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Navigating the Classic WordPress.COM interface

The good news is that we WordPress.com bloggers can make the choice not to put up with the hassle, frustration and waste of time involved in navigating and using the new editor and new stats pages, while they are under development.

What’s happening and why it’s happening

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 The Classic Editor will not be removed from WordPress.com. However, many of the links will continue to point to the New Editor as we continue to increase your ability to manage your sites (self-hosted or not) straight from the WordPress.com interface. You can read a bit more about this plan here: One Central Hub for All Your Content

For clarification on what’s been fixed, what we are working on, and which features from WP-admin are not being included in the new editor click the link provided.

I am a solution orientated person. Last month I diverted my attention away from protesting the changes being made to the new WordPress.COM user interface, and focused on locating the ways and means of accessing the legacy or classic pages for creating posts, editing posts, and viewing stats.

Constructive Feedback Welcomed

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Staff will read and welcome your recounting of your experience while using the new interface (new editor, stats pages, my sites pages and notifications pages), and your constructive feedback in threads posted into the support forum.

Please start your own thread and share your experience, constructive feedback and ideas for improvement by using this link https://en.forums.wordpress.com/?new=1.

Please also tag such threads with both modlook and new editor feedback or new stats page feedback (as appropriate)  in the tags in the sidebar of the new thread(s) you create.

Contingency Plan

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After reading several threads full of unhappy campers, I acted. I developed my own contingency plan. I hired a web host and set up a WordPress.ORG install, which is set to private, so I can move my domains and content and have more control if needs be. I doubt that I will have to act on my contingency plan but perhaps you may want to look into developing your own.

Meanwhile …

  • I use only the classic editor to create and edit posts so I’m not impacted by any limitations that the new editor has.
  • I use only the links to the classic stats pages so I’m not impacted by any changes to the new stats pages.
  • I use only a desk top computer for blogging so I am not impacted by any mobile device issues.

Navigating the Classic WordPress.COM interface

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What I post below is for those WordPress.COM bloggers, who are solution orientated and who do not want to unwittingly become a guinea pigs for BETA testing of the new user interface. If you are willing to stick your neck out as I do then please read on.

1. To use the classic editor to create posts,
go to Dashboard > Posts > Add New
Here is the model so you can see the format
http://INSERT_NAME_OF_YOUR_BLOG_HERE/wp-admin/post-new.php

Note that you can bookmark that link.

* Here’s the list of post workarounds courtesy of tpenguinltg all in one place.

2. To use the classic editor when you edit posts,
go the Posts -> All Posts menu, hover over the post title and click the Edit link.

http://INSERT_NAME_OF_YOUR_BLOG_HERE/wp-admin/edit.php

Note that you can bookmark that link.

3. To locate the legacy or classic stats pages:

If you go to the Classic Dashboard, and click the Site stats link there in the drop-down menu on the left hand side, you will be on the Classic stats pages.

These convenient legacy or classic stats page links are courtesy of musicdoc1

https://INSERT_NAME_OF_YOUR_BLOG_HERE.wordpress.com/wp-admin/index.php?page=stats

https://wordpress.com/my-stats/

On my Classic Dashboard I clicked the screen options link in the top right hand corner of the page. Under “Show on screen” I clicked to include “Stats” and I have another handy way to get the classic stats display now. Maybe you ought to try these 4 suggestions that do work well for me out.

4. The workarounds to locate the legacy or classic posts and stats pages courtesy of tpenguinltg are:

Dashboard message to use the new editor

The link to access the classic editor has been removed from the new editor and will not be restored.

The message we see on our dashboard quoted below will not be removed, but as my head is in the clouds and not in the sand, I just rise above it. ;)

There’s now an easier way to create on WordPress.com! Switch to the improved posting experience.

Update: Introducing: Our New, High-Speed Editor

Discussion

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Over to you.

Is your head in the clouds and above it all while using the classic editor?

Or are you still deep in the trenches navigating the new WordPress.com user interface pages?

* Free images courtesy of pixabay.

Related posts found in this blog:

WordPress Followers, Likes and Stats
Off-Site Activity and Stats Questions answered
Worrisome (or not) WordPress.com Reader Developments

76 thoughts on “Navigating the Classic WordPress.COM interface

    1. I know one thing and that is after about six months when I will be too busy, I will be looking for somewhere to move the blogs to. I suspect there will be many others also moving away from WordPress.com. I mean who needs this kind of hassle in their life. I don’t intend to allow them to spoil my enjoyment of my sites which is what they are currently doing with their inane changes.

      1. Many bloggers have already moved their content and there will be more who do likewise. However, I do not believe that that small outflow will rival the number of new registrations.

