Welcoming Big Bite Creative and Trew Knowledge to the WordPress.com VIP Featured Partner Program

We’re pleased to announce two new additions to our list of Featured Service Partners, the ‘premier league’ of specialist WordPress development agencies.

WordPress.com VIP exists to help high-traffic and high-profile publishers get the most out of WordPress. To do so, we work with the best agency partners to deliver best-in-class solutions. Our list has been kept deliberately small and selective: but we’ve been looking to expand it just a little, not least to improve our geographic coverage. And today we’re excited to introduce our new UK-based partner, Big Bite Creative, and our new Toronto-based partner, Trew Knowledge.

Big Bite Creative come from Middlesbrough in the north-east of England, away from the more familiar digital centres of London and Manchester. They are comfortable working with clients in the UK, elsewhere in Europe, or in North America, which currently accounts for about half their business.

They first came to our attention with open sourced projects like Herbert and Ship, demonstrating an awareness of what’s happening on other platforms, and how similar methods might benefit WordPress developers. We also loved their efforts to build a creative community in what they admit is an ‘often overlooked’ part of the UK.

Trew Knowledge is our first Canadian partner, based in Toronto. Although Trew Knowledge is new to the partner program, they are not new to VIP. We’ve worked with them for several years already, as the developers behind the Canadian Olympic Committee website, hosted on WordPress.com VIP.

Trew Knowledge has always focused on building solutions that emphasize speed and performance without compromising security — aspects that align perfectly with our vision for the platform. They’re excited to combine their experience in large-scale digital enterprise solutions with VIP’s robust cloud based infrastructure for clients.

Both teams bring something new to our Featured Partner Program, and we’re delighted to welcome them aboard. The VIP team will be happy to advise on the contribution they, or any of our Partners can make to your next WordPress project.

The Independent Switches to WordPress

Great to see that all the blogs on blogs.independent.co.uk are now powered by WordPress:

In a blog post from Online Editor Martin King, the reasons for the switch from Livejournal included the following:

* to continue pushing forward a site that is ever more social-media-friendly, incorporating our recently improved and well-received comments functionality;

* to enable our posters to add quicker views and analysis more easily.

The last point will be especially beneficial to The Independent’s overseas correspondents, with their busy and occasionally perilous lives. As long as they can send an email, that can be posted immediately, including any image.

Mark wraps up his post with a very insightful point, saying “We are demonstrating that globally standard programs can free mainstream journalism from the complex bespoke set-ups of the past.”

[ Visit http://blogs.independent.co.uk/ ]

Royal Navy Selects WordPress

The UK Royal Navy recently soft launched their blog using WordPress.

The new blog, called Jack Speak (a term for UK Navy slang), provides Royal Navy personnel with the opportunity to share their experiences with a wide audience.

Jack Speak - UK Royal Navy Blog

In the run up to the Olympics, various Navy personnel used the blog to document their training.

Jack Speak emphasizes the multi-author possibilities of WordPress, and is the first blog of the UK Armed Forces.

Jack Speak is designed and managed by London agency TwentySix, with development (and general WordPress advice) by Simon Wheatley.

[Visit Jack Speak]

Number10.gov.uk Selects WordPress

Very exciting news that Number10.gov.uk, the official site of the UK Prime Minister’s Office, has relaunched their site using WordPress.

Designed by New Media Maze ( profiled earlier on their work for Arena Magazine ) with collaboration from Simon Dickson, the site features a host of ways of communicating with the government office as well as sporting a seamless integration of other services like Flickr, YouTube,  and Twitter:

For a few notes on the project be sure to read Simon’s blog post.

[ Visit Number10.gov.uk ]

Arena Magazine Selects WordPress

I’ve received a few emails asking if we could showcase a magazine publisher using WordPress in an innovative way.

Arena Magazine, published by Emap,  is one such publisher.  Promoted as “Britain’s original style magazine – for men”  (content is PG-13), their development agency – New Media Mazehighlights why they selected WordPress:

We designed and built the blog using backend technology WordPress, having considered several options including Typepad  (the technology behind this blog.  [New Media Maze has since switched to WordPress]) and Blogger, but quickly found that WordPress far outstrips the others in terms of features and maniability (is that a real word?! Computer says no…). WordPress is open source and there’s a big community around the technology so when you get stuck, help is always close at hand

You can read the full case study here (case study is rated G).