Is WordPress Open Source: Debunking the Myths

Is WordPress Open Source: Debunking the Myths


In the world of website design and development, WordPress has emerged as a popular platform for small businesses. Its user-friendly interface, vast plugin library, and customizable themes have made it a go-to choice for entrepreneurs looking to establish an online presence. However, there are some misconceptions surrounding WordPress, particularly when it comes to whether it is open source or not. In this blog post, we will delve into the topic and debunk the myths surrounding WordPress’s open source nature.

What is Open Source Software?

Before we dive into the topic, let’s first understand what open source software means. Open source refers to a type of software that allows users to access and modify its source code freely. This means that developers can contribute to the software by adding new features, fixing bugs, and improving its overall performance. Open source software encourages collaboration and innovation within the developer community, leading to continuous improvement and updates.

Debunking the Myths

Myth 1: WordPress is a Proprietary Software

One common misconception about WordPress is that it is a proprietary software, meaning it is owned and controlled by a single entity. However, this is far from the truth. WordPress is, in fact, an open source software. It was initially released in 2003 by Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little, and since then, it has been maintained and improved by a dedicated community of developers from around the world.

To further emphasize its open source nature, WordPress is licensed under the GNU General Public License (GPL). This license grants users the freedom to use, modify, and distribute the software without any restrictions. It also ensures that any derivative works based on WordPress must be released under the same open source license, fostering a culture of collaboration and sharing.

Myth 2: Open Source Means Low Quality

Another myth surrounding open source software, including WordPress, is that it is of lower quality compared to proprietary alternatives. This misconception stems from the notion that open source software lacks professional development and rigorous testing. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth.

WordPress has a dedicated team of developers who work tirelessly to ensure its security, stability, and performance. The open source nature of WordPress allows for continuous peer review, where developers from around the world contribute their expertise to identify and fix any vulnerabilities or bugs. This collaborative effort leads to a robust and reliable platform that can compete with any proprietary software in terms of quality.

Advantages of WordPress Being Open Source

Now that we have debunked the myths surrounding WordPress’s open source nature, let’s explore the advantages it brings to small businesses.

  1. Flexibility and Customizability

One of the biggest advantages of WordPress being open source is the flexibility and customizability it offers. With access to the source code, developers can create and modify themes, plugins, and functionality to suit specific business needs. Whether it’s a simple blog or a complex e-commerce website, WordPress can be tailored to meet the unique requirements of any small business.

  1. Cost-Effectiveness

Another benefit of open source software is its cost-effectiveness. WordPress itself is free to use, and many of its themes and plugins are also available for free or at very affordable prices. This makes it an ideal choice for small businesses with limited budgets, as it eliminates the need for expensive licenses or subscriptions.

Additionally, the open source nature of WordPress means that businesses are not locked into a proprietary system. They have the freedom to switch hosting providers or make modifications without any restrictions, further reducing costs in the long run.

  1. Large Community Support

WordPress has a vast and active community of users and developers who are ready to provide support and assistance. Whether it’s troubleshooting an issue, seeking advice on best practices, or finding a solution to a specific problem, the WordPress community is always there to help. This collaborative environment fosters knowledge sharing and ensures that businesses have access to a wealth of resources and expertise.


In conclusion, WordPress is indeed an open source software, debunking the myths surrounding its nature. Its open source license, dedicated community of developers, and the advantages it brings to small businesses make it a powerful platform for creating and managing websites. The flexibility, customizability, cost-effectiveness, and community support offered by WordPress make it an excellent choice for entrepreneurs looking to establish their online presence.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1. Can I sell websites built with WordPress?

Yes, you can sell websites built with WordPress. As an open source platform, WordPress allows you to create and customize websites for your clients. You can charge clients for the design, development, and maintenance services you provide. However, it’s essential to adhere to the WordPress licensing terms and ensure that any premium themes or plugins used are properly licensed.

Q2. Is WordPress better than other proprietary website builders?

WordPress’s open source nature gives it a unique advantage over proprietary website builders. It offers unparalleled flexibility, customizability, and a vast library of themes and plugins. While other proprietary website builders may have their own strengths, WordPress’s open source community and ecosystem make it a popular choice among small businesses.

Q3. Can I contribute to the development of WordPress?

Absolutely! WordPress encourages community participation and welcomes contributions from developers of all skill levels. Whether it’s reporting bugs, suggesting enhancements, or even submitting code patches, you can actively contribute to the development of WordPress. The WordPress community provides various resources, such as documentation and forums, to help you get started with contributing.

Q4. Are there any limitations to using open source software like WordPress?

While open source software like WordPress offers numerous advantages, it’s essential to be aware of potential limitations. One such limitation is the need for regular updates and maintenance to ensure the security and stability of your website. As open source software attracts a large user base, it may also be targeted by malicious actors. However, by following best practices and staying updated with security patches, you can mitigate these risks effectively.

Q5. Can I migrate my website from a proprietary platform to WordPress?

Yes, it is possible to migrate your website from a proprietary platform to WordPress. However, the complexity of the migration process depends on various factors, such as the size and complexity of your existing website. It is recommended to seek assistance from experienced developers or utilize migration plugins and services to ensure a smooth transition.

In conclusion, WordPress’s open source nature makes it an excellent choice for small businesses looking to establish an online presence. Its versatility, cost-effectiveness, and community support set it apart from proprietary alternatives. By leveraging the power of WordPress, entrepreneurs can create tailored websites that meet their unique business needs while enjoying the benefits of an open source platform. So, embrace WordPress and unlock the endless possibilities it offers!