  1. I’m glad I found this. I was OK with old cookies until I had to clear them all for another problem sunday, then I discovered we no longer had an option to go back to Classic.

    Your

    http://INSERT_NAME_OF_YOUR_BLOG_HERE/wp-admin/edit.php

    saved the day or should I say our Classic new posts. But what a pain in the ass way to have to actually post them, having to book mark our WP blog.

    What is wrong with these people? I will never understand. When 90%+ of the people say they hate it, don’t want to use it yet they ignore all??? I just visited the forums, saw a lot of Delete my blog & Cancel my upgrade. Doesn’t that tell them something. In reality this is infuriating.

    I’m just glad they ending up allowing the gigya method (that was a work around too) to continue otherwise they would have destroyed my blog period, being 70% music.

    Blogging is suppose to be a happy thing, Word Press is making things more and more difficult which is sad. Anyway Thanks Timethief. I’ve bookmarked and added the link to email notebook in case computer goes.

    1. Hi there,
      I’m so glad you located this post when you needed to. Thanks do letting me know you did. Yes blogging is meant to be enjoyable and our desk top experience with the new editor hasn’t been a positive one thus fat. I am happy that we still have the classic user interface to use.

  2. Timethief, your thoughts and comments are always a blessing. I’ve been utterly frustrated by the new WordPress.com user interface and have been wondering what to do about it. I’ve got a bunch of client websites on wordpress.com and the thought of moving them all to self-hosted services makes me dizzy.

    My problem, though, is with my students. For the last three years I’ve taught an adult-ed beginner’s wordpress course using wordpress.com. The platform is easier to manage in a classroom and eliminates problems with security, as well as plug-in and theme compatibility. The new interface has everyone confused, including me. I’m building out a multi-site installation for another purpose, and may set up the ourse there. Hopefully that won’t run afoul of any school or program rules. I can’t really use wordpress.com anymore to teach. It’s too bloated, there are too many different interfaces and it’s too cluttered with everything under the sun. Very sad!

  3. Thank you very much for all your efforts with this. It is appreciated.

    Unfortunately I find this all too confusing and don’t cope well with confusion so I may have to leave WordPress with my seven blogs. I don’t know why they couldn’t just leave things as they were.

    Today I wanted to send someone a link to one of my articles and I must have clicked about 20 times to get to it. I do find it’s much easier to get to the edit page than it is to the page of the article itself where one can copy a link to send to someone. I find I’m going to the edit, making some ineffectual change and saving it, when I can click through to the article.

    If this is the best that WordPress can do then it is beyond pathetic.

    I hate that blue turquoise blue colour as well, it’s my less favourite colour of all an why should we have that foisted on us. Why not just stick to black and white?

    There are so many useful improvements that WordPress could have chosen to make, this shows a thorough contempt for their customers. Evidently they have already decided they don’t intend to listen to them anyway.

    1. It’s sad but true. The new editor is painfully lacking in features and the removal of of the link to classic editor in the new editor has caused many bloggers so much frustration. The fact that Staff will not restore it is mind-bending and especially aggravating when set beside that blah, blah, blah that they are aimed to improve our blogging experience. For over a year we have been used as BETA testing guinea pigs. Without doubt the continuation of this approach is disrespectful and unacceptable.

    2. Surely they can’t have anything but contempt for their customers as they’re not even giving a reason why they don’t put the “choose button” back.

  4. You are my hero. I suddenly found if I wanted to edit a reblog, or add a reblog into my theme’s “featured post” option, I was unable to do so because of this clusterfuck beep beep boop editor. Now I can do what I have been doing for 4 years, up until yesterday. Bless you and I worship at the alter of timethief. I’m too old to have children but if I ever have one, they get named after you.

  5. It’s good to know I can continue to access the classic editor! It’s encouraging, but also disheartening, to read the thread above. Encouraging that I’m not the only one befuddled and bemused by all these changes — most of which have not been in any way value added for me. Disheartening to learn how distant the developers and managers of WP seem to be from the community. WTF? Strange damn model for the operators of a *blogging* platform to have.

    I have a perception that longform blogging may be a dying thing, so maybe those running the place want to serve more a Facebook-Instagram-Twitter-Pinterest-Etblanketycetera sound-bite picture “pass it on” model. That seems the way of the world. (But who creates the content everyone else is passing around?)

    Drat. One more way to be the cranky “Get of my lawn you damn kids!” guy… I tell you, in my day we blogged barefoot in the snow. Uphill both ways!

