It's Episode 542 and we have plugins for Christmas Clock, Christmas Facts, White Christmas, Verifying Email, Spicy Posting, Wicked Building... and ClassicPress Options. It's all coming up on WordPress Plugins A-Z!

Top WordPress Plugins for Christmas

Top WordPress Plugins for Christmas

It's Episode 542 and we have plugins for Christmas Clock, Christmas Facts, White Christmas, Verifying Email, Spicy Posting, Wicked Building… and ClassicPress Options. It's all coming up on WordPress Plugins A-Z!

Christmas Countdown Clock, Random Christmas Fact Widget, WP Snow Effect, Email Verification, Spice Post Slider, Wicked Block Builder……. and ClassicPress options on Episode 542.

John's Intro:

T'was the week before Christmas and all through the web not a developer was stirring….. Merry Christmas everyone Enjoy the time with your families

This is a value for value show and I look forward to everyone providing some value back.

Before I get started, you will want to hang around to the end of the show for our Q & A segment with Amber…. and to those listening on the podcast, you may want to check out the YouTube version which has some great discussions before the show starts…

Producer Credits:

Executive producer:

Nobody this week. Maybe next week!

Show Art:

Greg's Graphics (Greg Holdsworth) —

All the show notes can be found at:

Check out all the art work at
To Submit Artwork go here

Amber's Rant:

This is #51 of 52 episodes for 2021! This is a pre-recorded show, so no idea what the weather will actually be like when this goes up – but hopefully it's not too crazy with snow and rain!

Though I have to say, I am actually looking forward to snow this year since I don't have a driveway to shovel this year, and my new place has the ability to actually hold the heat! Very exciting!

I hope everyone makes a point to put down work, electronics, media – and spend some quality time with family and friends this holiday.

Rinse and repeat as often as needed.

We have some news from the world of WordPress for you today as well as some great plugins.

News this week:

iThemes WordPress Vulnerability Report Part 4 will not be coming out until later this week, and this is a pre-recorded show, so I have added the link for you to check out Part 4 here for you to peruse at your discretion.

Google Drive could soon start locking your files – If you store anything for your site in Google Drive, you may want to think about getting it out of there soon! Google has announced a new policy for their cloud storage service drive – they will soon begin restricting access to files deemed to be in violation of the company's policies. This could be a very good thing – but with all new restrictions come the innocent bystanders who experience the worst of the backlash. I would recommend backing your files up on an external hard drive.

WordPress 5.9 to Introduce Language Switcher on Login Screen – This could be a very helpful addition! Especially for people who are not used to searching, loading, and setting up plugins themselves – but still need the option.

WordPress gives a nod to the No Nonsense Plugin! – I thought this was pretty cool, seeing the plugin No Nonsense I reviewed last week being covered on here! Admittedly, they write a lot more about the plugin, but they pretty much say the same thing as what I did – it's a pretty useful plugin and worth checking out!

Free Software Foundation Adds a Code of Ethics for Board Members – The Free Software Foundation (FSF) is implementing the Code of Ethics in order to guide members in making a more transparent, accountable, ethical, and responsible governance.

Justin Tadlock with WP Tavern talks about a Block-Based Version of the Kubrick WordPress Theme – For those out there that are searching for just this, this is a fantastic article to check out! The article goes through explaining what Kubrick is, and how it works.

State of the Word 2021 – WordPress passes 43% market share, looks to expand the commons through Openverse. This article is a great look into what is going on in the market world around WordPress right now – very exciting for the right person!

How to stop the tracking while using Google – While not necessarily about WordPress, it's always nice to know you have the option to stop the tracking while working!

The extras for even more extra news, check out our Facebook, or Twitter page!

This is the extra news stuff that someone out there might find interesting. To read more, you can head on over to the show notes or newsletter and check it out! If you find something to add for next show, send me a link at

Some original holiday get-together conversation topics you can use for your dinners this year! – TNW brings you “we wish you a merry destroy all humans” article offering up some awesome topics for table conversation this year! Here we go:

Hope these topics help! Enjoy and keep warm!

Search engines try to rival Google by offering fewer ads, more privacy – This is an interesting article going through a few of the less known search engines like Neeva, and talks about what it will be like taking on Google.

How to install Linux on your Windows PC – This is a useful article, I am totally going to use it myself when I have a computer that I will be able to do this on!

Heads up – new lightweight KeyLogger Trojan is floating around – This shows up in the lovely phishing emails as a ZIP attachment; when you click on it, you will get a “Uknown Format” message, but now you have the trojan that will read every keystroke you make hanging out in the background as a remote access evil monkey doing its masters bidding. Just don't open the files.

