"Terrible with Envato's Reviewer, 12 Soft Reject for WP item. I Need some Advices!"

Hello my fellow !

As title, my WP item get 12 times soft reject, and need some advices from everyone before resubmit.
*Note: Not mention to Code issues, just discuss about Design issues

PSD version of this item approved and it has been designed and edited based on feedbacks of Envato’s Reviewer (call him is Envato’s Reviewer A).

After i submit WP version ( http://paul-themes.com/wp/intria/intria-demo/ )

Envato’s Reviewer B gave 12 soft rejects to my item and he said that design of this item bland and he not like it.
He gave me some feedbacks and i feel that seem all his feedbacks very very personal, based on his feel and he want change our design follow things that he like. While author of PSD item designed and edited based on feedbacks of Envato’s Reviewer A and it approved.

Really quite conflict and i don’t know now what i have to do.
I hope someone here can help me and i think that also have many authors here also will have many issues like me.

Hope can get some advice from everyone. I’m really appreciate !

They have changed the submission rules at Envato but for the last one or two years, you may not submit the item as HTML/WP even though the PSD is approved. They called it 'WordPress category has different/higher standards but I don’t think it’s objective at all but there’s nothing you can do till you update the design as well

I got my 50+ items rejected from envato elements which is normal there, some people have 100 or 300+ items deleted.

Do I cry? Yes - but alone and in silence :slight_smile: hehehe


I feel your pain mate :slight_smile: Our item was rejected as well with the same comment “bland, dull, blah blah” The problem is that reviewer checks your theme on a Unit Test demo, without any plugins, post images etc. Of course it will look bland. Just add some details to it, which you can remove later in a update. Always test your theme on a Unit Test. That’s all I can give you here. Cheers :wink:

well it’s a theme unit test, they have the right to say it’s bland :smiley: as long as they like.
We’ve done it for years and now they don’t like it anymore.

Something feel like: your girl/boy wants to split up after many years together because we are so different right now.

  • So tell me, what’s the difference?
  • Well, we are not the same gender.
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I had 16 or so, and then I deleted the theme.
Mainly because they were asking to make some stupid changes, again and again, even if I explained them why it doesn’t make any sense.


// I have a function
function theme_display_title(){
// do some stuff

// As you can see I am escaping output on return.
return esc_html($title);
// I call the function, that returns me a SANITIZED content.
// So it's absolutely obvious that I can just call the function, anywhere in my theme, without escaping it one more time
// Just likes this:
echo theme_display_title();

// But they ask me to do this:
echo esc_html(theme_display_title());

// Which is equivalent of doing

Does it makes anyn sense ? Well, if this function was providing some external hooks (actions, filters), then absolutely yes. But this function does not. So you can call it directly.
WordPress is infamous for its slow speed, why should we overload the theme with useless sanitizaion calls ?

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Hello mate.

You are indisputably an experienced author, and most likely in terms of code the theme is excellent. So I and my colleagues looked at the appearance, without prejudice.

  1. Broken icons http://nimb.ws/BqJo9R This is a trifle, easy to fix, but unpleasant. That’s enough to get the soft.
  2. They call it the typographic hierarchy http://nimb.ws/V1OpAB Or increase the font of the paragraph, or remove uppercase from the main header. Strange typography http://nimb.ws/bDW8m2 one more http://nimb.ws/Z0YWHU
  3. The property page, my first click, looks broken. http://nimb.ws/JXOSbl
  4. Where is menu? http://nimb.ws/GTVbow
  5. Footer http://nimb.ws/pEhGlN

So, if I were a reviewer, I would say the following: You’re nearly there! Your item isn’t quite ready for ThemeForest.

P.S. No offense dude, this is just my opinion.

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Your function can return just $title without escaping, and when you use the function then you escape it’s output. It’s called “late escaping” and considered a best practice. Yes it’s tedious, but it instills that you never echo anything dynamic without escaping.
If you want to escape in the function then build it to output the (escaped) value not return.

Yeah, and write esc_html() a hundred times in theme files.
And what if your function suddenly changes and you need to change sanitization function ? You will have to replace it everywhere in your theme files where the function is used.

Let’s just agree that it doesn’t make sense sanitizing a pre-sanitized value, when the value is known and can not be modified from “return” statement to where it’s called using “echo”.

Reviewers are simply following the core code, If you noted most of WordPress functions have two versions one start with wp_get other with just wp_ the first one return the value other print it.
Even functions that don’t have wp_get version you will find $echo parameter with it, So the problem with your logic not with the reviewer if you want avoid repeating you may do something like that

function theme_display_title( $echo = false ){
	if( $echo ) {
        echo esc_html($x);
    }else {
        return $x;
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outside of WP community this is usually called a “bicycle”. Anyway, we just have to follow reviewers directions, even if we don’t agree with them.

They do search “echo” and if there’s no escape next to it, they report it to you to fix it. You can just use “print” instead of echo :slight_smile:

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Yeah, I’ve noticed.
To be honest, I’ve had some really funny experiences there, while working for an elite author.
You know they don’t allow adding inline/dynamic styles with


But we needed this, because we had a lot of custom shortcodes with possibility to customize fonts, colors, etc.
And of course, nobody knew about wp_add_inline_style,
So what they did ?

  1. Collected all CSS in a global php variable.
  2. Print it in a hidden DIV
  3. From JS, read content of that DIV and create a “style” tag.

And reviewers did not notice this (and there is a change this author still uses this “hack”). LOL

It’s possible. There’re few other ways to hack

Even if they noticed I a doubt they will mention it because they only care about <style> tag inside theme files, However in term of security this is very poor Technic and might allow attackers to inject phishing js code, If you want do something like that I suggest you to learn about Monkey Patch

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