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Experiment: WordCamp Incubator

Posted February 18, 2016 by Jen. Filed under Community, Events, WordCamp.

WordCamps are locally-organized WordPress conferences that happen all over the world (and are so fun). Sometimes people don’t realize that WordCamps are organized by local volunteers rather than a central organization, and they contact us asking, “Can?you bring WordCamp to my city?” When this happens, we always?suggest they start with a meetup?group, and think about organizing a WordCamp themselves after their group has been active for a few months. We emphasize that WordCamps are?locally-organized events, not something that the central community team plans from afar.

This has been successful in many areas — there are currently 241 meetup groups on our meetup.com chapter program! In some regions, though, enthusiastic volunteers have had more of a challenge getting things started. Because?of this, we’re going to try an experiment this year called the WordCamp Incubator.

The intention of the incubator program is to help spread WordPress to underserved areas through providing?more significant organizing support for a first event. In practical terms, this experiment means we’ll be choosing?three cities in 2016 where there is not an active WordPress community — but where it seems like there is a lot of potential and where there are some people excited to become organizers — and will help to organize their first WordCamp. These WordCamps will be?small, one-day, one-track events geared toward the goal of generating interest and getting people involved in creating an ongoing local community.*

So, where should we do these three events? ?If you have always wanted a WordCamp in your city but haven’t been able to get a meetup group going, this is?a great opportunity. We will be taking applications for the next week, then will get in touch with everyone who applied to discuss the possibilities. We will announce the ?cities chosen by the end of March.

To apply, fill in the application by February 26, 2016. You don’t need to have any specific information handy, it’s just a form to let us know you’re interested. You can apply to nominate your city even if you don’t want to be the main organizer, but for this experiment ?we will need local liaisons and volunteers, so please only nominate cities where you live or work so that we have at least one local connection to begin.

Thanks, and good luck!

*?For the record, that describes the ideal first WordCamp even if you have an active meetup — there’s no need to wait until your group is big enough to support a large multi-day event, and small events are a lot of fun because everyone has a chance to be involved and get to know most of the other attendees.

 

See Also:

Want to follow the code? There’s a development P2 blog?and you can track active development in the Trac timeline?that often has 20–30 updates per day.

Want to find an event near you? Check out the WordCamp schedule and find your local Meetup group!

For more WordPress news, check out the WordPress Planet.

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