult to manipulate not only the look but the process itself so that plugins or themes can make it better. Ideally this should be WAY simpler, as in 1) Type in username, password and email. 2) Here is your new site.
I would love to see something like a templating process so themes can add their own signup pages easily or maybe a simple function like wp_signup_form() that adds the entire process anywhere you want it. I believe there is already a function close to that but it doesn’t do the whole thing in one shot.
The ultimate process for me would be an ajaxified form that could be stuck literally anywhere, take signup info, refresh itself with success or failure right within the page.
The Welcoming process for new users and sites, and upgrades
The dashboard is impossible to customize right now. While you can add new metaboxes, that is very limiting. Ideally, it would be great to get plugins and themes the ability to customize the experience for new users (Welcome to BlahBlah.com ), new sites ( Welcome to your new site. Here is what to look for. ) and for upgrade notices, like each version of WP does.
I was able to accomplish this by hacking two custom filters into core. Yes, I can admint I hacked core. Just this once, because I needed to. But it allowed us to offer welcome messages and upgrade messages to users and GREATLY reduced support requests, almost to zero for new users.
User and Site Creation by Super Admins
There is inconsistency between the screens that allow super admins to create new sites and users and the process users would use to create their own from the signup process. There should be a way to add the same fields and hook into both the same way so that for example a plugin could add a Twitter field or phone number, or anything else to the signup process.
User and Site Moderation and Management
There is a lot that could be done here. Maybe new users can be pending until approved? There were some bugs surrounding the process of spamming and unspamming sites and users. I worked on one at WordCamp SF recently, Ticket #20774 where marking a user of any level, even subscriber would mark any site they were on as spam, killing the entire site.
Some of the site management might get into network admin screen options pages, so that we could have better control over disk space quotas, # of users per site, # of blogs allowed per user, better ability to search sites and users based on strings rather than exact words.
Some Tickets to look at
This is a list of current tickets in the WordPress trac that address some areas I would love to see improved.
MultiSite Signup Process and user Management
- 17904 – username validation in single vs multisite is different
- 17984 – better signup forms
- 12030 – registration enhancements
- 12013 – new user creation features
- 12032 – Additional Option of Site Admin -> Options -> Allow new Registrations.
- 12720 – Delete user and hook confusion when deleting users in Multisite
- 21910 – wpmu_create_user() standardization
- 23358 – Switch to a usermeta key for email confirmation in Multisite
- 14988 – Site admins should be allowed to add existing users without also enabling creation
- 20116 – changing welcome user email
Site signup archiving/Status
- 20774 – spamming a user spams any site ( worked on this at WCSF )
- 17164 – More elegant handling of site ‘archive’ options for MultiSite
- 15801- Network Admin: Deactivated / Deleted inconsistency
- 20983 – change wording of network activate link on new plugins
- 12832 – proposed schema change for site status
- 17397 – restrictions on site names – related 20019
- 19375 – delete blogid folder on deletion
- 18186 – Default registration assumptions in WP Multisite
- 20592 – Add hooks to New Site form in Dashboard
MultiSite Plugin and Theme management
MultiSite Tickets that seem fixed or too old or MU related