The other day while fooling around with WordPress, I started realizing that while it was getting better and better in some areas, other areas still need to be radically reinvented, such as the concept of a Featured Image for posts.
How I came to this conclusion, was that I was remembering people in the past indicating how when Gutenberg and Blocks become mainstream, there would no longer be a need for Post Formats at all. However, when I started browsing some masonry grid themes over on Tumblr and pondered how I could replicate them on WordPress, even if I just used a non-Masonry layout, I realized I couldn’t.
Why? Because WordPress only allows for Featured Images, which are the only visual object to be displayed in the blog list view. Post Formats previously allowed you to have different visual objects in in the blog list view but they’ve been pretty much phased out now in WordPress 6. So the only way to emulate these Post Formats in WordPress currently is if they added functionality that made it possible to “feature” any block, not just an “image”.
In doing some searching, I found one person suggesting just such a thing on the WordPress forums but they got little to no feedback. Digging deeper, I then found a GitHub WordPress Gutenberg thread entitled Rethink “Featured Image” In The Context of Blocks which touched upon it more so but without really any visual action, other than to possibly see about switching the Feature Image option to an Image/Cover Block.
Hopefully if the do decide to do that, it’ll become self-evident in developing it to make many different other blocks have the option of being “featured” in the blog list view as well. Let’s hope! Maybe by next year, we could see at least a few blocks beside an image block have this capability.