Update: APAC Meetup Reactivation Project

Last July, the 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. Reactivation Project was launched. We sought support from around the world as we believe local community leaders have the networks and experiences to help reactivate WordPress 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..

Three updates on the Global Meetup Reactivation Project have been published: in September, November, and December. We have yet to share the next update this year.

In December 2022, the APAC Meetup Reactivation team met and decided to share stories from the APAC community to learn from and inspire each other. We also want to appreciate the dedication and enthusiasm of the APAC supporters for this project. Kudos to everyone!

APAC Meetup Reactivation Supporters

  1. Ricky Blacker from Australia @rickyblacker
  2. Wil Brown from Australia @developerwil
  3. Afshana Diya from Bangladesh @afshanadiya
  4. Ahmed Chaion from Bangladesh @chaion07
  5. Mainul Kabir Aion from Bangladesh @aion11
  6. Mizanur Rahaman Mizan from Bangladesh @technocrews
  7. Aditya Kane from India @adityakane
  8. Aditya Shah from India @ethicaladitya
  9. Abhishek Prabhu from India @abyshakes
  10. Pooja Derashri from India @webtechpooja
  11. Yogesh Londhe from India @yoga1103
  12. Kharis Sulistiyono from Indonesia @kharisblank
  13. Sinar Hadi Wijaya from Indonesia @sinarhadiwijaya
  14. Junko Nukaga from Japan @nukaga
  15. Naoko Takano from Japan @nao
  16. Shusei Toda from Japan @st810amaze
  17. Yam Chhetri from Nepal @yamchhetri
  18. JC Palmes from Philippines @khleomix
  19. Lax Mariappan from Philippines @lakshmananphp
  20. Oneal Rosero from Philippines @onealtr
  21. Muhammad Usman Khalid from Pakistan @usmankhalid 
  22. Shakir Ali from Pakistan @engrshakirali

APAC WordPress Meetups in Numbers (as of Feb 2023)

  • 95 chapters were dormant as of May 2022.
  • 1 chapter in Japan was closed/removed from the program.
  • 51 chapters were reactivated.
  • 43 chapters are still in progress.

The APAC Meetup Reactivation Stories

Ricky Blacker, Australia

WordPress meetups in Australia are slowly coming back online, we have seen a few already getting back on track, the Sydney meetup has led the charge not only in being among the first to have in-person meetups again but have kept the community informed and engaged during the worst of Covid with regular online meetups and presentations, much Kudos to Wil Brown for his tireless hard work here.

The Melbourne meetup also resumed in-person meetups but seems to have stagnated for now. We saw the welcome return of the Sunshine Coast meetup in January, with the plan to carry this on every month.

The Brisbane meetup is looking to resume in-person meetups in March with a focus on finding a long-term solution for a venue and how the community would like to see the meetups proceed in the future.

Generally, across all meetups in Australia, we are battling with trying to get the momentum going again, as well as trying to solve the problem of finding a suitable venue for meetups as many have lost their regular space during covid, but the community is keen to get back to having monthly in-person meetups again and I can envisage that by the end of this year, we should see most resume back to normal.

Mainul Kabir Aion, Bangladesh 

We had two big meetups in November 2022 in Dhaka. They covered more than 200 people and created the biggest buzz ever and bringing many WP veterans together. Bangladesh is all about diversity and it was amazing to witness individuals coming together to celebrate during meetups.

The Sylhet group was reactivated thanks to the supporters. They followed the footsteps of the mega meetups and organized their version of it. Folks from the Dhaka community went there as well and 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. Sylhet was planned.

The Rangpur meetup chapter was also reactivated and continues their meetup after a long time. They have invited experienced developers as speakers. The most unique part is – they will treat everyone with tasty ducks and traditional pitas after the event!

Pooja Derashri, India

I am so happy to be a part of this Reactivation project because it has given me the opportunity to interact with other Meetup chapters in India. Overall, the project has been a mixed experience for me. Some groups have been very responsive, and we have been able to quickly schedule Meetups, while others have been less responsive. In some cases, they have assured me that they will organize a Meetup soon or next month, but when I follow up a month later, they are still saying they are in the planning stage. In my opinion, these groups may have limited bandwidth and are unable to run a Meetup, but they do not want to give up their role as organizers, so they are making false commitments. With perseverance and consistent efforts, we will be able to reactivate our fellow Meetup chapters.

