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Lowercase p, dangit! WordPress Controversy

There has recently been a new piece of code added to the WordPress core which makes sure that people spell WordPress correctly – automatically correcting misspellings (ie. making the P in the middle uppercase).

On its own this seems harmless enough but there has been a lot of talk in the WordPress community about it over the last couple of days. Summed up the key issues are:

  • The plugin is breaking urls such as links and image paths
  • WordPress is modifying content without permission
  • The change was made silently as if it was being ‘sneaked in’

Speaking personally – I did once run a plugin on here that did exactly the same thing, and I removed it for the main reason above – ie it broke stuff. Apparently there have been some fixes made that improve the word detection so hopefully this will be a smaller issue in future updates, but still – it’s not the best thing to do.

Removing it is relatively easy. Just add the filters below to your theme or download and install this plugin:

remove_filter ('the_content', 'capital_P_dangit');
remove_filter ('the_title', 'capital_P_dangit');
remove_filter ('comment_text', 'capital_P_dangit');

Justin Tadlock has a complete write-up of all the problems about the automatic correction of the spelling of WordPress – well worth a read.

So what do you think of this change? Is it acceptable – or is it stepping over the line?

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7 Comments »

  1. Isn’t there bigger fish to fry than this? Seems like I notice a lot of time being wasted this on this discussion every time I poke my head up from my WordPress dev.

    Surely there are lots and lots of great new features of WordPress that could be moved forward instead!

    ..and now, back to the dev. :)

    • I think if a core changes breaks peoples websites, especially over something so trivial, then it’s definitely worth spending time on.

      More than the fact that this is so small is the fact that they made a core change, that affects many people, and didn’t discuss the possible effects beforehand.

      • I am just not sure why they focussed on such a small issue, now, when there are lots of ‘goodies’ people want to see added to WordPress to keep the machine rolling on! Lets not stall now!!

      • Do you mean “isn’t there bigger fish for WordPress to fry”?

        In that case I absolutely agree. I think it’s a silly feature that’s caused a lot of negative publicity and confusion from the hardcore/ dedicated users. I suspect a lot of WordPress users simply didn’t notice, but I would also guess it caused problems for a lot more people than they had considered.

  2. It’s a small thing and the function itself is a perfectly decent idea, but it was the way it was implemented that’s annoyed a lot of people, myself included. It’s the fact it actually edits your content and was just snuck in that’s the problem. First this trivial matter, but what next?

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