The state of open source content management systems
The state of open source content management systems (e.g. Backdrop, Drupal, WordPress) monthly nonprofit-oriented Drupal (and sometimes Backdrop) conference calls:
- sponsored by NTEN
- also see list of links at the bottom of that document
ATEN's Drupal distro for libraries and other space-centered groups:
- Fork of Drupal 7 (now is at Drupal 10(?))
- Tailored for non-profits
- Upgrades to Drupal break backwards compatibility. Backdrop has more compatibility with Drupal 7
- A lot of overlap with CiviCRM community
- Zulip chat is active
- Drupal 8 and beyond is very different - would be extremely difficult to try to port something from one of those to Backdrop
- Can still bring Drupal 7 modules over to backgrop as support continues beyond end-of-life
- Backdrop needs more developers. A lot of the developers are also interested in CiviCRM
- A lot of the larger Drupal community does not pay attention to Backdrop, but folks who are still supporting their Drupal 7 sites are starting to look toward Backdrop. Will get more attention from the Drupal community that way.
- CiviCRM has an official release on backdrop
- Drupal & Backdrop both have (over WP)
- Publishing flows
- Structured content
- Views module
- (better) CiviCRM integration
- Can be harder to use if you just need to add content to a page
- Django-based CMS - https://wagtail.io/
- Responsive, has built-in A/B testing
- Seems easy to use on the user/content editor side; a simple front-end for that.
- Has Django's advantages built in, e.g. emphasis on security
- Have been feeling some of the workflow problems on WP
- Wordpress has gotten better in dealing with version control for content
- Vast resources in the WP community!
- Interesting time in WP right now: a lot of effort towards the "page builder mentality," augment core functionality, build designs out one block at a time
- Core software is moving in that direction, though more slowly in order to maintain commitment to backwards compatibility
- If you want to do lots of custom design out of the box without writing much code, WP prioritizes that
- More design controls available in WP without lots of custom code, declared through json instead
- Good for agencies who want to give clients only the options they need to build the kind of design developed for the site
- Using WP more as a platform for developing web application. With the DB behind WP, you can build a fairly sophisticated database app for the web like that. Started as a blogging platform but you can do so much more with it. Web app is not so much the focus as page builder is, but still a worthwhile consideration as a dev platform.
- Backwards compatibility commitment is a double-edged sword
- The plugins available on top of Wordpress - are there some that create more problems than they solve? How much would you recommend that clients stick with the "stock" wordpress
- i.e. having Elementor on top of Wordpress to make custom pages that look good with little to no code
- you're locking yourself into an "extensions" way of doing things, and it may be hard switching it up
- There's always going to be a niche for adding something even easier than what you get "out-of-the-box. Many of the reasons people turn to page builders like Elementor is going away as more is shipped along with Wordpress.
- New folks coming in and learning alongside those who may have not-as-up-to-date knowledge, which will effect the way forward
- Complicated with CMS in general is separating the job of the designers from the people writing the text. The various systems aren't always great at it.
Note: I wasn't able to join this group, but if people are interested in talking about challenges with Drupal 7 to 9 upgrades, I'm always happy to talk about our experience working with a variety of nonprofits on this upgrade. The monthly NTEN Drupal calls are great and I'm a regular participant. - 312-505-7461 firstname.lastname@example.org - Tim Nafziger