New ‘Free Plan’ site, no option to switch editor?
I’ve been a WordPress user for years and had a premium account for some time now. I moved jobs recently and advised a co-worker to try out WordPress because of its easy to use editing functionalities. They were previously on Blogger, which seems to have developed numerous issues since their change over to ‘block’ editing.
Unfortunately after opening the new account to show them the joys of editing in WordPress, I find that there is no longer an option to change to the ‘Classic Editor’, not only that, you can’t even install the plugin unless you upgrade to a business account?
Is this now standard with any new, free plan, site? They were thinking of using this with a group of students, each of which would have their own WordPress site; but without the Classic Editor, which in my opinion was the perfect editor, quick and effective, they won’t be able to cope with the complexities and often buggy functionality of the Block Editor.
Is there some kind of a free workaround? Thanks for any help you can provide, if we can’t use the Classic Editor anymore then we’ll have to look elsewhere I’m afraid as they don’t have time to get to grips with the new Block Editor.
Duncan …….. :)
The newest themes (usually the ones automatically installed when creating a new site) are designed only to work with the Block editor. If you change to an older free theme you should be able to build the site using the classic editor.
Thanks for the speedy response. Unfortunately I’ve activated the ‘Twenty Seventeen’ theme and still there is no option to switch to the Classic Editor. Just to clarify, I’m not just talking about using the classic editor block, I’m talking about using the full site wide Classic Editor for posts, pages etc …
When you’re working on a post there should be three dots/more tools and options top right. At the bottom of that menu should be “switch to classic editor”.
Yes, that’s what I was looking for, but this doesn’t appear, the last in that drop down list is simply, ‘Options’. I was wondering if it was a new policy that WordPress have now taken away that option from ‘free plan’ sites and only allowed the switch over via premium and business sites?
The only other information I can really provide is that the site is private at the moment and hasn’t been published yet; although I wouldn’t have thought that would have any affect on what editor I use.
Hi Duncan –
I’ve changed the preferred editor on hamsteadhallmediacourse.wordpress.com to be the classic option. Please write back if more help is needed.
Thank you so much, that’s awesome!!
Just a quick question then, was it something I’d done, as I don’t remember setting the editor to the new Block Editor, although there didn’t seem to be a choice at the time?
Will this also be an issue with the students if they create a free account as well?
Thanks again for the speedy fix.
Duncan ……… :)
On new WordPress.com accounts created since December last year there’s no longer an option to switch to the classic editor. We can still do it from our internal tools, but you won’t be able to do it yourself.
This change comes from the assumption that someone new to WordPress.com won’t be aware of the classic editor, and offering multiple editor options can be a potential source of confusion for someone using WordPress.com for the first time. We’re happy to still switch it for you if needed, though.
You also won’t see the option to switch to classic on sites in older accounts that have one of our newer block-editor-based themes active, as those themes were designed specifically for use with the block editor and won’t work properly with the classic editor.
I realise the block editor takes a while to get used to – it did for me – but it’s also here to stay, and support for the classic editor likely won’t continue indefinitely. So I want to encourage you to give it a try.
And especially if you’re teaching students to use WordPress it would be better to teach them the block editor, as that’s now the primary interface on both WordPress.com and the open source version on WordPress.org, and the editor most themes and plugins are being developed for now.
That’s great, I really apprciate the clarification. I’d read many forums mentioning the option to switch and just wasn’t finding it. I understand, as a teacher and IT Tech, that the new editor is here to stay. I get why WordPress would want to move forward with it and you’re right, any new joiners to the WordPress fold wouldn’t know any different.
My personal slant on it though, after being a web designer and user of WordPress for many years, is that such an interface needs to be simple and intuitive. I have spent many an hour fumbling around with the blocks layout and just becoming frustrated when I can’t do something very simple that would have taken me a couple of minutes in the classic editor. This surely is not adding functionality and streamlining a productivity tool, if anything it’s a step backwards, which is why it’s gotten so much bad press. The idea was sound, but the implementation doesn’t live up to the hype.
I agree teaching students the latest tools is certainly the best way to go, but progress has to have a meaning behind it. Computer games are mind blowing these days, with realistic graphics and million dollar budgets, but they often lack actual game play and rely heavily on eye candy. Then you look at Tetris, still going strong, still highly addictive as a game, yet the simplest of graphics. Sometimes you don’t need to fix what isn’t broke.
Excuse my rant, I’m somewhat on the fence with it all, and I can see both sides of the argument. I’ll see how the students get on, I just didn’t want them to go from Blogger, in to another platform that acted just the same. Thank you for all your help and insight. Hopefully one day I’ll become a convert.
Duncan ………. :)
Thanks for the feedback, Duncan.
We’re still working on the Block Editor, trying to make it easy to use and more functional.
If you need any help with it, just let us know, we’ll be more than happy to assist you :)
Many thanks. I don’t mean to disrespect the hard work an effort put in by both developers and designers, as I use to be one myself as a general web designer. I appreciate you can’t please all of the people all of the time, that’s just life.
I think the real uproar came from diehard fans of WordPress who’d been happy with the simple and quick editing process, only to be presented with something that was barely functional at the time of launch and told that this will be your future editor. It’s been a couple of years now and the new editor has certainly progressed in a positive way, but there are still glitches and being given a faulty editor to work with, naturally upsets people, certainly if you’re paying for your service.
As I say though, I’m not here to be negatively critical. WordPress and the community have been a massive support and driving force in my life, for that I will be eternally grateful. The support in the forum since yesterday is a perfect example, I’ve got things fixed and clarified within 24 hours. I really do hope that the new editor works out and things settle down. I’ll endeavour to stick with it in some form and hopefully will be eventually won over.
Duncan ……… :)
Hi – I’m running into a related issue. I was having trouble editing text in one block on my free site, so I (stupidly) switched to Classic Editor to fix it, and now I can’t find anywhere to switch back to Block Editor. This is a final project that I’m trying to submit within the month, and I find the Block Editor a lot more user-friendly than the old Classic Editor. Is there a way to switch back?
Of course, now it’s fixed… Nevermind!
I would love to switch to the classic Editor, seems that’s the only way to justify text (for a regular user like me who does not know coding). Block editor was very useful to create my page layout, and only required some try & error, but it’s intuitive.
Now i need some way to justify text when i write, thanks!
@crovax05, you can justify your text in the Block Editor as well. In the Paragraph Block, click on the little arrow pointing down and choose justify from the list:
Thanks for you answer! That option is not always present (maybe because i’m not using paragraph blocks, i will change those). Is there a tutorial of the block editor for beginners? A video showing how to create my page from scratch? That would help me a lot!!
Here’s a step-by-step guide on the new Block Editor:
And here’s also a list of the instructions for all the blocks types:
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