    1. Hi there,

      I enjoyed reading your comment and the last line cracked me up as I have blogged for 10 years. I too am disheartened about this but I refuse to devote any more time to fretting about it. What will be will be and if I have to, then I can and I will move my content to self hosting.

    1. Hi Jean,

      Thanks for the positive feedback. I cannot imagine ever becoming a micro-blogger and using any mobile device to blog with. That said TPTB are there are apparently gearing up for legions out there who will do just that.

  6. Time thief … Your giraffes, the strong silent type, say it all. Huh.

    I missed being able to turn to you when this nonsense began. On the advice of another WP blogger, I wrote to the CEO about my disgruntlement with the changes. It didn’t change a thing. I understand this was done because the platform is geared toward mobile devices. But at least I let him know I was not happy. I also bookmarked several pages: Stats, Dashboard. I use the Classic mode for editing. Yes, it is far easier to manage and faster.

    Glad to have you back. ;-)

    1. Hi Judy,
      Hooray! You appreciated the giraffes and got my message too.
      I was so disappointed that only Heart to Harp got it. HUG

      Good for you for writing to TPTB. I am sure many bloggers wrote too but I was not among them. I spend so much time answering support forum questions that Staff are well aware of where I am at on any WordPress.COM changes and any point in time.

      As long as the classic editor is retained wordpress.com bloggers will not go ballistic. If it is removed the explosion of anger that will follow will be HUGE. Note: I am not quite retired yet and I have spent most of my adult life skillfully organizing legal protests of one kind or another. I might be tempted to crank it up rather than fading into the sunset.

  7. After a day or two of confusion and complaining, I headed over to the classic mode and stay there for the most part. Thanks for this post- this is vital information!

  8. I am so grateful for this post! Every change they make to the dashboard & the create/edit post process only makes things worse. Now we have to create text in a skinny little slot about 6 lines deep, which is bad enough, but when you then drop in a photo you can’t see it in context. Working with the latest version is like peering through a letter slot & trying to image the whole room. (I’ll stop now. Phew. Thank you for giving me a work-around.)

  9. So glad to come across this post! I did find how to get the classic back awhile ago, but every once in awhile something flips to the new and I was confused why that was happening. Now I know. I may eventually give the new version a go (there are some things I don’t like in the old version) but I tend to go with just enough knowledge to get by. I am saving this to put into my WP How TO book…

  10. Hi Timethief,
    Thanks for this detailed and enlightening post. I’ll postpone my comment till the weekend as I’m a little pressed in time just now, but I’d like to re-blog it, with your permission, of course. Could you, please, let me know if you agree, and how to re-blog it as I don’t seem to be able to find a button for that.
    Thanks again for the post,
    Pit

        1. I do not want to enable a reblog button on all posts and there is not an option to enable it only on some posts. In a new post in your own blog put an except from my post in quotes like this

          The good news is that we WordPress.com bloggers can make the choice not to put up with the hassle, frustration and waste of time involved in navigating and using the new editor and new stats pages, while they are under development. Read the full post Navigating the Classic WordPress.COM interface.”

  11. I love that you replied to my complaint. I love your advice. Now I am going to go try to change mine to classic. Big hugs to you

  12. Thank you Timethief for this post , I don’t understand why WordPress has changed the dashboard . I sent them a mail about that , because I think that this change has no interest for the webmasters , in particular the new stats page . I continue to use the classic editor to create posts and the classic stats page because it’s easier ans faster … Anyway , I hope that the changes will be ending soon !!!

    1. Hi there Walter,
      From what I can surmise the changes will not be ending any time soon and best wishes when it comes to getting a cogent response.

  13. Thanks for sharing this wonderful info. – can’t imagine WHY wordpress landed on the new posts page – the layout is terrible, among various other negatives!

    1. Hello there,

      As we weren’t provided with the courtesy of a meaningful and clear announcement of what to expect or a rationale for the changes we have been faced with one can only speculate. Surely to goodness no developer worth their wages can be so removed from end user experience that they don’t get why the new editor is a PITA for us to use. It may be convenient for those who are into selfie posting and reblogging type microbloggers but it’s not for those who are actually publishing longform posts.

      As for negatives I’m not usually into cursing but when I experienced that piece of crap only once that was it for me – I spouted every obscenity I knew. My little dogs ran off to hide in their beds.

  14. I’m change averse and I only write posts from a computer, never from my phone (I don’t even like commenting from my phone because I can’t easily edit what I write). I like the classic editing mode and use it through the WP Admin link. I also prefer the old Stats Page, but I’m not as passionate about it (maybe if I had higher stats and Google showed search terms I’d be more passionate). I keep thinking about using an off site editor but never get around to researching it.
    Was happy to see your post in my inbox, and the topic is spot on.

    1. Hi Jamie Ray,
      It’s good to know you were happy to get my post. I’m so busy these days as I returned to singing in choirs and I’m high on it. I’ve even had the time to read and knitting may be next lol :D.

      Thanks for weighing in here. I have to meet a subscriber of mine who likes using the new editor but assume there must be some. My email is full of complaints about it despite the fact I do not provide email support. I assume those bloggers emailing me will read this post and act on the contents.

      Happy spring!

  15. I’m on hiatus from the blog and most of the internet, but happened to see this in my e-mail . . . and made an exception (hopefully, the other blogs I normally read will not get jealous).

    Like you, I only use the classic stuff while I still can use it. I don’t much like Blogger, either, so when this goes to crap, as it looks like it might, I just plan to walk away from it.

    I’ve been talking with Squarespace, and it looks like I can build my own web page that mimics the blog and has an integrated image depository for less than I now pay for SmugMug and WordPress.

    I will probably miss out on all the community fueled traffic, but as 90% of that is mostly people trying to get me to click on their own blog and buy their stuff, and not actually reading my stuff, I won’t be missing much. My few loyal readers will likely follow, but if not . . . well, I’ve always said the blog was mostly for me.

    If WordPress keeps going the way they have, I’ll have to put my money where my mouth is.

    1. Hey there,
      Thanks so much for dropping in during your hiatus. :)

      I checked out Blogger, Squarespace, etc. you name it because I think I covered them all. I’m glad Squarespace will work for you if needs be.

      If WordPress keeps going the way they have, I’ll have to put my money where my mouth is.

      Me too but before I make that firm decision about moving content I’m not discounting simply removing my upgrades from my two blogs and walking away.

    1. Hi Nancy,
      We are well and had a lovely winter that was extremely mild up here in this neck of the woods. We felt so blessed that we kept our heads down and mouths closed as we watched the weather reports for other locations in horror.

      Best wishes always.

  16. I’m using all means at my disposal to continue using the “old” stuff as long as it’s reachable. When I’m finally forced to use the “new” (and I’ve no doubt that day will come despite WP’s promises), I will have no choice but to do so. (My blog is too big and too customized to move.) I just hope my blood pressure can take it. I had to mostly avoid the forum discussion because it was just making me angry and frustrated.

    1. Hi there,
      It’s so good to see your comment here.

      We are on the same page and that is why I have a contingency plan. This is a big blog and I have another. I do not relish the thought of moving either one.

      The threads are full of angry disenchanted WordPress.com blogger who used to be fans and just reading them can make my blood pressure rise.

      These questions below are courtesy of someone close to me with a blog here who is far too angry to post into forum threads:

      1. Who are these developers?
      2. What are their names?
      3. Are they on Automattic Staff or are they contractors?
      4. Do they really believe they can serve end user needs well without directly communicating with us? If they do then they deserve to be booted off Staff or have their contract ripped up so they can work somewhere on the end of a shovel.

      I asked the same first 3 questions in a very subdued way in a thread and a Happiness Engineer told me the developers are on Staff. Apparently the role of Happiness Engineers, who are few in number and who ought to be focused only on support delivery, also involves interpreting our user interface changes feedback and then sending it to the developers. I think that is ridiculous.

      1. I posted one comment that drew no response at all — the suggestion, bolstered by personal acquaintances, that the blame being heaped on developers was probably misplaced. Developers only develop what they are told to develop. The decisions we hate so much are likely being made by middle or upper management types.

        Also all the comments saying “We demand” and “Let’s petition,” etc., as if they/we actually had some leverage became frustrating. I don’t think the few hundred different commenters in the forum realize that WP has millions of users worldwide. Those on the forums are a drop in the bucket. A very large bucket.

        1. I know exactly what you mean and I agree with you. It’s TPTB that assign the work and petitions are useless. In the case of the one user created poll that exists it’s biased.

          Note this thread and the dates in it as well as the comments in the thread. https://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic/wordpresscom-please-stop-spamming-messages-to-use-the-new-system?replies=22

          I began with a gravatar that was my image. I changed it to a walking away giving you my back image. Now I’ve changed it again to this head in the clouds and rising above it all image.

  17. Thanks for the advice, Timethief. I figured out the work-arounds on my own. But I’m still completely confused as to why WordPress is so insistent on removing the easy way to access the classic editor. It’s clearly a priority — for ease of usage, speed and flexibility — for many, many users. Has there been any rational explanation as to why that simple link back to the classic editor was removed? If so, why not?

