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Help Me Help You: The art and science of getting good WordPress support - WordCamp Ottawa 2013
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Help Me Help You: The art and science of getting good WordPress support - WordCamp Ottawa 2013

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Visual Editor stopped working? Plugin update gone awry? Getting useful help when you’re stuck on a WordPress problem is not always as straightforward as it seems. This session will be packed with tips …

Visual Editor stopped working? Plugin update gone awry? Getting useful help when you’re stuck on a WordPress problem is not always as straightforward as it seems. This session will be packed with tips on how to ask for assistance in the WordPress support forums and other arenas – in a way that will let others help you more easily and effectively. We’ll also cover some handy techniques for basic troubleshooting on your own – before contacting tech support.

Published in: Technology, Business

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  • The links at the end are:

    http://www.wpbeginner.com/beginners-guide/ how-to-properly-ask-for-wordpress-support-and-get-it/

    http://en.blog.wordpress.com/2013/03/12/meet-volunteer-1tess/
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  • One of the fonts got a bit mangled and two images disappeared in the Slideshare conversion, so here's a PDF download:
    http://www.zoonini.com/wcott/HelpMeHelpYou-KPresner.pdf
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  • Search is a powerful tool. Take advantage of it before even asking for help.
  • If you’re having a problem, chances are, someone else has had the same problem – your answer might be right at your fingertips
  • Know where you are – big difference between WordPress.com & WordPress.org – post in the right place
  • Don’t know how to do something? Read the docs
  • Don’t know how to do something? Read the docs
  • Don’t know how to do something? Read the docs
  • Don’t know how to do something? Read the docs
  • Don’t forget the plugin search field
  • 4 – how long have you been using WP? Are you a blogger, designer, developer? Try to avoid vague expressions like tech-savvy that can mean different things to different people. You might say “I know basic CSS and intermediate HTML, but I’ve never used PHP.”6 – are you still running WP 2.5? running multisite? still using Kubrik? on a Windows server? have 500,000 posts?
  • 6 – are you still running WP 2.5? running multisite? still using Kubrik? on a Windows server? have 500,000 posts?
  • If you ask for someone specific, you may be doing yourself a disservice. That person may not be around and you may discourage others who may be able to help from replying
  • Try to repeat under other conditions to narrow down culprit
  • 1 & 2 – save older version of plugin or theme so you can revert3 – check master troubleshooting list in forum4 – functions.php can be particularly dangerousNever edit files live on the server
  • 1 & 2 – save older version of plugin or theme so you can revert3 – check master troubleshooting list in forum4 – functions.php can be particularly dangerousNever edit files live on the server
  • Transcript

