What’s it like to enter the WordPress community media space, especially as the editor of a publication with many voices, personalities, and perspectives?
Estimated reading time: 38 minutes
My friend and dialogue partner, Nyasha Green, is six months into her role as Editorial Director at MasterWP, so today we’re talking about what that’s been like for Ny, what she’s learned, and how we look at the WordPress media space we both work in.
Unsurprisingly we talk about conflict, communication, personality, and the importance of in-person events. That brings up WCUS — a first for both of us — where we’ll meet each other and a lot of people we’ve only known remotely. It also sounds like I might get roped into a karaoke duet. (Not if I can help it.)
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Mentioned in the Show
- Six Months of MasterWP from Nyasha’s View
- The Danger of Avoiding Conflict — Patrick Lencioni
- WordCamp US
- Nyasha Green, Editorial Director at MasterWP (Twitter)
- Dan Knauss, Editor for Post Status (Twitter)
- Olivia Bisset, Web Producer intern for Post Status (Twitter)
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Dan Knauss: [00:00:00] Hey NY, how are you doing today?
Nyasha Green: Hey, Dan, I’m doing well. How are you?
Dan Knauss: Good. Good. Pretty good for, uh, winding in towards the end of the week. I know. Um, let’s see, your, your newsletter from master VP goes out Tuesday in our productions Friday. So maybe you can, it goes out Wednesday. Oh Wednesday now. Okay. Yeah.
Tuesday, Tuesdays. You’re getting it already. Yeah. Okay. So you’re kind of, is this the down slope for you? easier time,
Nyasha Green: eh, yeah, it is. It is. The beginning of the week is always like, alright, make sure everything’s together. And then it’s like, ah, you know, breathe and like can hop in and getting ready for next week.
So it definitely is. And it’s almost Friday. Yeah. All good news.
Dan Knauss: yeah, for us it’s like, yeah, it’s the, the high, when you get it all done on, on Friday and then the weekend. So, um, you’ve been at it for about six months. I read your your six month. Article, uh, post [00:01:00] there and reflection on all the stuff you, you guys have done in that time.
Um, yeah. How are you, how are you feeling about, um, about not just doing master WP, but this is kind of a new thing for you jumping straight into the, um, the WordPress community as someone who’s, um, you know, come, come in from, uh, not that, not that long ago for the first. .
Nyasha Green: Yeah. So, um, I’ve had, I have a experience in WordPress, so I’ve been coding in WordPress for a couple years.
Um, I’ve been writing and editing for what 16 years. Um, and just, yeah, putting it all together to be like a part of the community to be a part of the writing, to be a part of, you know, everything that’s going on. Um, it has been. Fun. I don’t wanna say that first. It’s been very fun. Um, it’s also been very entertaining.
it’s been [00:02:00] very interesting. Um, Hmm. It’s been. Oh, oh, it’s been just a journey. And, um, it’s just been six months, but I’ve learned a lot. I’ve met a lot of really good people and I’ve got to do, I’ve gotten to do a lot of really cool things. Um, I’m really excited for the rest of this, the next six months. I’m just I’m ready for that year article, like to just talk about everything we did in a year, um, But, um, I think the most interesting thing about it is, um, just, just getting to know so many people in the community, not just in the community, because like I was, I’ve been in the community for years as a coder, but I haven’t been like, you know, an active participant in like, as far as meeting people.
So meeting active people in the community has been really awesome.
Dan Knauss: Yeah, that’s really different. Isn’t it? I, I relate. It’s a lot. I feel, um, I, I feel similarly because despite going back early long way with open source and, and WordPress [00:03:00] site, I probably got more involved long ago in other communities and I’ve stayed.
Stayed for a long time in a, you know, relatively quiet, neutral space relative to, to post status and, and, um, and just, um, my own work for a long time. But it’s, yeah, it’s relatively recently that my role has kind of expanded and changed and re not, I wouldn’t say required, but made it natural to, um, and if not, Necessary to, uh, you know, be more engaged in social media and, um, and just, yeah, the kind of networking that, that comes around from that and the, the way that people, uh, connect with you more when you’re, you’re taking more of a public role.
Um, yeah. There’s ups and downs, ups and downs to that. How, how do you, what, what do you see the pros and cons [00:04:00] or what have been the highs and lows for you?
Nyasha Green: Um, the pros would be the people I’ve met, um, as a relative newcomer to the community and someone that’s trying to get more people in, um, being, you know, editorial director of master WP has opened me to so many resources.
There are so many people that want to help in this community. And I feel like that does not, nobody really talks about that. That doesn’t, uh, that never makes it out of the screams. Drama whatever’s going on that week in WordPress, but there are so many people that want to help the community, especially newbies, but they don’t know how, or they they’re more.
So I will, I have resources for you to help, which is still helping. And I was able to connect with a lot of people. Um, I have been given a lot of resources for just starting my own word, press meetups in my city. I was just living in and the city I’m doing now. People just they’ve read and they’ve seen things I’ve [00:05:00] doing they’re let me start over.