Reddit-trained AI warns researchers about… itself… – This is an interesting article I came across; professionals are wondering whether or not to believe the AI, and they seem a bit worried about the AI arms race. Check out the article to find out more!

Google moves to shut down huge botnet – Google is fighting against a blockchain technology that is protecting itself. They are working to dismantle it – read on to find out more!

Interesting article about 404 pages being found – this article talks about websites that still exist, from the orginal Space Jame movie site to (which has nothing to do with taco's). Very cool!

More than 200 local newspaper publishers are suing Google and Facebook for damages – A group of 30 companies that own more than 200 local newspapers have formed a coalition against Google and Facebook in a newly consolidated antitrust lawsuit, alleging the tech giants have manipulated the digital ad market to the detriment of local news. Read on to find out more!

DHS announces ‘Hack DHS' bug bounty program for vetted researchers – Could be great for those looking for something to do who are vetted! Also, very interesting read.

The hall of shame via Automattic:

Matt's Famous Quotes

Support the show

This Show will not work without you, the producers, as it is a Value for Value model, meaning if you're getting any value out of it then give some value back and help the show out.

Start by subscribing to the newsletter for additional information and get out there round them up and rope them all in, belly up to the bar and enjoy. Spread the word about WP Plugins A to Z and catch it live every Thursday at noon PST on our YouTube Channel.

Show Producers

We'd like to acknowledge all the producers who have supported the show in the various ways over the last week.

This weeks show Art Work comes from:

Greg's Graphics (Greg Holdsworth) —

To Submit Artwork go here

Check out all the art work at

This week's Executive Producer/'s are:

Nobody this week. Maybe next week!

A big thank you to all the Producers who came in under $50 and to those who have set up weekly subscriptions they will remain anonymous and I thank you very much.

All these small subscriptions really help the show out.

A big thank you to those who have hired me because of the Podcast, thank you that is as good as donating to the show.

You can Support the Show by:

Donating money to help the show Donations of $50 and over are credited with an Executive Producer Credit in the Show Notes, and their note is read out on the show.

Submitting art work at the WP Plugins Art generator,
To Submit Artwork go here

Submit articles news and information

Submit plugin suggestions for reviews

You can also create a monthly donation at Patreon

Or something I may not have thought of.

If you would like to send something to WP Plugins A to Z you can send to the following address:

WP Plugins A to Z
C/O John Overall
20-754 E Fairview Rd.
Victoria, BC V9A 5T9Canada

Off we go into the meat and potatoes, Into the depths of plugin depravity…..

ClassicPress Options

ClassicPress is growing really well, but I just don't have the time to add reviews on ClassicPress myself. I am always open to reviews sent in by listeners; though unless there is a review sent into me on ClassicPress, I am not going to do more than mention that ClassicPress is a thing, and here are some resources. I hope some listeners out there find this information useful!

One thing I am looking forward to in the ClassicPress World is the expansion of the number of ClassicPress specific plugins and their own repository. There are a few plugins specifically for ClassicPress and all plugins for WordPress 4.9.9 work well on it. I do believe it has a future, I just have not time to help them in getting it out there.

ClassicPress News:

It has been released!!!

ClassicPress 1.4.0-rc2 Release Notes

We’re happy to announce the first public release candidate for ClassicPress 1.4.0.

Note this release is called rc2 because in the process of preparing the original 1.4.0-rc1 release we quickly discovered and fixed an issue. This release was never made publicly available. There will be an rc3 release within a few days to fix a found issue, but please keep testing so that we can find more issues, if there are any others.

Find out more about ClassicPress 1.4.0 rc2

For some up to date news on ClassicPress check out the ClassicPress Blog.

ClassicPress Resources:

“Must Have” Plugins List

It seems ClassicPress now has it own repository you can check it here they now have 83 plugins available.

CodePotent's plugin directory

WordPress Plugins

Are you looking for some great newly released plugins? check this link


John's Plugin

Christmas Countdown Clock

Requires:1.5 or higher
Compatible up to:5.6.14
Released:04 September 2010
Last Updated:18 February 2021
(3 star out of 5)

The Lowdown:

Just a simple countdown timer to that special day that all the kids look forward to.

