Proposal to Increase the Maximum Ticket Price for WordCamps

In order to make WordCamp as affordable as possible for the community, the maximum ticket price for WordCamps is set at the local equivalent of US$20 per day. This has been the case for many years and it has been very effective at making sure that WordCamps remain accessible to the broader WordPress community.

To quote from the handbook page linked above:

Extremely affordable tickets allow everyone in your community to attend WordCamp, lowering the barrier to entry for attendance as much as humanly possible. This helps build your community, as people who might not be able to afford higher ticket prices can join in and share their experiences with WordPress. A large community with diverse perspectives is good for local events and activities.

This maximum WordCamp ticket price has been static for over 7 years, so perhaps the time has come to revisit it. Inflation is pushing prices up globally and we’re finding that more and more WordCamps are struggling to hit their financial targets.

If it’s agreed that the maximum ticket price should go up it doesn’t mean WordCamps have to raise their prices locally, if they don’t want to or don’t need to. We always have (and will continue to) actively encourage organisers to set their prices as low as possible and to only go for the maximum price if they absolutely have to do so.

So, the question is – do you think the maximum WordCamp ticket price should change? And if you think it should go up, what should the new maximum be?

Please comment here with your thoughts about this and, once we have a decision either way, we can move forward from there.

Meetup Application Vetting Sprint – 26 & 27 September

In order to get through the large backlog of meetup applications that are currently in need of vetting, we are going to be joining together in two 1-hour vetting sprints next week!

What is a vetting sprint?

A vetting sprint for meetup applications is a 1 hour session where all available deputies meet together in the #community-team channel in the WordPress Slack group. Over the course of the hour, we will all work on vetting meetup applications and use the Slack channel as a central place to discuss what we’re working on and support each other.

Who can take part?

Any deputies who have access to the Meetup Tracker can take part. That means people who have completed the deputy training, signed the agreement and been given access to the tracker (details about the tracker here).

If you are a deputy who has been active in the last 6 months, then you would have been added to the tracker already, but if you don’t have access and still want to take part then please comment here and we can give you access.

When is this happening?

We have two sprints planned for next week, so we can accommodate as many time zones as possible. The two times are:

These times have been added to the Deputy Calendar for easy reference.

How does it work?

As explained above, we will meet in the #community-team channel on Slack at the times listed and dive into vetting meetup applications. Here are some handy links that you will need on the day:

New tool for Community Deputies: Meetup Tracker

Hi Community Deputies!
I’m glad to announce that we will not have to use the “Meetup Status Doc” sheet anymore since today! Hope you are as happy as I am with this news 😀

The Meetup Tracker is a new tool that the Global Community Team will use to track all current Meetup.com groups, and new Meetup applications received via the new form for the Meetup Chapter Program.

This tool is hosted in the dashboard of central.wordcamp.org, and if you’re an active Community Deputy who has been vetting Meetup applications and/or sending swag for the last 6 months, you should have received access to it already.

This is the list of deputies added to the new Meetup Tracker tool: @sippis @bph @angelasjin @kcristiano @remediosgraphic @chanthaboune @nukaga @mayukojpn @courtneypk @nao @enigmaweb @andreamiddleton @mariaojob @hardeepasrani @drebbitsweb @psykro @wpaleks @adityakane @francina @camikaos @laryswan @00sleepy @hlashbrooke @carl-alberto @_dorsvenabili

For more info and instructions about how to proceed and use the new tool when vetting Meetup applications and when sending swag, go and check the new page “Meetup Tracker” in the Deputy Handbook or ask in #community-team.

Ta-da! That is everything you need to do to help track Meetups. Thanks for all you do to keep Meetups around the world happy, healthy, and organized! <3

Handling Community Team Meetings on 1-7 October 2018

As mentioned in this post the Automattic sponsored staff members of the Global Community Team, who often (but not always) handle Office Hours and lead the bi-monthly Community Team Chat, will be at a company offsite meeting from 1-7 October 2018. This means that we need to make sure that we have deputies who can commit to being online and available to handle these things during that time.

Office Hours

Here are the times for Office Hours – please tick the box if you can handle that session (if it is already ticked by someone else, then you can still join to assist):

We would love to have more than one deputy available at each time slot, so please comment here even if someone else has committed to a time that you will also be available for.

Community Team Chat

We have our bi-monthly Community Team Chat that week, which takes place at two different times in order to cater for all time zones. Here are the two times – if you can lead the meeting for that time, then please tick the box:

One of the meeting leads will also need to post the meeting agenda on this P2 a day or two before the meeting (example agenda post), so don’t forget to do that as well!

