Is CSS Tricks back?

A question mark sits above a background with a gradient that goes from the top left corner to the bottom right corner. The gradient goes from dark to light colors, and features the orangeish hues of the CSS Tricks branding in the lighter half.

There are signs that CSS Tricks is being revived after being dormant for over a year. Last year, I spoke of the decline of CSS Tricks following the acquistion by Digital Ocean. The post-acquistion stewardship by Digital Ocean was absymal.

Digital Ocean had other priorities. They have seen a raft of personnel changes in recent years, with layoffs and leadership changes. I believe that here has been three CEOs in the past 5 years. The company has vacillated in its direction in that time.

Chris Coyier aired his views on it in a blog post on Feb 28th. He said he tried to get it back at one stage. He had received an email from a guy who became the VP of Content & Community at Digital Ocean who came over from another acquisition. He wanted a “return on investment” and asked for advice from Chris. Chris pitched the idea of transferring ownership back to him.

At the same time, the current CEO of Digital Ocean, Paddy Srinivasan, said the following in a series of tweets on March 1st:

@chriscoyier, original founder of CSS-Tricks, and I connected today 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. Thread 1/2

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. Stay tuned… Thread 2/2

A job posting on the Digital Ocean website for a CSS-Tricks Site Editor. followed.

Former editor of CSS Tricks, Geoff Graham, expressed his conflicting feelings on the job posting in a personal blog post on March 22nd. He was laid off from the position the previous year, but was open to reprising the position if offered. He said the following:

If I’m being completely honest — and boy am I trying to be — it’s hard for me to imagine a scenario where I’m back at CSS-Tricks in any official capacity, though many of you have reached out saying that’s what you’d like to see. Not because it’s impossible but, well, I’m too close to the whole thing and I’m far-sighted.

I’d still jump at the opportunity to help, though. I said it earlier and will do so again: CSS-Tricks can’t come back fast enough. I’m just as (and maybe even more) eager as anyone to have it back. I’m absolutely willing and able to do anything that helps make that happen. CSS-Tricks doesn’t have to be like it was. There’s a chance to do something very special with it that Chris and I could never take on ourselves, and especially not by me alone the way it was before. This is the time to chart that course!

Then in late May, there was a trickle of new content on CSS Tricks, all of it authored by Geoff Graham! I assume Geoff has got his old job back! I wish him the best if that is the case. Though, there has been no formal announcement!

I guess we will have to wait and see if CSS Tricks starts publishing content at a regular clip again. What will the reception be? Can positive vibes and reader loyalty be restored?

I am not sure what to think. Generally I find the trifecta of commerce, community, and content in the tech world to be discombobulating. I’m not sure the center can hold where all three are concerned. My biggest wish is that authors (creators) are valued and compensated appropriately. Without them none of the above exists for very long.

Time to ask Chat GPT what it thinks…😜