    1. Hi Dan,
      It’s good to connect again and I’m not surprised that you figured out the workarounds on your own. There has been no rationale provided for the link removal from the new editor to the classic editor, even after a month of threads requesting one, and though one of the threads had over 940 comments. I suspect the intent of having new users use the new editor would be defeated if the link to the classic editor was restored to the new editor.

  18. Hi TimeThief, It was good to read your post and comments.
    I dont understand what is going on with wordpress so I can only follow any leads or information you give out. I prefer to blog and read from my laptop but am reading your blog on my phone because I am on Easter Holidays. My son set a big screen TV up to my laptop which makes the blogs look even more wonderful.

    1. I don’t believe any of us bloggers truly understand what’s going on. Staff have spent the last 9 years changing this, that and the other without providing us with prior notification. Now they have undertaken a massive project and the bloggers affected by the changes are extremely angry about being kept in the dark and being used a guinea pigs for BETA testing. It will take a great deal of TLC to ever get back a tiny bit of the trust they have lost so I expect they will hire a UI specialist. Hopefully, that person will be wise to the fact that baffle-gab will not cut it when it comes to pacifying angry users.

      1. I certainly hope so! I’ve actually been wondering if company investors and money people are driving these changes?

  19. [ Laughs ] I have been protesting silently by posting more on Blogger.

    Anyway, I think that WordPress should have alerted us before they made those changes.

    What happened to something known as “Feedback”?

    Did they consider for one moment that they can make changes without tampering with the “Editor”?

    I prefer the classic editor, because it loads faster than the new one and it is a 100 times easier to use.

    By the way, I missed you and your amazing blogging advice.

    1. Hi there,
      Your comment also made me laugh out loud.

      [Laughs ] I have been protesting silently by posting more on Blogger.

      I’m with you on using the classic editor. It loads faster, has more features, has post revisions and is easy to use.

      Who knows what’s next? Tomorrow we may wake up and find we are once again unwitting and unwilling guinea pigs who haven’t been informed that we are unofficial BETA testers or this or that or whatever. The way we end users have been treated sucks! It’s past time for Automattic to hire a User Interface specialist to head the team and I believe they will do that very soon.

  20. Did you see that the happiness engineer has closed off comments because of abuse that “violates our Code of Conduct” ? How can people be so rude – it’s just a blog, not the destruction of wildlife!

    1. I am happy it was closed, David. I was among the rude. I was the only person who openly shared their process from anger to acceptance and forming a contingency plan in that and in other similar threads. The others apparently went into a “I hate it” type of stall mode and did not go through any process aside from participating in a bogus, biased poll that I refused to vote in or link to.

      I became the only open dissenter in that thread. After 1 month of reading what hand-wringers, who did not act to care of themselves but instead continued to devote time in thread after thread by posting just to bitch and moan, and/or to link drop to a biased poll in I did become rude and I did apologize. Some of my comments and others comments were removed. Big deal. (I have copies of them all.)

      At this point in time I am in the bring it! stage. Despite my mindful commitment to compassion, and the fact I do not hate, every day and in every support thread that the wailers start wailing in yet again, I indulge myself in a few seconds of stress relief by humming “if I had a rocket launcher…” and then I move on and help the solution orientated bloggers in other threads.

      1. Maybe it’s about managing expectations. I don’t really know where WP are going with this when they talk about one central hub.

        Plainly, blogging from a phone with the WP app is not the same as blogging from the desktop – and I do both.

        I guess more than anything, I want the admin panel of whatever system to get out of my way and be as invisible as possible.

        I understand where you are coming from with the bookmarks, and it’s a good solution – but that’s what it is – a solution to deal with a system that is not as easy to use as it once was.

        And revolutions generally come when rising expectations are suddenly reversed.

        In the back of my mind I am thinking that as long as they don’t do this to self-hosted admin panels, I can live with it.

        Nice to hear from you with a post, by the way :-)

        1. You are right. Yes, it’s about expectations. Bloggers do not expect to wake up and find that what used to be an easy Sunday ride on a neighborhood trail on a well trained mount, has turned into a wild ride on a new thoroughbred in training through a steeplechase course full of obstacles and annoyances like missing features, and scrolling and clicking of multiple links to complete simple tasks they did before with full features, without obstacles, and without scrolling at all or clicking more than a single link.

          I think that this may help us understand what they are aiming for Redesigning WordPress.com

          I recall the shift we made via crazy horse to 2.5 or was it 2.7?

          It’s always good to hear from you David. I’m glad you still read my posts. It may not be until late summer or even fall until I am fully retired and have time to devote to blogging regularly again. Such is the life of self-employed person who does not have a company pension to rely on.

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