How the WordPress Community Supports Ukraine’s Resistance Against Russian Invasion – WP Tavern
As Russia decimates Ukrainian cities in an illegal attempt to occupy the country, WordPress companies and individuals are looking for ways to help refugees fleeing the violence, as well as those left behind to fight.
We are living in one of those rare times in history when events have captured the attention and the hearts of people around the world, with a powerful unifying force. In the face of such utter hostility and injustice, many feel powerless to make a difference, but the WordPress community is finding creative ways to support the brave efforts of the Ukrainian people.
After identifying an attack on Ukrainian university websites that coincided with the invasion of Russia, Wordfence announcement it has enabled its real-time threat intelligence for more than 8,000 of its users on the Ukrainian top-level domain (TLD) .UA until further notice. Normally this is a paid feature. It includes a commercial-grade IP blocklist, real-time firewall rules, and real-time malware detection.
“This is the first time in our company’s history that we’ve taken this action,” said Mark Maunder, CEO of Defiant (creators of Wordfence). “We are doing this in response to the crisis that has unfolded in Ukraine.”
service bolta company that hosts WordPress sites, among other platforms, has offered free hosting to anyone working to help the people of Ukraine.
In an extraordinary individual effort that raised €3,500, primarily from the WordPress community, Ines van Dijk, a mother of three, living in the Netherlands, traveled 2,500 km in Poland to donate items and drive refugees.
“Many, many people have been displaced,” she said. “I can’t sit quietly with this and do nothing, so I decided to hire a van, load it up with things the refugees might need and drive to Poland.”
She collected bags of clothes and blankets, personal items, bought food and water and transported them to refugees in Poland.
A week after Russia began its invasion of Ukraine, more than one million people fled the country in what the United Nations calls the fastest refugee exodus of this century. Meanwhile, many have chosen to stay, and some Ukraine-based businesses are struggling to stay in business while sheltering for their lives.
“Our team is located in three cities (Mykolaiv, Lviv, Kyiv),” Crocoblock Partner Manager Lana Miro said in an update on Post Status Slack. “We are safe, we are working one way or another. Some stay in basements, some stay in apartments (and use the bathroom during air alarms). Our mood is optimistic and we believe/help our army. Thank you all for your support and everything will be fine.
Crocoblock has updated the banner on its site, which links to a donation page for ukrainian army. The banner refers to the last words of Ukrainian soldiers who are believed to have died defending Snake Island in the Black Sea. They may have been illegally captured by Putin’s forces, but this has yet to be confirmed. Their brave last words became a rallying cry, echoing the sentiments of pro-Ukrainian supporters around the world.
Paid Memberships Pro CEO Jason Coleman wrote a tutorial on how internet businesses can find their ukrainian customers and email them to see how they can help you. There are specific instructions in the article for those using the PMPro plugin on how they can find users with a Ukrainian billing address, Ukrainian email addresses, or Ukrainian websites. It also applies more broadly to those using other CRM or e-commerce software solutions.
The team at Codeable, an independent WordPress platform, also works with its developers in Ukraine and Russia to help them ensure that their customers always receive services.
“We are a two-sided market between our developers and our customers”, Codable Community development expert Mike Demo said. “We perform daily wellness checks, expedite payments to our developers in Ukraine and Russia, and support clients with Ukrainian and Russian experts to find alternative development assistance if needed, at no cost to the client or money. lost for the expert.”
Earlier this week, Namecheap took a highly controversial approach to making a difference, termination service for Russian customers with only six days notice. (Namecheap has since revised the deadline to March 22). This includes Namecheap Hosting, EasyWP (Namecheap’s managed WordPress hosting), and Private Email with a domain provided by another registrar in the .ru, .xn--p1ai (рф), .by, .xn--90ais ( бел) and .su.
The email to clients puts the blame on topics of authoritarian rule, a tactic that sparked heated debate on Hacker News:
“Unfortunately, due to the Russian regime’s war crimes and human rights abuses in Ukraine, we will no longer provide services to registered users in Russia. While we understand that this war does not affect your own views or opinions on the matter, the fact is that your authoritarian government is committing human rights abuses and engaging in war crimes, that is therefore a political decision that we have taken and that we will respect.
While the sanctions are having a catastrophic effect on the Russian economy and many Russians are scrambling to get out of the country, some say the measures are hurting those trying to help. A user on Hacker News, @_vtoj, highlighted some reasons why this approach is problematic:
Man, right now we’re all in shock, as:
– some try to find their relatives in Ukraine
– some coordinate and volunteer
– some are trying to get themselves and their families out of Russia (which is becoming more and more difficult due to prices and sanctions)
– some are trying to move at least some of the money out, as all their savings are now blocked
– some try to preserve what they have despite the ruble and the market collapse
– some are taking refuge with what they have and their loved ones, trying to stockpile food before prices skyrocket
And no one has time to deal with and deal with anything – don’t forget the usual workloads either. Planning for a week gives the impression that it is already a strategic scope and not a tactical one.
I understand what you’re trying to do, but can’t you at least give everyone more time? Right now I need to remove everything and migrate my DNS as well because my private email which I use for documents will stop working in 6 days. And to figure out how to pay transfer fees while doing all of this. It’s already very stressful.
GoDaddy, another major domain registrar and hosting provider, has taken a slightly different approach, announcing today that the company renews, free of charge, any products or services that are due to expire within the next 60 days for Ukrainian customers. The company is also donating $500,000 for humanitarian relief in Ukraine and matching employee donations, and providing assistance to Ukrainian contract workers.
“What happened in Ukraine is horrific,” GoDaddy said. “We do not tolerate the unjustified aggression of the Russian government.”
The company also makes specific business decisions that impact Russian customers, but may not affect existing customers as strongly as Namecheap’s sanctions:
- Removal of the Russian version of our website
- No longer supports new registrations of .ru and .ru.com
- Removal of all .ru domain names from our domain name secondary market
- Abolition of the Russian ruble
If you’re looking for ideas on where you can lend your support, Andrey Savchenko, longtime WordPress contributor and co-organizer of the first official WordCamp in Ukraine, recommends donating to Ukrainian Armed Forces and Come Back Alive Fund. He is currently hosted in Kyiv.
These are just a few examples of how the WordPress community and wider hosting communities are using their influence and resources to help with relief efforts. If your company is launching an effort that was missed here, feel free to leave information about it in the comments.