They’ve read things I’ve written and they’ve seen things I’m doing and that spurred them to help. So it’s been mostly positive. Um, for me. Great. Um, some of the cons is, um, something I, I’m not new to leadership. I’m not new to taking ownership of things. I’ve had my own business before, things like that. Um, I guess the biggest thing for me is when master WP gets negative, press.
that’s all people wanna talk about to me. Uh, if they talk about that, amongs the self that’s, whatever that’s it’s okay. But when lots of really positive things happen, like I said, like me gaining these resources, us having, helping new people get into the community, people, uh, you know, changing their tune on things.
They just didn’t have information about which we’ve, we’ve been told all of us that that’s helped at least someone, no, it is nothing. Nobody really wants to talk about it. And it could be because negative stuff, you know, people aren’t louder when they’re negative. Versus they’re a little bit more [00:06:00] quiet when they’re positive, but that’s something that it didn’t bother me at first, but it was overwhelming after a little while.
Mm. Because. I’m a person, like if it’s something’s negative, that’s going on, I would like to work with you on it. But I quickly discovered a lot of people don’t want that. They just wanna be negative and, you know, yeah. So navigating that’s been interesting. Um, and then we, we, we shifted a lot. Master WP is completely different than what it was under.
Um, the old ownership. And I think a lot of people had a problem with that as well. Um, especially when we talked about race and diversity and oh, my favorite giving people money. I understand that. Cuz I talk about that in regular life. I’ve been a community organizer for years. I do community service. Um, and I don’t, I don’t have to answer to an organization to do that.
I do stuff out of my own pocket. That’s how I am. So this stuff is not new to me. Um, but it’s, it’s interesting to see people [00:07:00] take on those. You shouldn’t be helping people or you shouldn’t be doing. In a space where they constantly is, need a need for help. So I’ve, I’ve learned a lot. It’s it’s it helps me ponder and wonder.
And, um, I, I don’t know. I’m just, I’m very interested to see what else I learned because six months, depending on who you talk to is not a long time. I don’t feel like that was a long time, but I poof I’ve learned a lot. So this year should be pretty epic.
Dan Knauss: yeah. You really jump right in and yeah, when you do so.
Public like that. And you’re, you’re putting out the kind of material you do on, um, writing and, and podcasting mm-hmm um, yeah, you get, you get a lot, learn a lot from getting a lot of reactions fast and when you become the news it’s, it’s not, not awesome. I have a little experience with that. But yeah, no one can really control the message all the time.
And, [00:08:00] uh, being able to roll with that is, is good. But, um, yeah, I hope the, the positives outweigh the negatives. Where, where do you think the, um, some of the pushback or raised hackles? Come from, is it just, who are you to say, just where does this new, you know, just reaction of, of established or familiar, um, people who are familiar with the space and, and feel really, um, comfortable in it, the way it is.
And then I don’t know who you are. You just come out of, you know, you’re offering new perspectives and, you know, different, different takes on things or, um, is that. Is that just kind of the newcomer, um, challenge that I don’t know, human social groups always seem to, to
Nyasha Green: have. Oh, I would be surprised if that wasn’t playing a part into it.
I mean, because, um, some people I have talked [00:09:00] with interviewed, you know, written to they’ve written to me, you know, they’ve been in this community like. Years and years while I might have been still been in high school, things like that. So I definitely, I, I could see some of that. Definitely. Um, I guess the big thing is nobody really addresses a lot of negative issues with me, which, which I’m totally prepared for as editorial director.
I it’s, it’s always secondhand stuff. And it’s like, how do you address that? I’m one of these people, like I said, I address things and that people take that in a negative way. I don’t understand that. Like I. I have always been able to communicate with people. If there’s a issue, I think we can solve it if we talk about it.
But I don’t think a lot of people have that point of view. They don’t want to talk, they don’t wanna solve issues. They just want you to know they are not feeling it. And that’s also fun. But, you know, as a person who’s a doer, I can only accept so much of that, you know, send it to me, but what do you want me to do with it after a while it’s gonna be my response.
Um, so it, [00:10:00] you know, there. I’m a newbie, you know, we’re new, I guess we’re as a whole newish people on the scene. Um, although Rob and Brian and a lot of our, uh, developers have been in WordPress years. Mm-hmm um, there’s also I don’t know what I I’ll call it. I always try to make up my own names for things.
Um, it’s getting into the group. I guess liking what everyone else likes and hating what everyone else hates, which we, we won’t do. And master WP is right. Individual people. We, we also, that’s a big issue too. We get, if Rob has an issue on something, that means we all think it, if Brian has an issue on something that makes we all think it, if I have an issue with something that means we all think it and, um, that’s not true at all.
Yeah. We are very open and diverse about that, but that, that gets lost too. So I think it’s. , you know, we’re not as a whole waiting and liking the right things. I can tell you as a person, an individual that will never be me. I’ve never been able to do that. [00:11:00] Friends, family work. Yeah. I’ve never been able to do that.
