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How to write a terrible WordPress tutorial: “Do X without a plugin. Just paste Y into your functions.php!”
— Evan Solomon (@evansolomon) April 11, 2012
True, and here’s a related post I wrote earlier about Plugins vs. Without a Plugin. Still, we keep seeing such tutorials piling up everyday, even obvious ones like Google Analytics.
Why would one want to go through the trouble of copying and pasting code into their theme’s header.php file, and then breaking everything when they change their theme or when the theme gets an update? Why not just use a plugin that will retrieve the analytics profile via OAuth?
Is it considered “cool” to copy/paste all my plugins into my theme’s functions.php file? If so, I might just try it out right here on my site! And since I’m running multisite with quite a few different sites, I’ll have to do that ten times for each plugin that I need to use. Then maybe use constants to indicate which snippets I want active and which ones I don’t. *
And as soon as I end up with a 5000-line functions.php file, I can go complain that WordPress is too difficult to learn, and that it’s a pain switching themes or domains, and maybe blame Otto for absolute URLs too. *