Live Writer to move plug-ins off WL Gallery (is it doomed?)

Well it looks like Gallery.live.com may be nearing the end of its days.  According to a blog post by Aaron Bregel from the Live Writer team, an email was sent out today (August 10th), informing Writer plug-in authors that they have until September 10th to move their plug-ins:

We value your efforts and want to ensure that your plug-ins will continue to be accessible for the many people interested in them.  In order to do this, we need you to resubmit any existing plug-ins on Windows Live Gallery using this new process by September 10, 2010. You will be able to add more plug-ins after this date, but we need you to move existing plug-ins by then.

We won’t go through the whole procedure here, you can read about it on Aaron’s blog post, but basically authors are being asked to put their plug-ins up on SkyDrive, and notify the Writer team, who will then check the plug-ins and add them to a list they will maintain.

While the implications of what this means for plug-in developers is a whole other subject (which our friend and ace plug-in writer Scott Lovegrove may very well be addressing here soon), the larger implications are for the Gallery itself.

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It doesn’t look good, to put it mildly.  Gallery.live.com is still sporting the old Wave 2 header (boy, doesn’t it look OLD?), and is hosting, besides the Writer plug-ins, a hodge-podge of add-ins for mostly dead Windows Live products like the Windows Live Toolbar and Windows Live Events (and dare we say, Spaces?).  Truthfully, and except for the pain this is going to put our friend Scott through (he’s written quite a few great Writer plug-ins!), we doubt that anyone is going to much notice the Gallery’s demise.  Still, looking back on the promise with which the Gallery launched, and realizing at one time it was pulling in 27 million page views a month (oops, no idea where the image went to in that post, dang), it will be kind of sad to see it go, if indeed that’s what’s happening.