So it won’t be me, but, um, I think that plays a part into it too. And then I just think, you know, We’re saying things that some people have told me privately, they wanna say, but they can’t. So it’s a number of things which I am so interested and totally down to explore in the next six months.
Dan Knauss: That’s good curiosity.
helps, especially with, with negatives. Um, yeah. Why in, instead of just hardening up or closing off or writing people off, um, there’s always something to learn. You know, it occurred to me listening. what you’re, um, saying there about a publication with a lot of voices. Mm-hmm um, it occurs to me that there isn’t we, and we talk about this a lot, the WordPress news space or whatever you want to call it.
It’s pretty small. Mm-hmm and um, most of the people in it are, you know, we’re pretty [00:12:00] small team at post status, but, um, there’s, there’s multiple voices and we, we aspire to. To have that, um, kind of sense of dialogue, but a lot of people are just doing, you know, it’s one, one person, one personality. And so you, you get kind of used to their perspective on things mm-hmm , mm-hmm and maybe there’s not as much of a familiarity with, um, in, in the space with, um, Hey, this is a publication where we actually want to have a lot of D.
People and different diversity of views and they may not stack up or align and it’s not planned. It’s not to, to do so. It’s not meant to, um, push a certain stance, but yeah, inevitably there are some kind of ranges of opinion that a, a publication will kind of get known, known for. Mm-hmm um, I wonder if that’s just too new of a thing.
People don’t [00:13:00] distinguish between, oh, who wrote this? Who wrote that? Um, yeah, I think that can, that can easily be part of it, but, um,
Nyasha Green: you know, I didn’t, you pray up a good point. I didn’t, I, I did not. And we have talked about this, but I never really, I didn’t, I didn’t think about that. You just like enlighten me at that moment.
There are, uh, a lot of publications where it’s not as many people. Getting a platform to talk about this many different things. So that could be very confusing to readers and people consuming our media. And that’s. Thank you. That’s something we need to work on.
Dan Knauss: Thank you. Yeah. And, and a lot of, a lot of those individual voices have kind of been typecast, maybe unfairly.
I think sometimes even individuals change their views, moderate them, come to new opinions and things. But over time people tend, oh, this podcast, he thinks this way, she, she looks that way. [00:14:00] Um, That might be some of it. And, and also everyone’s just guilty going so fast, having so much going by how, how deeply do we read or listen to things?
Yes. And we just kinda box people up quickly. Yes. Um, I, I, I, I think we’re in personality. We’re probably a bit alike in that, you know, liking a certain amount of. Friction and difference to have some have things to talk about, um, to learn from something that’s not familiar or someone who doesn’t agree with you.
Oh yeah. Um, yeah. And you guys actually, you know, pay for advertise that you want, you disagree with this. You, we pay you just as much to write for us.
Nyasha Green: yeah. Come pay. We’ll pay you $300 an article to come disagree with us and yeah. S I’m hearing again, secondhand. So many people have these disagreements and I’m like, why not get, get paid for it?
That’s my dream to go disagree with people and get paid for it. Like if [00:15:00] someone had given me this opportunity when I was younger, I probably would be a lawyer because I would be so good at arguing with people. but, uh, yeah, we do because we do, we want to. Opposing views. Like we don’t all, and we all don’t agree with each other, you know?
Um, I love BTS. Brian does it. Um, Rob has his views on multisite. I’m indifferent to it. , you know, we, but we all get labeled, like, you know, oh, if that’s Rob’s idea, then it’s our idea. And I, I don’t completely blame the community for that because that’s life. Right. You know, when you think about, well, it’s you think about like companies, sometimes companies get, um, mislabeled.
Like, I, I like to use the New York times as an example. Like the New York times is pretty progressive. Most of the time left leaning, in my opinion, that’s subjective. And they will run op-eds with conservative point of views and Republicans and things like that. And they get crucified and it’s like, everybody forgets that , they’re running different opinions all the [00:16:00] time.
So, you know, I, I think that’s that’s life sometimes too, so I don’t take it personally. And, um, right. It’s something we can always work on. I’m always open to working on things. Yeah. And that’s
Dan Knauss: what you get from a democratized publication space that no, one’s able to squash out one particular voice and, and ideally it, they can be in some kind of productive dialogue with each other.
You know, I, I think too listening to if, if you go, if your publication is, and, and a lot of, a lot of the. WordPress space is, is geared towards what’s the drama of the day or what’s, you know, what’s the controversy up here. The, um, I wonder how much of it has to do with like energy levels, cause that stuff can raise energy and levels, expenditure and anxiety.
Um, and, and it also, there’s a cognitive load to who is this? Who wrote this? Do I know them? Who are, you know, there’s all this, it, it takes real effort to. To make that three dimensional to [00:17:00] make that connect, um, more deeply. And, and I think that’s just what happens on the, on the internet, unless you make the effort or, you know, you meet it at word camp or something, something like that.
