Need to change APACHE_RUN_USER when CHOWNing www-data to another user?

I am running wordpress with a LAMP on 14.04 droplet. I followed the tutorial to Configure Secure Updates and Installations in WordPress on Ubuntu.

After following the instructions, I tried to open my wordpress site in the browser and got a “you do not have access” error. After much reading, I tried changing export APACHE_RUN_USER=www-data to export APACHE_RUN_USER=wp-user in the file /etc/apache2/envvar and now it works.

All of the files in the /var/www directories have permissions like this:

drwxrwxr-x  2 wp-user www-data  4096 Aug 14 15:42 backup
-rwxrw-r--  1 wp-user www-data 11510 Mar 24 12:09 index.html
-rwxrw-r--  1 wp-user www-data   418 Sep 24  2013 index.php
-rwxrw-r--  1 wp-user www-data    20 Mar 24 12:09 info.php
-rwxrw-r--  1 wp-user www-data 19930 Jan  1  2015 license.txt
-rwxrw-r--  1 wp-user www-data  7360 Jul 30 16:39 readme.html
-rwxrw-r--  1 wp-user www-data  4951 Aug 20  2014 wp-activate.php
drwxrw-r--  9 wp-user www-data  4096 Aug  4 07:51 wp-admin

My question is whether this is the correct and secure way to do it. Are the permissions set correctly? Is it OK to give w to the group? Should it be r-x?

The tutorial says nothing about changing any files. I did notice that the tutorial refers to Ubuntu 12.xx. Is there a difference between Ubuntu 12 and 14?

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Just saw this: I changed the group and other to r-x.