Weekly Updates

Hello to all our Deputies, WordCamp organizers, Meetup wranglers, and WordPress Community builders! You were probably hard at work this weekend. Tell us what you got accomplished in our #weekly-update!

Have you run into a roadblock with the stuff you’re working on? Head over to #community-events or #community-team in Slack and ask for help!

Meetup Organiser Badge Proposal

As we published yesterday, the new Meetup Tracker comes with a lot of great new benefits, including the fact the we will be able to link meetup groups with each organiser’s WordPress.org profile. This means that we can finally give out user profile badges to meetup organisers.

We need to decide what icon and colour to use for this badge, so here is a proposal for discussion:

  • Colour: #f7ad43
  • Icon: dashicons-nametag

This will make the badge the same colour as the WordCamp Organiser and WordCamp Speaker badges (so all of our community involvement badges are the same colour), and the icon is the one we already use in the WordPress Events and News widget to indicate a meetup event. This will keep things logical and consistent across the network.

If we go with that icon and colour combination, here’s what the badge will look like in context:

The badge will be automatically assigned based on the WordPress.org usernames that we have for the organisers of each group once the group is live and in our chapter account.

We’ll leave this post open for comments until the end of this week (16 September 2018) before finalising the badge design and setting it up for profiles.

Community Team Chat Agenda | Thursday, 20 September 2018

Hey Team!

Our bi-monthly Community Team chat is happening this Thursday, 20 September 2018. Meeting times are Thursday, 19 September 2018 at 11:00 UTC and Thursday, 19 September 2018 at 20:00 UTC in #community-team on Slack – we use the same agenda for both meetings in order to include all time zones.

Agenda

  1. Deputy check-in:
    What have you been doing and how is it going?
  2. Payments offline for a week:
    As announced, all of the deputies who handle payments will be offline for the first week of October, so payments will be on hold for that time.
  3. Office Hours and Team Chat for first week of October:
    As with payments, we will also need to make sure that we have deputies able to cover Office Hours and the Community Team Chat for 1-7 October – details here.
  4. Call for meetup application vetting:
    We have a lot of meetup applications that need vetting in the new Meetup Tracker – please jump in there whenever you can.
  5. P2 posts needing review/feedback:

Please add any additional items to this agenda by commenting on this post as needed.

#meeting #agenda

Meetup organizer newsletter suggestions for September?

Friends, we’re about to start drafting the September edition of the meetup organizers newsletter — if there are any topics you’d recommend we include, or any interesting meetup event formats you think are worth highlighting, could you please comment on this post by the end of this week? 🙂 Thanks!!! #meetups-2 #newsletter

Input Requested: “Building A Diverse Speaker Roster” Document

Hello! The Diversity Outreach Speaker Training group is creating a document for WordPress Meetups and WordCamps entitled: “Building A Diverse Speaker Roster.”

Before we post it in the handbook, we would like to get your feedback on it, please.

Deadline: 11:59pm Pacific time Sunday, Sept 23 (6:59am UTC Monday, Sept 24)

I am posting the content below. You can make suggestions by commenting on this post or by doing it directly in the Google doc:
https://t.co/I9kqujqHpq


Document: “Building A Diverse Speaker Roster”

Lack of Diversity

Have you noticed that there is mainly one kind of speaker at your WordPress events?

It is a common phenomenon in technology for those who belong to the major population of an area to become the ones to do most of the public speaking. Those who do not fit into that group have many reasons not to step up to speak, – for example, they may not view themselves as belonging to that group, or they may not believe they have anything of value to contribute. As a result, the kinds of speakers at tech events – in our case WordPress events – can frequently become homogeneous.

In North America, for example, many speakers at WordPress events are young, white, cisgender, straight men. There are so many other voices that aren’t being heard as much: women, non-binary and trans folk, genderqueer folk, LGBTQ+, people of colour, people of various physical abilities, people with varying mental health, folks who are older, etc.

Why?

Why does it matter who is at the front of the room speaking?

  1. The audience is not represented by the speakers

Many WordPress events are successfully expanding the kinds of folks who are in the audience. For example, there have been more women-identifying WordPress event attendees in Vancouver, Ottawa, Toronto, and Montreal, Canada. That doesn’t mean that everyone in the audience is reflected in the speaker roster – a different group may feel like they don’t belong there. But there are many folks with a wide range of knowledge to share and everyone can feel included.