You don’t, you don’t have context. And, um, I understand you don’t want to deal with, um, a lot of noise some of the time. And, um, since I’m not really running. Opinion or oriented, um, publication and actually going slow and focusing on more business pragmatics, a lot of the time and avoiding drama. That’s, that’s kind of what our longstanding, um, Attributes that people like that I
Nyasha Green: thinks for the special sauce where’s in that Dan where’s oh, actually life is meant to be fun.
I [00:18:00] like to have fun. risk. Oh,
Dan Knauss: it’s in, it’s in there. I think it, I think it just comes SL it comes slower and. When you’re able to do more listening and, and cover a lot of things, not just like what is going on in the core project, but, or automatic, but there’s a whole ecosystem. There’s little fish and big fish.
Um, there’s middle, middle sized ones. There’s, there’s all these different, um, concerns around the. The commons around, uh, WordPress that everyone has in common as they’re what they’re basing their business on in some way. So I don’t know. I don’t, I don’t, I don’t, I think that’s fun too. It’s a different kind though.
and, and it doesn’t, uh, it’s, it’s definitely, um, definitely a different maintains, a different mood. Um, but. [00:19:00] Yeah. What do do you, do you think that there’s a, there’s a, a regular current, we need to maintain in this space where there’s critical questioning, um, a kind of dialogue going on that, um, that hits maybe some of the bigger, um, Bigger tougher questions.
Nyasha Green: Nope. I think people should be able to say whatever they want, you know, um, as long as it’s not hate speech and no one yells bomb in a crowded theater, that’s my opinion on that. Um, no, one’s even when. Profess your love of things. People are going to disagree. I think no matter what you write, people are going to dis disagree.
And as you said, post status, you know, y’all, y’all have a pretty neutral stance on things and y’all do a good job of it. And people still disagree with you. So, oh yeah. Um, no, I mean, you know, so it’s like, there’s no ways to avoid it. I don’t think there’s a plan for that, but, um, I don’t, I don’t, I don’t [00:20:00] know the, I guess I’m ponding that answer as well.
And that’s something I’m thinking about, but until then, I’m not going to, you know, limit anyone. I want them to speak about everything. If we could talk about everything everywhere all at once, I would love that, but being realistic, you know?
Dan Knauss: Right. Yeah. I wasn’t suggesting it’d be a limit limited in some way, but that, um, just the, the, this, the public, the WordPress public sphere, I say sometimes, you know, kind of the, the debate, um, arena, the public square it’s.
It’s not always in the greatest shape, especially now you might, might, might exist. um, is there, is there work to be done there where there are unavoidable differences, disagreements, big thorny questions that do need to be maintain? Yeah. There [00:21:00] needs to be some dialogue maintained about those. And is that kind of more, what you’re you’re tackling.
Nyasha Green: Um, honestly, no. Um, but because this is the thing and I, I’m not just, just saying it for you. It’s something I had to work with too. We’re all. We’re all from different places. We have different cultural backgrounds and we have different, even if we have the same cultural background, we have different upbringings.
We’re different people. I don’t think there’s going to be a uniform way to do that with so many different personalities. I’m not saying, you know, if it could be done. Sure. I just don’t think it can be done. Um, we’re also different. And I think honestly, if we embrace that more people wouldn’t be, as you know, what’s the word.
it wouldn’t come off as, um, antagonistic. Is that a word? Did I make that up? Yeah. Yeah. I think people wouldn’t be, be like that, but it’s, it’s like, okay, this person is this type of way. And we’re just gonna write [00:22:00] them off as oh, that’s them? No, let’s, let’s bring ’em in. Let’s see why they’re that way let’s work together in this, this, this community, like a community should, um, if we’re a community, a community.
They take, they take care of each other, they’re they, you know, even their craziest member. Well, I gotta stop saying that. Um, even their members that we think are eccentric or we think are not like us, we take care of our, we take care of our own. And, um, I don’t see that in the WordPress community. I see. Oh, that’s just the way they are when that person could be one of the greatest people you’ve ever made in your life.
If you gave it a chance, um, or they could be horrible, but you know, what are we gonna do? We’re gonna try. We’re gonna not try. We’re gonna give. Are we a community or not?
Dan Knauss: Yeah, that, that’s kind of what I mean, like, do you see yourself as kind of in your mission to, to try to create an inclusive space?
That’s not one person or one, you know, organization or just one particular agenda and on any issue, [00:23:00] but, um, open kind of the open stage, um, ally, ally kind of brought that up. What was the mm-hmm the, um, podcast episode she did recently where. She talked, she called it debate club, which to me sounds a little little on the antagonistic side of, and she meant it more on, you know, like back in the olden days when maybe high, high school debate clubs were, were, uh, not, not as, uh, intense as I imagine they might be now.
