Howdy. My name is Matthew Mullenweg. I was born and raised in Houston, Texas. I write code, prose, and music. I love taking photos.
I am a founding developer of WordPress, the Open Source software used by over 43% of the web, including this site. The website says WordPress is “a state-of-the-art semantic personal publishing platform” but more importantly WordPress is a part of who I am. Like eating, breathing, music, I can’t not work on WordPress. We celebrated 20 years of WordPress in 2023. (I was 19 when I started. I’m 39 now.) The project touches a lot of people, something I’ve recently begun to appreciate. I consider myself very lucky to be able to work on something I love so much.
Every year I give a “State of the Word” speech. Here’s the 2022 edition.
I used to do consulting and go to school in Houston, then I moved to San Francisco where I worked at CNET Networks. I left in late 2005 to found a company called Automattic, which is now the force behind WordPress.com, Jetpack, WooCommerce, Simplenote, Longreads, The Atavist, and many other products. Our mission is to make the web a better place.
Much like WordPress sought to change the way we publish on the web, Automattic has set out to change the way we work. We are an entirely distributed company — with more than 1,900 employees working from more than 90 countries, and no physical headquarters. We are a company that works on, and for, the web. I run a podcast and website about this at Distributed.blog.
These are the charities or organizations that I support in a way that is significant to me and on a regular basis. Some are working on basic survival issues, and some are addressing problems that we’re lucky to have in this modern technological age, but all are important to me: Archive.org, Alaska Wilderness League, Apache Foundation, Black & Brown Founders, charity: water, Code2040, Docfest, EcoAmerica (board), Electronic Frontier Foundation, Grist, Illuminate the Arts (board), Innocence Project, Johns Hopkins, MAPS, New Museum (board), Long Now Foundation, Project Include, Rothko Chapel.
Press, Podcasts, and Speaking
A few notable links:
- New York Times Corner Office: An Evangelist for Remote Work Sees the Rest of the World Catch On (July 2020)
- Sam Harris: The New Future of Work (March 2020)
- Om Malik interviews for True Foundation series (January 2020)
- Rework podcast: Open Source and Power (October 2019)
- Techcrunch: How Automattic wants to build the operating system of the web (September 2019)
- The Verge: Automattic CEO on what’s next for Tumblr (August 2019)
- Podcast: Interview with Kara Swisher / Recode Decode (August 2018)
- With Tim Ferriss: On Polyphasic Sleep, Tequila, and Building Billion-Dollar Companies (2015), Characteristics and Practices of Successful Entrepreneurs (2016), Random Show with Tim Ferriss and Kevin Rose (2016), Books I’ve Loved (2020).
For more, here’s an archived collection of articles about my work over the years, as well as podcast interviews and past speaking engagements. I’ve also spoken at hundreds of WordPress events and WordCamps.
Growing up in Houston’s public school system I had the good fortune of being exposed to a number of incredible teachers who really cared and had a big impact on my development. I’d love to thank them by name: Anthony Maxie, Craig Green, John Schutza, Conrad Johnson, Bubbha Thomas, Ron Thornton, David Caceres, Kelly Dean, Al Campbell, Bash Whittaker, Doc Morgan, Rickey Campbell, Scott Roman, Woody Witt, Warren Sneed, Dennis Dotson, Noe Marmolejo, and Ross Lence.