  1. Users are not represented by the speakers

WordPress is amazing in that it is open source and so all sorts of people use it. We want a more fair representation of our users among the people who are speaking.

  1. Our speakers help shape our technology

One of the ways in which WordPress is being shaped is by the people who speak about it publicly. Many diverse folks, by nature of having had different life experiences, would approach problems differently. Just as how a developer’s point of view is different from a user’s point of view, so are our viewpoints vs the standard speaker. Many people have experiences that aren’t necessarily being shared right now.

  1. Diverse technology needs

If only one kind of person is speaking about the technology, they may be missing key issues that don’t affect them but would prevent other kinds of folks from having the same, positive experiences and success. Size of text and color contrast are two simple, but significant examples. There is much more that can be considered if folks who are affected have the opportunity to speak up.

  1. Unique perspectives benefit everyone

Different kinds of people bring in different kinds of ideas that benefit everyone. A famous example in the physical world is the curb cuts that were first installed to help disabled veterans in the 1940s. They turned out to benefit many more people than the group for which they were originally intended.

By bringing in more diverse people, there’s also an increased chance of bringing in folks who straddle several roles, thus creating unique things with unique perspectives. Power users who use technology in interesting ways, front-end developers, business people who use plugins to make specific kinds of sites, typographers who use WordPress to do cool things with typography… People to talk about running a business in WordPress, how developers can communicate with designers, different things you can do with WordPress… etc.

Now that you know why it is a great idea to build up a diverse speaker roster, let’s look at some challenges in doing so and some potential solutions.

None In My Community

There are no diverse folks in my community

  • There are no diverse people coming out to your events, and you don’t know any personally who do WordPress.

Solutions:

  • Ask your network for folks they know of those groups who do WordPress that they could introduce you to.
  • Find those communities in your area – online and in person. Try to form genuine, friendly relationships with members so that they can then help you reach the WordPress enthusiasts in their communities.

None applied to speak

No diverse people have applied to speak for my event

  • There are diverse folks who do WordPress in your community, yet they are not applying to be speakers.

Solution: Ask them directly. They may tell you their reasons they wish not to and if they do, listen. The following replies can help. See the next few points.

Nothing to talk about

I ask them directly and they say no because they think they have nothing to talk about

  • Typically, when member of the dominant group of a region knows a little bit about a topic, they feel like they know enough to give a talk about it. Conversely, frequently when someone from an underrepresented group knows a little bit about a topic, they don’t feel they know enough to talk about it.
  • Thus, when we ask diverse people: “Would you like to apply to speak at our WordCamp?” we often get these two answers:
    • “What would I talk about?”
    • “I don’t know enough to give a talk,” or “I’m not an expert in anything”

Solutions:

  • Mentor them on the spot. Suggest things you know they could talk about. Explain that you don’t need how-tos but rather stories. Stories are more engaging for audiences. Everyone’s an expert in their own story. Ask if they have a good story about something that they’ve learned or mistakes they’ve made. If they feel they haven’t learned anything yet, one idea is to suggest that they take notes as they start to learn so that they can tell their story about it.
  • Run our Speaker Training [& Diversity Outreach] workshop that will help them see they have many things they could talk about, and also helps them through many other obstacles they may have currently to public speaking:
http://diversespeakers.info/


(Please tell us you’re running it so we can track how many trainings happen in a given year and/or request help with it here:

     http://tiny.cc/wpwomenspeak )

Nervous about public speaking

I ask and they say no because they don’t feel comfortable public speaking yet

  • They have no experience with public speaking or have had bad experiences with it and are not feeling comfortable doing it (but they do want to).

Solutions:

  • Small steps to build confidence are valuable. Suggest that they speak first to:
    • the mirror
    • a video camera
    • pets
    • friends and family
    • smaller Meetups
    • your local WordPress Meetup (before speaking at a WordCamp)
    • etc.

  • Suggest they be the moderator of a panel of a topic that they are interested in.
  • Suggest they give a lightning talk. Ten minutes is a great way to start.
  • Suggest they give a duo talk with someone who is a confident speaker.
  • Remind them that just about every public speaker is nervous, even if they don’t look like it!

Q&A

I ask and they say no because of the Q&A section

  • Handling the Q&A section is preventing them from being willing to speak

Solution:

  • Read through our info about that in our workshop material. We have solutions for:
    • Tricky questions
    • The smarty-pants
    • Unrelated questions
    • Silence
https://github.com/wptrainingteam/becoming-a-better-speaker#handling-qa
  • Let them know that they don’t have to have a Q&A section. Some speakers and events have done away with it.           