Um, just a space where, where you can, um, you. You can try out different ideas and it’s, you know, it’s not to be taken personally like this is, we’re gonna try to, what’s the best case you can make for this. What’s the best way to look at this issue. And, and then how does someone who totally takes it another way?
How do they respond to it? Is that the kind of, would that be like a healthy, healthy thing [00:24:00] that you guys are shooting?
Nyasha Green: we don’t have a uniform goal. So that’s, that’s again, a thing like is master WP. Doesn’t have a, a, a one thing we’re all trying to do. Um, so I mean, if you’re asking me personally, um, I, again, I don’t think that’s possible because the people are so different and, um, I wanna just spin that on. Like, I’m not saying like, everybody is like so different from me and I just feel overwhelmed.
Like I meet a. Uh, kindred spirits in the community. Um, but it’s just like, even when you just said like, you know, debate club was kind of harsh, that was like probably the most, I think, polite thing you can say. I can’t think of anything polite or to say and that’s not anything wrong with you. That’s just something I have to look at.
Like, um, I try to, I’m trying to make my language more accessible. Like not say things like crazy, like it tears me up to say that like, so, you know, that’s something, um, I think, you know, I wanna work on, but also like I [00:25:00] don’t, I don’t know. That’s something I’ve never thought about. That’s a that’s Ally’s idea and, you know, ally works with master WP, but we, we haven’t talked about that as a whole, as master WP because master WP lets everybody express themselves and be their own person and have their own ideas.
Um, Not saying no one else does, but yeah. Um, I don’t think it’s possible me. Naisha saying that now the rest of my team may have different thoughts on that. And actually I think that’s really awesome. And I want to talk to Allie about it. I wanna talk to my team about it. So, um, yeah, I’ll definitely talk to them about it, but, um, I just don’t see it as possible.
I also don’t see it as necessary. Um, I don’t, I don’t, people are always going to yell and Twitter has given people the ability to yell from their homes. Like, you know, it’s people who would yell at about stuff and complain and say things. They would never say if they had to say it in public, Twitter has given them that space and right.
We can’t really take it away. Um, so I don’t know Dan, to answer your question. I don’t think it’ll work, but I don’t, I don’t like saying nothing will work. I think everything should at least be [00:26:00] tried. Hmm.
Dan Knauss: Well, I think, yeah, the more good models there are, um, the better, yeah, like checking, checking ourselves on the, what seems like crazy far out irrational, extreme opinion.
I mean, that’s just, so that’s such a common feature of when things get bad in a, in a community, um, inability to talk because. You’re, you know, some other perspective is just so far, far out. And, uh, that, that may be the case. Maybe things are, you know, really that broken sometimes. But I would like to think, and I, I don’t think they are in, um, something like in an open source community like WordPress.
Um, you just kind of have to give people that, that tolerance. Forbearance is a good word. Um, and step back from, you know, recognizing this, okay. I don’t know where they’re coming [00:27:00] from. This doesn’t make sense. I’m gonna try to find out, I’m gonna try to understand it from their point of view rather than oh yeah.
You know, call it just nuts. Um, yeah, I think that’s hard to do when we don’t, we don’t have a space where that, um, seems to happen. A lot. And it reminds me, it actually reminds me of way back when I did a lot with Jula kind of when they’re at their high point and then over it, um, it’s a lot, it was a lot similar to WordPress in that, um, They developed a, a third party plugin theme ecosystem is where there are a lot of people making good money and agencies and so on, and who really feel in invested in, in the product and then very, sometimes alienated from where it’s going and how decisions get made and so on.
Um, and. That kind of language emerged, like just complete your perspective is so far out from mine clearly. , [00:28:00] it’s, it’s, um, not worth any time to try to understand. And yeah. Do you see that kind of thing going on? Is that something we can help in, in some way, is that just helped by letting more people. Have the
Nyasha Green: floor, more people need to be elevated in the community.
Yes. Um, I get asked to do a lot of podcasts and things, you know, like what we’re doing now. Sometimes I just say no, because I don’t think I should be the only voice. I don’t think I should be the only one talking for master WP. I don’t think I should be the. No, nobody’s like done this, but in, uh, outside of nobody’s done this in the WordPress community, but outside of the WordPress community, I don’t think I should be the black person you go to talk to about, about black issues.
I think, um, Once I, I, you know, I, I have my voice and if I wanna say something and if I wanna talk to people, I can do it. Um, but other than that, I think we should be elevating people. I think if the community was a little bit more diverse, I know I say that all the [00:29:00] time, people would know how to deal with opposing opinions, from different people who may be from different backgrounds.
I see that I see it as diversity issue. I see some of the same people who click together, not agreeing with some of the other people who were the same and click together. And I’m like, if you guys didn’t do that, maybe you wouldn’t be so upset all the time, but I don’t know. What do I know? I’m new. I’m I’m joking.
But, um, I guess would the, would there be a space where everybody could just be, not use bad language or threatening language and it’d be like a little safer space for people. Again, culturally, I, I think that’s impossible. Um, because you know, my, you could disagree with me as long as you don’t cuss at me or yell at me.
