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Gaining Benefits from Plugins

There is an interesting comment stream going on over at OMNINOGGIN at the moment. Thaya has released another version of his excellent plugin WP Greet Box. As well as some new functionality the update adds a box to the dashboard which contains the titles, and links to, the last three WordPress development posts he has posted on his blog. In essence it is just a feedreader pointed at his feed.

He has done this to try and inspire a little extra traffic to his blog, but a few people have taken against this because they were surprised by it. It isn’t an opt-in, but you can easily turn it off in the same way as anything else on the Dashboard.

I can see why plugin authors want to do this kind of thing. It is getting harder and harder to stand out in the WordPress community and so it is harder to gain as much benefit. I am not sure how much benefit this will bring, but as he isn’t doing anything but telling us, in a passive way, what is happening on his blog, I don’t really mind it.

What do you think? Is it reasonable for plugin authors to try and show us more about their site (these plugins are free after all) or should the plugin just do its thing and leave us alone?