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Important Announcement: Techdirt Is Migrating To A New Platform

UPDATE: If you’re reading this, you’re looking at the new Techdirt! If you have an account, you will need to reset your password before logging in. You may experience some bugs and slow performance for the next several hours while we complete the migration. Contact us if you notice any major issues.

Almost since its inception, Techdirt has been run on a custom content management system that we’ve built, expanded, and maintained ourselves. Once upon a time this had its advantages, but lately it’s been an obstacle to developing the new features and improvements we’d like to add for our readers. So for the past two years we’ve been working on a huge project: migrating the entire site, and its history of over 75,000 posts and millions of comments, to WordPress — and now we’re ready to make the switch. We’ve worked hard to ensure the transition is as seamless as possible, but there will be a few changes, and those of you with accounts will need to reset your passwords. This post outlines what’s going to happen during the transition this weekend, and what you can expect to see when the site changes some time this Sunday evening.

First of all, a note about what this is not: it’s not a Techdirt redesign. For the time being, the changes are primarily on the back-end and the site will look and work just the way it does now with only a few exceptions, the biggest of which is a significant overhaul and upgrade to the comments section. That’s the one part of the site that will look quite different, and work much better: it can now handle deeply-nested threads without becoming unreadable, and there’s a handy new tool for navigating lengthy comment sections. All the features you’re used to, like Funny/Insightful voting, reporting, and First Word/Last Word will continue to work just as they do now.

Another important note is that all posts and comments are being retained, and all old post URLs will continue to work. It was extremely important to us that we not lose any content, or break any links — even though the URL structure for posts is changing, old links will continue to work just fine and be redirected to the appropriate page.

And, of course, all user accounts and membership subscriptions are being retained as well. However, as noted, all users will have to reset their passwords before logging in to the new system. It’s also possible that you might have to reset your display name, profile picture, and account preferences, though we’ve tried to ensure that these things are all properly copied as well. We’ll make sure there’s a prominent notice on Techdirt reminding you once the switch is complete.

Amidst all this, there will likely be some unforeseen hiccups. We’ll have prominent links to our contact form, and a special feedback category for issues with the website migration, for you to report any problems with your own account or the site in general. This is a massive migration and we’re hopeful that problems will be minimal, but please bear with us as we work to fix anything that does go wrong!

As for the migration itself, shortly after this post we’ll be locking down Techdirt for a few days — you’ll still be able to read and navigate the site, but you won’t be able to submit comments or create new accounts, and any comment votes or changes to user preferences will not be saved. We also won’t be publishing the normal weekend posts. New membership subscription purchases will still be accepted and recorded, but won’t be activated until Monday when the new site is live.

We’re extremely excited to be finally making this change — it makes Techdirt much more manageable and maintainable for our small team, and lays the foundation for the site to improve and grow in the future. Stay tuned for another announcement when the new site is live, and thanks in advance to all our readers for your patience and support as we complete this migration.

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Author: Leigh Beadon

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