You can disagree with me all day, but that’s not with other people. It’s like, you can’t use certain word and completely understandable. You can’t use certain words with me. You do that. That’s that’s, that’s why I tap out. We have to learn that about each other. And if like, if [00:30:00] nobody’s willing to learn that, and I mean, on both sides of people who don’t want you to use any strong language, don’t wanna learn that about other people.
That, you know, strong language is not a big red flag to them. And I think people are misunderstanding each other. They’re like, wow, he’s, you know, they are just so threatening toward me. And they’re like, I thought we were having a regular conversation or maybe on the other side of that, like, you know, I, I just it’s people need to talk to each other.
I think it’s communication problem. It’s a diversity problem. It’s communication problem. If we want those spaces to happen, people need to talk to each other. I don’t see a lot of people talking to each other in the C. unless they agree with each other and that’s bad in any community,
Dan Knauss: right? Yeah. The absence of, of any, any friction there, it’s, it’s a tough mm-hmm seeming paradox of the absence of, of conflict tends to indicate a problem because people are just individuals and, and different and you, and you need that.
You need questions and [00:31:00] friction to be. To come up with better ideas and to grow, to grow, to see things that you didn’t wouldn’t otherwise see. And, and if you’re repressing all of that, it’s gonna blow up some more dysfunctional way. Oh yeah. So yeah, the high conflict personality, I think in. Psychology is, is actually someone who, who just doesn’t doesn’t have any repertoire of responses to it.
It’s a normal part of life and they try to avoid it and try to suppress it. And that actually causes more conflict than they just don’t have the tools to, um, to deal with it.
Nyasha Green: Do you think, uh, maybe I, I have a question. I’m sorry. You said high conflict people. Yeah. Right. Who, what would, uh, be your definition of high conflict people?
And then I’ll tell you mine, and then I can tell you, and then we can talk. Um,
Dan Knauss: I think, I think the psychological model, um, that I dimly have read about is, um, it, you, it is [00:32:00] just the simple definition would be someone who ends up in conflict a lot. Um, and maybe they don’t know why , um, mm-hmm they may not think they are because they’re trying to avoid it all the time.
Mm-hmm and. you know, like, um, say like the worst example would be like, you know, estrangement in a family or something like that. Mm-hmm so these two people don’t talk mm-hmm at all. That’s not a condition of detachment or peace. Uh it’s a, it’s a cold, it’s a simmering thing that will go off as soon as they get together or something triggers it.
So mm-hmm um, Yeah, high conflict tends to come from not being able to manage reasonable levels of conflict in reasonable ways, because that’s just what human groups require.
Nyasha Green: You don’t think like most of what you said is kind of subjective though.
Dan Knauss: Oh, sure. , it’s just a, a model, uh, a hypothesis, I guess,
Nyasha Green: but like, I, I think I could fit into [00:33:00] that because I, like I said, when I told tell people, like I address things, people can take that as like, if.
She’ll like yell at you. If you say something to her, I can say, but it’s not that I like to talk to people like positive, or it could be positive or negative. You could come to me and say, oh my God, ni I just had the great day ever. And I’m gonna say what happened? Let’s talk about it. You could come to me and say, I just had the worst day ever.
I’m like, dude, what happened? Let’s talk about it. My responses will not change. Um, but just people who address things because we’re in a community, we’re in a society. , we’re in a place where. People are very nonconfrontational. They are very nonconfrontational in the text space, not even just WordPress.
Right. So I, I could come off as like confrontational or aggressive and I’m not I’m I will, my responses will be the same. I just, yeah. I like, I’m curious. I told you, I’m a naturally curious person. I ask you like 50 million questions a day and you always answer, and I appreciate you. and I, I, that, but that could be taken the wrong way.
So it’s [00:34:00] like, I’m not a psychiatry person or psych psychological person. I can’t look into all these things to see how we should treat these different people. And that, I just think we should have more opposing or diverse thoughts so we can, you know, get more people who are not just like in a echo chamber together, and then we can grow and make changes from that.
We just, there’s no way we’re gonna get to a point where everybody’s nice to each other because nice is subjective.
Dan Knauss: Right. Well, yeah, and there’s a lot of culture in it too. I, I think what in the way I I’m looking at it, um, the way you describe yourself and, um, I would probably fit in that, in that too, is, is not a high conflict personality, but people might who, because, because you’re a pressure valve because you’re, you’re, you’re not gonna bury stuff or, and it’s not that big of a deal to you.
Yeah. But the per the person who’s trying to avoid. Conflict that every turn is suppressing. What they really think is suppressing, [00:35:00] uh, things that probably matter a lot to them. And you don’t even know. And then boom, it comes out at one point that’s. Oh yeah. That’s a really negative kind of conflict to have.