    • 1. HELPMEHELPYOUThe art and science of getting good WordPress supportWordcamp Ottawa 2013#wcottawa
    • 2. KATHRYN PRESNERAutomattic Happiness EngineerWordPress.org support forum volunteerWeb designer/developer
    • 3. THE GOODTHE BADand the
    • 4. THE GOOD12345CLEAR GOALCLEAR PROBLEMRELEVANT CODEGIVES LINKPOLITE & GRATEFUL
    • 5. THE BAD2345NO LINKDOESN’T LIST STEPS ALREADY TAKEN“UNABLE TO FOLLOW DIRECTIONS”DOESN’T MENTION WHICH BROWSER1 VAGUE PROBLEM
    • 6. DOsSome things to keep in mindwhen asking for support
    • 7. DO A SEARCHtry helping yourself before asking for help
    • 8. DO A SEARCHsearch for your issue in natural language
    • 9. WORDPRESS.ORGFORUMSUPPORT AVENUESwordpress.org support forumhttp://wordpress.org/support/• Self-hosted• Database & FTP access• Upload any theme or plugin• Manage own hosting & security• Forum volunteers• Other community support, i.e.local meetup groups• Commercial support –themes/plugins• One-on-one paid support.COM VS .ORG
    • 10. WORDPRESS.COMFORUMSUPPORT AVENUESwordpress.com support forum http://en.forums.wordpress.com• Hosted platform, managedupdates & security• Free URLyourgroovysite.wordpress.com• Paid upgrades – customdomain, CustomDesign, bundles, etc.• No FTP/database access• No theme or plugin uploads• Forum volunteers• Forum staff• Private support – email/forum• Live chat.COM VS .ORG
    • 11. READ DOCSwordpress.org codex
    • 12. READ DOCSwordpress.org plugin faq
    • 13. READ DOCSwordpress.com support documentation
    • 14. READ DOCSwordpress.com theme info page
    • 15. GET SPECIFICwordpress.org forum for localhost installs
    • 16. GET SPECIFICplugin forum for wordpress seo by yoast
    • 17. GET SPECIFICstudiopress premium theme support forum
    • 18. GET SPECIFICpremium theme support forum –wordpress.com
    • 19. GIVE DETAILSVERSIONself-hosted onlyOS/DEVICESafari? Internet Explorer 7, 8, 9, 10?Firefox? Chrome? Opera? Amazon Kindle?AOL Explorer? Netscape Navigator (OMGRLY?)Blackberry? iPod? iPhone? WindowsPhone? Android? Laptop? Desktop? iPad?iPad mini? Mac? PC? Snow Leopard?Lion? Mountain Lion? Windows7/8/Vista/XP?WordPress X.X?Plugin version?Theme version?BROWSERhttp://supportdetails.com
    • 20. LET US KNOW2345THINGS YOU’VE ALREADY TRIEDIF YOU HAVE A THEORYYOUR LEVEL OF TECH SKILLA LINK TO THE SITE16 ANYTHING UNUSUAL ABOUT YOUR SETUP7EXACT STEPS TO REPLICATE PROBLEMSCREENSHOTS OF THE ISSUE
    • 21. KEEP IN MIND23VOLUNTEERS DONATE THEIR TIMETHEY ARE PEOPLE LIKE YOU, BE COURTEOUSMAKE IT EASY FOR THEM TO HELP1117 pages of30 threads4WP, THEMES & PLUGINS ARE FREE
    • 22. DON’TsWhat to avoidwhen asking for support
    • 23. DON’T2345BE DEMANDINGACT ENTITLEDASK FOR SOMEONE BY NAMEBE TOO BRIEFUSE A NON-DESCRIPTIVE SUBJECTnayyay1
    • 24. TROUBLESHOOTINGThings to trywhen things go ‘splody
    • 25. YOUR SETUP2345DIFFERENT BROWSERCLEAR BROWSER CACHE & COOKIESBROWSER WITH EXTENSIONS OFFANOTHER MACHINEDIFFERENT LOCATION/NETWORK/ISP16 BYPASS ROUTER7 TRACEROUTE/CONSOLEhttp://en.support.wordpress.com/browser-issues/advanced-browser-troubleshooting/
    • 26. DID YOU2345UPDATE A PLUGIN?UPDATE YOUR THEME?UPDATE WORDPRESS?EDIT A THEME FILE? (beware functions.php)ADD A WIDGET?16 HACK CORE? (cue ominous music)
    • 27. TRY2345SWITCH TO DEFAULT THEME TEMPORARILYTURN OFF PLUGINS, REACTIVATE 1 AT A TIMEREVERT TO PREVIOUS VERSION OF THEMEREVERT TO PREVIOUS VERSION OF PLUGIN1UPDATE THEME OR PLUGIN
    • 28. DON’TPanicabove all
    • 29. FIND MEabout.me/kpresner@zooninislideshare.net/zooniniTHE SLIDEShttp://www.wpbeginner.com/beginners-guide/how-to-properly-ask-for-wordpress-support-and-get-it/MOREhttp://en.blog.wordpress.com/2013/03/12/meet-volunteer-1tess/

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