Incident Report: Recent Cancelation of a WordCamp

Recently, members of the Community Team and Incident Response Team took steps to cancel a scheduled 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.. This was an unfortunate but necessary decision on our part, and we want to provide more clarity regarding the factors that led to this decision.

The decision to cancel the event was not a result of inadequate planning or insufficient effort on the part of the organizing team. Instead, there were observable actions from local community members to influence decisions that would benefit specific individuals or companies. When this influence did not immediately lead to their desired results, the individuals aimed to undermine the organizing process and event success. While the Community Team took steps to mediate, the inappropriate behavior and actions we saw necessitated the cancelation. This is a rare and extreme decision and underscores the severity of the situation.

In response to such behavior, these actions were taken:

  • Those who demonstrated unacceptable actions received formal notices in accordance with the Code of Conduct. Response plans included the removal of a deputyProgram 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. and mentorEvent Supporter Event Supporter (formerly Mentor) is someone who has already organised a WordCamp and has time to meet with their assigned mentee every 2 weeks, they talk over where they should be in their timeline, help them to identify their issues, and also identify solutions for their issues. role and banning involved companies from sponsorship of WordPress events for a period of one year. 
  • As the issue extended to the local 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. as well, all Co-Organizers and Event Organizers were removed from their roles and were asked to repeat Meetup organizer orientation to gain access again.

In times of challenges like these, it is important to remember that anyone can organize WordPress events regardless of who they work for and that WordPress community events are for the benefit of everyone, not any one business or individual. As a community, we will not tolerate harassment or influencing unacceptable behaviors

🔖 Reference: Agreement among WordCamp Organizers, Speakers, Sponsors, and Volunteers

We are hopeful the community will really come together, fostering a culture centered on collaboration and community values.