So if, I don’t know, you keep it kind of at a Luke warm level. A lot of the time, it’s not, you know, that’s pretty good. I’m I’m originally from the, the Northeast and. And there’s , there’s generally more time, especially in the Metro Northern New Jersey, New York, um, region there it’s um, it’s, uh, it’s probably looked on as, as high conflict personality.
It’s aggressive. aggressive. Yeah. Drive. Sure. Learning to drive in, in New Jersey is fun. Um but it’s actually, it gives you a lot of, it’s a lot of tolerance. It’s a lot of space because you can, people can push each other a long way and it’s, and they have a lot of options to, um, , there’s a lot of moves you can make.
And, and a lot of it is. You know, [00:36:00] it’s just, it’s just talk it just Jerry Feld, people like to talk um, but then, you know, moving to the Midwest or the south at different times, totally different thing. And people don’t interpret, um, you know, the threshold that they have for tolerating. Um, Um, open disagreement or questioning is lower.
Oh. So low differently.
Nyasha Green: And , they love me here.
Dan Knauss: yeah. I mean, I kind of missed the Southern ways of, of kind of. Backhanded dealing with
Nyasha Green: things. I don’t miss this. We see we, we are opposing each other again. I, I love that New Jersey, New York, Boston way of, of being of talking to people because it’s, you know me to understand it’s it’s so it’s genuine, like here, like people could be talking to you and hate your gut, so you’d never know oh, bless your heart.
So awesome. Like, [00:37:00] oh God, I hate that. Those are fighting words. So again, like someone might say, bless your heart. Oh, they’re they’re blessing you. I’m like, no, they wanna fight. I’m just kidding.
Dan Knauss: I got used to it. I don’t know it, but it’s, it’s a way of everyone knows is they’re putting it off to the side. I, I never really figured out the, the Midwest.
Um, doesn’t really have anywhere for it to go and that, uh, that’s a problem. I don’t have a lot of west coast experience. I don’t get it at all then. Oh, I love the west.
Nyasha Green: You don’t like the west coast. We disagreeing again. Dan, we’re supposed to be, I don’t
Dan Knauss: know. I’m just saying I’m neutral. I mean, I hardly, I’ve only been there a few times.
I’m kind of probably biased against Southern California car, all that. I probably like the north in the bay area, but we’re gonna, we’ll actually meet each other. In San Diego so we can, yes, we can check it out.
Nyasha Green: that’s gonna be fun now that you say that I love the voice closed. The people are so laid back in my opinion.[00:38:00]
They’re so laid back.
Dan Knauss: that’s the reputation. It just, yeah. Is there, is there something else going on underneath? I don’t know.
Nyasha Green: That is so funny to me.
huh? Insidious Californians.
Dan Knauss: Well, yeah, it’s a big, well, that’s, it’s a huge, we generalize like that. So these it’s like GDP of a top, one of the largest countries, big population, very first, every respect and yeah, WordPress is, it’s like California. It’s like, like any big country. It’s just, I think the diversity is there.
It’s not, yeah, it’s in, it’s
Nyasha Green: in. I’m
Dan Knauss: sorry. There’s there’s not, there’s a lot of underrepresentation of mm-hmm underrepresented groups. We that’s definitely there, but there’s huge diversity in the types of personalities and people and what their [00:39:00] experiences are and how they came into WordPress and how their business works and what ships they’ve got on their shoulder or what words will trigger them off.
And we don’t know that, that stuff until you get up pretty, pretty close and. Yeah, I don’t, I don’t know if there’s much we can do, um, podcasts or articles to, uh, smooth that process of, um, connection. I think that’s more of an in person thing, your, your meetups that you’re starting are probably most important.
The mentoring, you know, gets people together.
Nyasha Green: Yeah. But I mean, if it’s me mentoring and you. I have this stigma against me who people really be happy about that. not saying I do. I’m just saying, um, just adding on what you said about diversity. Um, we need more diverse people too. I know we had diversity diverse minds, but if we were as diverse as Iowa am comfortable with every podcast I would get asked on, wouldn’t be led by [00:40:00] white men.
There’s been one, there’s only been one I’ve been. Or been asked to be beyond that wasn’t led by white man, and it was led by alley my homie alley. So it’s like, yeah, that’s not diverse. That’s that’s not it at all. Um, diverse minds. Yeah. What do those mind, what are those minds attached to so I I’ll, um, I think we need to go a little further with that.
I think, I think we need to go a little further with that, but, um, I lost my thought. I’m sorry. We need to go further. We need to go further.
Dan Knauss: Definitely. And well, yeah, I think you’ve affected change in that area. Winston, I think was early voice there and Allie and love her and you and love her. Um, yeah, I mean all people I, I hope to meet, um, and getting, um, kind of beginning to normalize.
What would you call it? Uh, travel [00:41:00] scholarships. Um, and yeah, you know, you wanna have underrepresented people here. Well, let’s, let’s meet the needs. Let’s actually talk about that. I kind of like it’s, it’s too bad that, um, people are kind of desperate for getting tickets to word, word, camp us. Um, but I kind of like the fact that.
