CSS-Tricks in Limbo: Chris Coyier Wants It Back and the Community Reacts

  • News

CSS-Tricks, the beloved hub for web development enthusiasts, was acquired by DigitalOcean in March 2022 for 4 Million dollars in a move that caught many by surprise. Two years into this unexpected partnership, founder Chris Coyier shared his thoughts on its state last week.

A Brief History

Chris Coyier

Chris Coyier started the site in 2007 and soon became the developer community’s favorite resource. Taking into account its popularity, even Jetpack and WordPress.com sponsored articles at one point in time. In 2021 alone, it had an impressive 91,000 newsletter subscribers and a staggering 88 million pageviews!

When acquiring the learning site with its rich repository of 6,500 articles, videos, guides and other content focused on frontend development, DigitalOcean CEO Yancey Spruill said, “CSS-Tricks will broaden and complement our existing library of content, furthering DigitalOcean’s reach with both frontend and full-stack developers, and supports our community strategy, a key differentiator for DigitalOcean in the cloud computing space.”

CSS-Tricks in 2007/2008

But the turn of events points to a different story. Digital Ocean fired Geoff Graham and the entire content team one year later. The last article on the website (The author of the article “Passkeys: What the Heck and Why?” later apologized in his bio “I’m sorry Chris – I never wanted my passkeys post to signify the end of an era 🙁 “) was published on Apr 12, 2023. This left the followers disappointed over the sad state of affairs and wondering about new articles not being published.

Present Scenario

Screenshot of css-tricks.com

Last week, Chris Coyier posted about his thoughts on CSS-Tricks. He slowly realized that he’s “the most perfect person on Earth” to head CSS-Tricks. He took a gamble and mailed them asking them to transfer the ownership back to him: “I’ll just take it back please and thank you.” His arguments are: 

  • Digital Ocean is not spending more money and is just trying to break even.
  • With him back, they can cut down on the internal costs. 
  • The community will love it.

The post brought out mixed emotions in the community. Some were enthusiastic but others felt he deserved a break after all he had done for the community and even more were disappointed with Digital Ocean. The COO of Wix.com, Nir Zohar hinted about an opportunity with them if he can start the website from scratch. Chris said he’s still pretty busy with the upcoming CodePen 2.0 release. 

Paddy Srinivasan, CEO of Digital Ocean commented: “Just talked to Chris Coyier, and we had a very constructive conversation on the current and future state of CSS-Tricks. We are both determined to find a path forward to bring CSS-Tricks back in service of the community. As the CEO of DigitalOcean, I agree that we haven’t lived up to our responsibility as the stewards of the site and it has gone ignored for too long but we are committed to finding a solution which hopefully includes Chris Coyier in some capacity.” 

Hopefully, the coming days will see the resurrection of this beloved website. 

The WP Week Newsletter

A weekly newsletter covering updates from the WordPress ecosystem that are relevant and helpful for WordPress agencies, developers, and enthusiasts

Leave your comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *