WordPress Ditches “Pee” and “Tinkle” Jokes in Favor of More Inclusive Language and Clearer Code

WordPress Ditches “Pee” and “Tinkle” Jokes in Favor of More Inclusive Language and Clearer Code

Posted by WP Tavern on March 2, 2022 at 5:27 pm
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It feels like the end of an era. Last week, core contributors merged a patch that removed PHP variables named $pee and $tinkle from the WordPress codebase. Yes, the software that powers 43% of the web has pee-pee jokes in its code. I know how it sounds. I felt silly writing that sentence. My job as a writer for WP Tavern affords me the luxury of taking creative license with words every now and again. However, it is a rare treat to write about pee-pee jokes. The chance to do so will not likely come around again. While I could pull out a few doozies from childhood, I promise to remain as professional as possible, given the subject matter. The vast majority of users are likely unaware of this joke unless they enjoy trawling through the 6,000+ lines of code in /wp-includes/formatting.php. There is a good chance that any developer who has looked up the wpautop() function has stumbled upon it. Reading through the code can garner a chuckle from a few, but it is a momentary amusement. The problem has always been confusing variable names. In programming, clarity should be favored above all else. What is a $pee, exactly?…

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