Recently, there have been questions about diversity at WordPress events, especially WordCamps. The Community team values and prioritizes diversity, as the more diverse our community is, the stronger, more innovative, and more resilient it becomes.
Increasing diversity in WordPress events is not the responsibility of just one continent, community, event, or team. Everyone can make a difference. Talking about diversity is not new for the WordPress community, but I am particularly glad that to have this conversation at this time.
For one, because of the pandemic, there are new barriers to participation that may not have been considered. Second, organizers are cautiously restarting in-person events. This is a potentially impactful time to gain a better understanding of what barriers underrepresented community members face, what empowers individuals to participate at WordPress events, and how to support organizers in creating more inclusive spaces.
On top of that, a unique opportunity and simultaneous challenge for global communities like WordPress is how to honor diversity in local areas and cultures AND celebrate the diversity of our global community as a whole.
To that end, I only have my perspective and experience, and I’m missing information in my current understanding of diversity across our big, global community. So, I’d like to hear from you.
Over the years, I’ve heard many solutions and suggestions on how to address challenges around diversity, which is awesome! But because the global situation has shifted so much, I would like to hear about your experience with diversity at WordPress WordCamps and Meetups 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. first, so that the Community Team has a deeper understanding of where experiences match and where they differ.
Talking about diversity can be deeply personal, so please do not feel you need to participate if you don’t feel comfortable. You can comment on this post, or if you prefer, I welcome chatting with you directly, and you can DM me in the Making WordPress Slack Slack is a Collaborative Group Chat Platform https://slack.com/. The WordPress community has its own Slack Channel at https://make.wordpress.org/chat/..
To the extent you feel comfortable, I’d love to hear:
- What country are you based in?
- Do you participate in WordCamps or Meetups, and if so, how? (participation can include attending, speaking, sponsoring, or organizing)
- What prevents you from participating in WordCamps or Meetups?
- What challenges are you seeing in diversity today?
- How does your community define diversity?
- What have you seen or experienced that increased diversity in your community?
- What have you seen or experienced that decreased diversity in your community?
In sharing our stories, I hope to learn more about you, and that everyone who reads this discussion might learn about someone else’s experience!
Please share your story in the comments below by Monday, February 28, 2022, after which I will close this post for comments with a summary of key takeaways and learnings. Because the goal of this discussion is to learn more about individual experiences with diversity around the world, it is difficult to say what next steps or outcomes of this discussion will be! However, this is an important and helpful step in identifying where the Community team could strengthen the WordPress events program, and will certainly result in future proposals for discussion.
A note for this post in particular
Please focus comments on sharing your experiences only – I know WordPressers all have excellent and different ideas towards diversity, but that is not what this post is about! That will come later 🙂