P2: Distributed communcation

Automattic has been fully distributed since its start in 2005. There are many elements that played a role in being able to do this, but one of the most important ones is P2, a WordPress.com-powered communication tool.

Pretty much every team or project has its own P2; a website where rather than CCing everyone on a long-winded email thread that you lost interest in 128 replies ago, employees can follow whole P2s or specific discussions within that P2.

What do I love about it (especially compared to emails)

  • It’s easier to view the threads and subdiscussions than on emails.
  • I don’t get updates on topics I’m not interested in (or that aren’t relevant for my work).
  • Everyone can weigh in — Automattic defaults towards company-wide communication for pretty much everything, that means that a Happiness Engineer can weigh in on a design discussion and a marketer can give a suggestion to Happiness.
  • As a result of the above, it’s easier to fill in new employees as they can read old posts.
  • You can cross-reference easily. No longer “Remember that email where I said this”, but “here’s the actual link to our previous discussion”.

What are you looking for?

When you are communicating to the rest of your team/company, what are the features and tools you’re looking for?

If you’re interested in P2, you can explore the demo here.


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