Kharis Sulistiyono, Indonesia

I used the strategy of educating organizers and members about the importance of Meetups and the benefits of being part of the WordPress community. I also encouraged them to collaborate and share their experiences and ideas. This helped increase their motivation to revive the Meetups.

Here are key points I shared with the community:

  • Host a meetup on the home’s terrace: https://www.instagram.com/p/CiWFKvTv-Hn/
  • Host a meetup without an external speaker, instead be confident in leading the gathering format with a specific topic for discussion.
  • While choosing a meetup topic, avoid using generic wording and instead use persuasive language. For example, instead of a generic topic like “How to create a website with WordPress,” use an attractive topic such as “How to create an effective sales funnel with a landing page.”
  • Write a blog post about reactivating your dormant meetup strategy and share it with the community on social media channels: https://kharis.risbl.com/2022/08/03/5-strategi-sederhana-dalam-mengaktifkan-wordpress-meetup-tegal/

Junko Nukaga, Naoko Takano and Shusei Toda, Japan

In 2022, a total of 133 Meetups were held in Japan, both online and offline, in a style suited to each region. In addition to the regular Meetups, two Mega Meetups were held in Japan, where Meetup organizers from across the country came together.

Some groups returned to holding in-person events, others continued to hold online events, and some of them even introduced new styles of Meetup such as photo walks and inter-group collaboration.

Although one group was deactivated, a new group was started. Some regions were not able to hold meetups due to the pandemic, but some groups restarted through the Reactivation Project, and the Japanese community is still very active.

JC Palmes, Philippines

The WordPress Meetup Reactivation for Iloilo was a success due to the willingness of everyone involved. Despite a nearly three-year hiatus, the community had remained connected online

but not officially. This made it easier to get everyone together again and discuss plans for reactivating the group.

The coreCore Core is the set of software required to run WordPress. The Core Development Team builds WordPress. group had no issue with meeting right away and discussing our plans for WordCamp 2023 and other activities for the year. Everyone seemed eager to resume after such a long break, which made decision-making smooth and effortless.

This experience showed the strength of our community bond, even after such a long break, both in person or online. We are all willing and ready at any given moment if ever needed! The experience also served as motivation that despite everything else going on around us, we can still come together and work towards something bigger than ourselves!

Oneal Rosero, Philippines

In late 2022, after some prompting from the Meetup Reactivation team, the WordPress Manila meetup group held a hybrid meeting in October 2022, with about five attendees in person at the local Pantheon office and seven more over zoom. This helped create a nice balance of online and in-person participation. They held a translation workshop led by the Polyglots teamPolyglots Team Polyglots Team is a group of multilingual translators who work on translating plugins, themes, documentation, and front-facing marketing copy. https://make.wordpress.org/polyglots/teams/.. Four people got the badges for helping translate content into Tagalog. The last time the Manila Meetup group held an in-person meeting was in late 2019.

In January 2023, the Manila Meetup team organized an in-person meetup at the Pantheon office in BGC, there were 23 people in attendance. The talks ranged from site builders to security and I was able to talk briefly to invite people to contribute to the learn.WordPress.org teams.

Among the attendees of the Manila meetup in January 2023 were people who live in Cavite but work in Manila and they expressed interest in reactivating the Cavite Meetup with new and more experienced members.

In late 2022, the Meetup group in Baguio was also contacted, but they felt  like they didn’t have enough active members to run a WordCamp, but they are looking to restart Meetups early in 2023

I also got in touch with the Meetup group in Cebu. They held an in-person Meetup in December 2022. In February 2023, they will host WordCamp Cebu 2023 with local and international speakers.

If you are aware of an inactive WordPress Meetup group in your area and are keen to help reactivate it, please get in touch with us! You can become a co-organizer and play a role in bringing together WordPress enthusiasts in your area.

You can locate your nearest Meetup group by visiting this page. If there is no WordPress Meetup group in your area, you have the option to start one by joining the Meetup Chapter Program.

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