Being An Effective Ally

I want to help with diversity but I don’t know how.

You are in a position where you can offer to do more to help, and don’t know what to do.

Solution:

  • Offer to help them with their talk proposals. Their talk may be great, but if the proposal isn’t good, it won’t even be considered.
  • Offer to help them with crafting their talks and slides.
  • Offer to be a person they can rehearse with.
  • Read over our workshop materials at http://diversespeakers.info/ and use that info to help them.

Call For Diverse Speakers

How can we write our Call for Speakers in a way that encourages a diverse range of applicants?

  • You don’t know how to write up the speaker call-out on your WordCamp website to encourage more diverse applicants

Solutions:

  • Let them know they don’t need to be experts. You’re interested in all range of experiences. Everyone’s voice is valuable and interesting.
  • Encourage stories.
  • Encourage them to talk about anything in WordPress that they are passionate about. Remind them that non-technical talks are also welcome, such as users, community, design, marketing, and others.
  • Folks with impostor syndrome – which is more common amongst people of diversity – will self-select themselves out when they see words like these:
    • Rock star
    • Superhero
    • Ninja
    • Jedi
    • Guru
    • Genius

Use a tool like https://textio.com/ to make your writing more inviting for more people.

  • Be mindful of using photos throughout the site for your event that show different types of people so that it is clear that diverse people are welcomed at the event. Be sure to include them on the call for speakers page.

Accessible Events

What invisible things are preventing a more diverse group of people from attending and speaking at our events?

  • We don’t know what invisible things are preventing more kinds of people from attending and speaking at our events

Solutions:

  • Don’t use gendered words like:
    • Guys
    • Girls
    • Women
    • Men
    • Ladies
    • Gentlemen
    • Etc.
  • Instead opt for words such as:
    • Folks
    • People
    • Friends
    • Assembled guests
    • Colleagues
    • Esteemed colleagues
    • Y’all
    • Guests
    • Esteemed Guests
    • Collaborators
    • My companions
    • Partners
    • All assembled
    • etc.
  • Offer childcare.
  • Have the event at different times that work for people with families. Don’t hold them all at 9pm at night. Weekend afternoons may work. Ask those with children what works for them.
  • Elevators and ramps rather than stairs.
  • Washrooms:
    • Have washrooms that are trans friendly
    • Have single stall toilets available for trans women who may prefer it and for non-binary folk.
    • Washrooms that are power wheelchair accessible
  • Request no one wear scents for the folk who are allergic.
  • Live captioning.
  • Sign language interpreters.
  • Pronouns on your name badges so that people who don’t use the binary pronouns feel welcome. One suggestion is to make this optional so that folks who don’t feel comfortable outing their pronouns in public yet won’t feel obliged, and those who don’t feel comfortable without proper pronouns will feel included with the majority of folks sharing theirs.
  • Not everyone may want their photos online. It could be for personal reasons or even in some cases, safety reasons. Allow a way for people to opt out of being photographed, such as having a different color lanyard.
  • Anything else you can think of that expands the kind of person who can speak at and come to your event.

Following these suggestions will help in the road to including more people; that kind of radical inclusion creates an amazing space of respect and innovation for everyone.


Thank you in advance for your help!

#wpwomenspeak

Calling all Meetup Group Organisers!

We’ve recently been working on a new platform for managing meetup applications and keeping track of them in a central system. One of the benefits of this system is that we will finally be able to assign WordPress.org profile badges to all WordPress meetup group organisers!

We’re very excited to make this happen, but we need your help! In order to assign the badges and to fill out our system correctly, we need the WordPress.org usernames of all WordPress meetup group organisers. Without this we won’t be able to assign badges, and it will be harder for us to keep in contact with organisers using the new system.

To provide us with the WordPress.org usernames of all of WordPress meetup group organisers, we need all current organisers to add the info to this sheet: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1LYnNDDpBQC7przZyufG4W5mdO67BcTTy_yz8eHY24lc/edit?usp=sharing

Please fill in the fields next to the URL for your meetup group. The fields need the following information:

  • WordPress.org username for main contact: The WordPress.org username of the organiser who is the main contact with the Global Community Team (if there is no one person for this, then choose anyone from your team)
  • WordPress.org usernames of all organisers: A comma-separated list of the WordPress.org usernames of all of your meetup group’s organisers
  • Is the main contact’s WordPress.org email address still valid?: Select ‘Yes’ if the email address on the WordPress.org profile for the main contact is correct and in use, or select ‘No’ if it is not.

Thanks!