People are talking more openly about, um, about the process, you know, there’s the whole what’s, when are you going? What, what days? And all of this stuff, that’s kind of all out, out in the open rather than just, um, I don’t remember seeing that quite so much. It
Nyasha Green: used to be as like a secret, what was it? Tell me about it.
You know, I don’t know. No, no, no.
Dan Knauss: Maybe I just wasn’t paying attention. It was not a secret, but, um, I think, I think that. That it’s been a couple of things that it it’s been so long since the last one, that this is kind of a [00:42:00] reboot plus everything else that’s going on in the community. And then 600 5650 tickets, um, that went on the market and got snapped up in 45 minutes.
Um, it’s, it’s definitely, there’s definitely more talk about. About the journey there and the importance and the importance of it. Um, and I don’t know, that just seems good. Um, in some ways I, I wish, um, you know, I hope everyone can, well, I wish everyone could make it. Who wants to, I wasn’t, I wasn’t sure if I would, um, initially, but, um, Yeah.
When people are saying, Hey, I need . Is there a way I can get, um, then, then that’s in the, in the community there it’s in like an a, it’s a basic question of, um, can I get there? Can I be in, I wanna [00:43:00] be included in this, is that possible? Um, I just haven’t seen that, that come up before. It’s just a very private thing.
Nyasha Green: well, I think that’s. Well
Dan Knauss: it’s upside. I mean, it’s not awesome that people, people are gonna get shot out. I or it’s to something. No.
Nyasha Green: Yeah, of course not. It’s awesome. That. The want is that high, like, oh yeah. Especially to network and meet everybody in the community. Cuz I mean meeting face to face, I think, eh, it is COVID, I’m kind of hesitant on that and what monkey pop now?
Ugh. Oh yeah. But um, I think meeting will actually help people too. I think the internet gives you a lot. Gives not you. A lot of people louder, negative voices than they. Would usually have, yeah. I think a lot of, um, impersonal contact will, that’ll be one thing that helps. So that that’s an answer to your question earlier.
I think that’s gonna help. We’re gonna have such a good time at work camp and like, everybody’s gonna be like happy and they’re gonna love each other and your face. [00:44:00] I, I just wanna see your face, but I think you be like, Hmm, we’re gonna, what,
Dan Knauss: but it’s gonna be good. You’re reminding me of my. Friend and cop neighbor when I lived in, in Milwaukee and he, uh, what, nothing go ahead, get a certain personality type.
And, and he was actually very sensitive and, uh, well, red guy, but, uh, if I mentioned. Anything that sounded like that. He’d say something about like, uh, yeah. And all the animals and people will hold hands and dance around the trees together or something like that was
Nyasha Green: his. And why can’t we do that? It’s California.
It’s Southern California. We can do that.
Dan Knauss: Well, it’s always, it’s always worth the effort of getting, getting people together and it does happen. It’s a very individual thing and I, I hope there is. More of that. I’ve only gotten it online when, when I take the time to, [00:45:00] you know, take some blows and talk to people, um, listen, don’t react and, and try to understand where they’re coming from.
And that’s just, yeah, it’s, it’s so much easier in person usually because, um, yeah,
Nyasha Green: just empathy. Oh yeah. We need a lot more. You do you want me to end by like singing some Julie Andrews? I have a really great voice. Oh, wow. I’m joking. I’m joking, Dan. No, you look too excited. Never mind you look so excited by me.
Dan Knauss: there’s a, there’s a karaoke request from Miriam Schwab. Um, in our, in post dad, slack. Yeah. People are lining up. And then out burger trips
Nyasha Green: and I do love karaoke. Okay. We’ll we’ll do it in California. We’re
Dan Knauss: you are, you are a singer. Is that
Nyasha Green: true? I am not. I lied. No. Okay. I, I have like a people tell me I have a singing voice.
I don’t know what that [00:46:00] means. I guess I kind of, I, I like, sometimes my sentences are like long, like a song, like I’ll extend out a word that I, I don’t know, but I cannot sing. I will sing though, especially at karaoke. So you’ll see. All
Dan Knauss: right. I will definitely be watching. avoiding . I have never, never really?
Um, no, I don’t think
Nyasha Green: I’ve ever done it. No duet. We can’t do it. Duet. Wouldn’t do it. Oh, really? damn. Come on. Depends what
Dan Knauss: it is. I’m sure you’ll pick something. All
Nyasha Green: right. Something
Dan Knauss: fabulous. All right. Well, good talking to. You
Nyasha Green: too see you
Dan Knauss: next week. Do you think we’re the same? What’s changed. Who’s we WordPress Royal.
We, if you’d like to carry on this conversation or start another one, get in touch with us post status, you can email me Dan, post [00:47:00] status.com. And if you’re a post status member, you know where to find me. If you’re not, it’s not a cult. Come check us. We’ve got the most amazing slack channels where members give and grow together.
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