Updated Guidelines for In-Person WordCamps and Meetups 2022

TL;DR: The Community team has new, mandatory guidelines for all WordCamps and MeetupsMeetup Meetup groups are locally-organized groups that get together for face-to-face events on a regular basis (commonly once a month). Learn more about Meetups in our Meetup Organizer Handbook., which include following local guidelines, checking for vaccinations where legally permissible and mandatory masks. In areas where the venue cannot legally check for vaccination status, the area must pass the in-person checklist. See “New guidelines” below for full details.

Thank you to everyone who participated in the recent proposal for updated safety measures for WordPress events in 2022. It speaks volumes of the WordPress community that so many of contributors shared their thoughts on this topic.

Some background

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Community team has worked to continually adapt the WordCampWordCamp WordCamps are casual, locally-organized conferences covering everything related to WordPress. They're one of the places where the WordPress community comes together to teach one another what they’ve learned throughout the year and share the joy. Learn more. program — a formidable challenge in this dynamic environment. I am grateful to the deputiesProgram Supporter Community Program Supporters (formerly Deputies) are a team of people worldwide who review WordCamp and Meetup applications, interview lead organizers, and keep things moving at WordCamp Central. Find more about program supporters in our Program Supporter Handbook., organizers, sponsors, volunteers, and attendees who continue to support this team. 

It could make things easier if organizers were simply asked to follow local guidelines when planning a WordCamp. In reading comments on the recent post, I am reminded that many local governments are in similar situations: at the whim of when and what the next variant will bring, and debating best approaches to safety. 

For the WordPress Community team, the priority since the start of this pandemic has always been the safety of community members. 

To be clear, the Community team is not recommending safety guidelines outside of official WordPress events. That is best left to health professionals to determine. For the WordPress Community, another important consideration needs to be the health of the events program. As you might imagine, the people who support this program really, truly, deeply want events that connect and inspire WordPress enthusiasts to continue! Moving forward with in-person events that risk the health of community members is unacceptable, and also poses risks to the program itself. 

New guidelines 

It is with all of this in mind that the following new guidelines will be mandatory for all WordCamps, and all Meetups that anticipate more than 50 attendees.

  1. Follow local laws and guidelines. If your locality has suggested guidelines on top of mandatory ones, follow those too. 
  2. If you are in a location where local laws or guidelines require or permit venues to limit admission based on a person’s vaccination status and masking, then WordCamps can only happen in venues that are willing to provide staff to check for vaccination status at the door and to remind participants to wear masks during the event. 
  3. If your area or venue legally cannot check vaccination status, your area must pass the in-person checklist at the time of the application, and again at the time of the event. Additionally, the venue must be willing to provide staff who will remind participants to wear masks and check for temperature during the event. Organizers in these areas must be prepared to move online or cancel if the region fails the safety checklist.

Here is a visualization of these new guidelines.

The Community team will also continue to support online events at this time. If your meetupMeetup Meetup groups are locally-organized groups that get together for face-to-face events on a regular basis (commonly once a month). Learn more about Meetups in our Meetup Organizer Handbook. has fewer than 50 attendees, you can move forward with your event following local guidelines/laws. The Community team recommends that you organize the event only for attendees who are fully vaccinated or recently tested negative (within 2 days). 

Next steps and feedback

These new guidelines will be added to all the appropriate places in the WordCamp organizers handbook, and a summarized version of this decision will be included in upcoming Meetup Newsletters. If you have questions, concerns, or feedback, please share them in a comment on this post.

Update (25 January) 

The WordCamp and Meetup Handbook pages have been updated to reflect these changes:

#meetups, #wordcamps