Revolution WordPress themes – Open Source ????

By | November 17, 2008

Open Source Today, I was thinking to develop two WordPress sites for the upcoming projects of mine.  While searching for the good themes, I recalled that Revolution themes have become open source.  So went to http://www.revolutiontheme.com/ and it redirected me the http://www.revolutiontwo.com/. Site was looking nice.  I browsed through the site, but unable to see any download link.  What I was seeing was $99.95/year Pro Package and $149.95/lifetime Pro Plus Package.  I thought that being open source these themes will become free for download.  Clicked the support link to see if there is a link, in vain.  It was telling me that I should sign up to see the threads.  Surprised!  Should I need to signup to get these themes? Confused!  It is approx 100 dollars, which I can’t afford.

So, opened Google and asked “Big G” to show the way to “revolution wordpress themes download” and landed on http://www.wphacks.com at this post http://wphacks.com/revolution-wordpress-themes-2/ The post was showing Revolution themes with links to download.  When I clicked on the link it has gone to e-junkie and returned to the homepage of RevolutionTwo.com.  It was frustrating.  So I had to go through all the comments of wphacks’ post to see if anyone is having the same problem and stuck at a comment where a guy was having the same problem.  What he was seeing was just the signup links like me.  Kyle Eslick commented that he should see a download link in small text.

Kyle Eslick's comment at WPHacks

Then I returned to the site and now I can clearly see the download link, which is in very small font and was looking like a footer note.  So, it took half an hour for me to find the download link.

Theme download link, which will be ignored as footer link

Theme download link, which will be ignored as footer link

After downloading the theme, I opened the zip file and found no instructions on setting up the theme.  Again I went to support site and was able to get a little details on setting up the themes, one or two threads, which are open to anyone.

So, what I want to say is:

  • Though it says Open Source, I don’t see the things like what I see on many open source sites.  Site is misleading the visitors making them to sing up for the 100 or 140 dollars membership, looks like playing a cheap trick to get signups.
  • Why don’t you people put the download links more prominent rather than making it look like footer links?
  • Why there is no setup guide in the themes?

Read the below comment by DerFrankie at WPHacks, that is what came into my mind after half an hour search.

I think, that the way Revolution is doing this is quite the oposite of open source.

You might think that a normal open source project will focus on developing a product (theme), documentate it, and release it as a base for contribution and a community to build upon it.

To monetize the effort of the releasing firm, some firms offer service and support agreements (btw a new forrester research has shown that most open source projects relying solely on support contracts don’t pay off).

I cannot see this with this themes. The site states that is open source – but it’s main goal is to sell the service.

On the site you have to “search” for the download link. There is no “project” behind it and the customization has to be done, by “hacking” into the theme, making it difficult to upgrade.

And, many more questions, but when somebody is offering things for free, we can’t question them.  Anyway, if you want to download a theme and use it for your blog, below links will be helpful:

  • Download links are at the bottom in small font as you can see in the image above.
  • Theme tutorials are here: http://www.revolutiontwo.com/support/viewforum.php?f=14 though they do not cover all the things.
  • Go to Justin Tadlock’s http://themehybrid.com/ and you can find few free themes similar to Revolution. Read the documentation and experiment with those themes.
  • Play with Darren Hoyt’s Mimbo theme to understand setting the categories and custom fields.
  • Now, go to Dashboard>Theme Editor and edit the theme files to setup the themes correctly.

5 thoughts on “Revolution WordPress themes – Open Source ????

  1. Kyle Eslick

    Hi Naveen,

    The website is of course setup to promote their support packages, which is why it is setup the way it is.

    I can certainly understand why you were frustrated, but the good news is these support packages are what allows the themes to be free! I think we can agree that the themes they are giving away for free (unsupported) far surpass many themes that people are paying $75.00+ for all the time. The support packages also include support for ALL themes for one price, instead of the old setup which only got you one theme and support.

    With all that said, I am glad you were finally able to find the download link and get your theme(s)!

    Reply
  2. Naveen Post author

    Hi Eslick:

    Thanks for taking time to read my post and comment. After going through the site, I realized their intention of selling support packages. What is the need of getting a premium theme free without knowing how to set it up properly? They should have kept the downloading links prominent and added a set up guide to the themes. They should have used the word “free themes” rather than “open source” themes.

    As I already said, when something is free, we can’t question the quality.

    I am thinking to write setup guides for these themes at least one theme a week.

    Once again, thanks!

    Reply
  3. planetasrbija

    Hi Neveen

    I feel exactly like you do. Open source means free to develop, free support … I have some experience working with WordPress and I can do a lot customizations by myself. But Revolution seems to be very complicated for even most simple things (like the look of index page and the featured categories). After using Options theme, all other premium themes who needs intervention in code seems like “bad idea”?! I’m really looking forward to your setup guides!

    Reply
  4. Mark Bartlett

    I too am having the same problem trying to download these themes. It seems that even the extremely well hidden text link has now also gone.

    Like others have mentioned, I don’t remember having this much trouble downloading any other open source files.

    I think if I do manage to find the themes and successfully download them, I will put them up on my blog for download.

    I promise not to hide the link…. lol.

    Mark Bartlett.

    Reply
    1. Naveen Post author

      The links have gone forever. Now, you have to have sign up for at least $60 package to get a single theme. Same quality free magazine themes you can get at ThemeHybrid by my favorite theme developer, Justin Tadlock. They are free and have good support.

      Reply

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