For the record: I love WordPress ever since I started using it which was not long after WordPress.com went public. WordPress.com has evolved quite a lot over time and added many new features which were always nice to discover. That has changed a little the last few weeks if you ask me.
I wrote earlier about Akismet losing its edge but that seemed to have been just a hickup like Matt confirmed in the comments. For the blogs on WordPress.com at least, all went back to normal which is good.
At the time that WordPress.com started with the system of upgrades I thought they had found the ideal road between the ‘old’ WordPress.com and the self hosted version. They added things such as domain support, custom CSS or extra GB space upgrades. And all of this for a few credits (or dollars) only. This is an interesting concept and offers users such as myself the ability to tune this blog a bit more without having to go ‘all the way’ by hosting it all myself. I don’t want to host myself as it offers an extra set of questions and issues that I don’t even want to think about.
Now instead of continuing that way, I get the feeling they changed strategy and I don’t really understand why. Two weeks ago they added WordPress Video which would allow you to host Videos on WordPress and use their native player. Now why would I use that? Why didn’t they just add support for existing video services (next to YouTube, Google Video and Dailymotion that they support right now). Think of Soapbox, Revver, …
Today WordPress.com stopped their feed stats feature (or at least put it on hold) because they didn’t feel it was totally right (it was beta so I’m ok with that) and it wasn’t used enough apparently. And although I’ll miss that I can somehow relate to this decision, I like it when people don’t just launch stuff, when they want it to be good. But my question would be: why not offer another solution then? Looking at the ‘upgrade strategy’ you could easily implement an upgrade by which people could replace the default WordPress RSS feed by a Feedburner feed for instance… and yes I would buy 15 credits for that.
My 2 cents. Matt?