Rating 5 Dragons


Amber's Plugin

Email Verification

Requires:5.0 or higher
Compatible up to:6.3.5
Released:02 December 2021
Last Updated:23 September 2023
(3.5 star out of 5)

The Lowdown:

This is a newer plugin, and is designed to help keep all of those fake emails away when you are trying to get the real people out there to sign up to your subscriptions.
This IS a third party service, and you will need to sign up with them to get this going. The free version is only worth 250 ‘credits', which means that after verifying 250 emails for you, you will need to buy a package. There are ‘credit' packages, where you pay a fee for each email verified, or there are monitor packages, where they charge a monthly fee with a 50k email limit.
The settings on this are pretty decent for the plugin, it's easy to use, and seems to work pretty well!
This is compatible with:

  • WordPress’s default registration and comment forms
  • WooCommerce’s registration and checkout form
  • Gravity Forms
  • Contact Form 7
  • Ninja Forms
  • Jetpack Forms

Rating 4 Dragons


John's Plugin

Random Christmas Fact Widget

Requires:3.0 or higher
Compatible up to:6.3.5
Released:27 February 2015
Last Updated:22 September 2023
(5 star out of 5)

The lowdown:

This is a cute little Christmas widget; it displays any of 40 random facts pre-loaded into it about Christmas. If your a code digger you can get into it and add your own.

Rating 5 Dragons


Amber's Plugin

Spice Post Slider

Requires:5.3 or higher
Compatible up to:6.5.5
Released:27 November 2021
Last Updated:29 May 2024
(5 star out of 5)

The Lowdown:

For those looking for a beautiful slider to display their posts/blogs with – this is a decent little plugin! You need to fiddle around with the settings a little once you're in there as their sizing is a bit odd at first, but other than that it's a decent one.

This is designed to work with different devices, like the iPad or a mobile – so if you are always on the move and having to work on things, this may be a great option for you!

I don't find this overly exciting or ‘need to have' kind of plugin, but it is a great last moment plugin to grab and work with if you just don't have the time to search, which makes it a useful one to have in your arsenol!

Rating 4 Dragons


John's Plugin

WP Snow Effect

Requires:3.6 or higher
Compatible up to:5.5.15
Released:14 December 2011
Last Updated:10 December 2020
(4.9 star out of 5)

The Lowdown

This is a way to give your site that white Christmas look with a snow effect. The free version may be all you need, but for more control you will need to go and get the pro version.

Rating 4 dragons


Amber's Plugin

Wicked Block Builder

Requires:5.8 or higher
Compatible up to:6.3.5
Released:13 November 2021
Last Updated:21 March 2024
(5 star out of 5)

The Lowdown:

This plugin is a pretty useful one as there is a lot of talk about the blocks out there right now! This is a plugin for designing and creating your own blocks and than using them!

In the free version you have access to the most basic options, which is great to get started! You will need to upgrade to the premium version to have the ability to truly express yourself artistically though.

Very useful plugin, I have a feeling that this newer plugin is going to grow with the times, and I look forward to watching it grow up!

Rating 4 Dragons


Random links for plugins

WordPress plugins crafted from love and experience

Listener Feedback / Audio Clips

Feel free to send in your thoughts to us – The Good, The Bad, The Ugly – we'll take them all!

Listener Questions

Nothing this week, maybe next week!

Enter The Contest to Win!!

Contests Powered by Simple Giveaways who kindly provides us with the premium version for our contests.

Steve Goodtime & Brant Matthews created a new jingle for us for contests.

I do want to thank Charlie for coming to the aid of the show and getting our contests all organized. I also want to thank all the developers again for supporting our show with their plugin donations! Please check them out.

Short note about participating in the contests folks. Remember we go to great efforts to get these licenses and look for more participation from you the producers.

Our contest is for:

We have a new Contest sponsored by Web hosting services.

We're giving away a ONE YEAR Hosting Package…. Valued at $350.00

When it comes to running your website, who you are hosting with is one of the top considerations you need to make. You want a reputable hosting company that is reliable, has great service and offers a package that meets your needs. Hosting with is for the discerning user and most of our clients have been with us for more than 15 years. The reason is because the number of clients allowed per server are limited to obtain maximum performance for everyone.

There are only 12 days left to enter!!!!

Enter Contest Here

The plugins we covered were:

John’s Plugins: Christmas Countdown Clock – 5, Random Christmas Fact Widget – 5, WP Snow Effect – 4

Amber's Plugins: Email Verification – 4, Spice Post Slider – 3, Wicked Block Builder – 4

Matt's Famous Quotes

Reminders / Commercial / Promotions:

Next Week:

No meetup planned at the moment but you can keep tabs on this at

Would you like to be on an interview show? Simply connect at

If you have suggestions on plugins you would like to have reviewed please submit them on the website at

Q & A Time with Amber ——– Catch this info on our YouTube Channel

If you have questions you would like to have asked on the show, send them in to me at and we will answer to the best of our ability!

  • What makes ignored sites so bad?
  • What are the top 3 most important questions topics you ask a prospective client about before starting on their website?
  • What are the 3 main red flags you watch out for in a prospective client?

Closing out this Episode

Just some reminders:

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