2021: Returning to in-person meetups

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, most WordPress events are online. Please refer to our online events handbook.

For communities where COVID-19 has been more effectively contained or have easy access to COVID-19 vaccination and/or testing, returning to hosting an in-person 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. event is possible, with caution, using the resources provided. If you plan to move forward with an in-person meetup, you must use the provided checklist .

In 2020, WordPress events moved online in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. After many discussions, the Global Community TeamGlobal Community Team A group of community organizers and contributors who collaborate on local events about WordPress — monthly WordPress meetups and/or annual conferences called WordCamps. made a decision to help WordPress meetup organizers return to hosting in-person meetups with caution, in communities that have more effectively contained COVID-19 or have vaccines/testing freely available.

The WordPress community team is not expecting or requiring local organizers to organize in-person events, even for fully vaccinated people — we’re simply removing the barrier to doing so. Organizers can continue planning online events for their group – even if it is safe in their regions to organize in-person events. 

The in-person meetup guidelines have been updated in accordance with the latest community team decision to open up meetups for fully vaccinated folks in areas where vaccination and testing is freely available.

Can I organize in-person events for my WordPress meetup? Can I organize in-person events for my WordPress meetup?

The guidelines for organizing in-person WordPress meetup events are as follows: 

If:

  1. local public health authorities say people can gather in person, AND
  2. your region passes page 1 guidelines in the updated in-person safety checklist, THEN
  3. go ahead and hold in-person events, following local health guidelines!

ALSO… If:

  1. local public health authorities say people can gather in person, AND
  2. your region doesn’t pass page 1 guidelines in the updated in-person safety checklist, BUT
  3. vaccines or COVID tests are available for anyone who wants one in your region, THEN

Local community organizers can (if they want to) plan in-person meetup events for people who:

  • are fully vaccinated, or
  • recently tested negative, or
  • recently recovered (in the last 3 months)

while always following local health guidelines!

If your region does not pass guidelines on page 1 of the updated in-person safety checklist and if vaccines/testing are not freely available, you can continue organizing online 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. until things improve. 

Here’s a visualization of those conditions, for your reference: 

Visual representation of the flow for organizing in-person events.

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Steps for organizing an in-person WordPress Meetup Steps for organizing an in-person WordPress Meetup

  1. First, check the local safety guidelines. Does your region have any local laws prohibiting in-person gatherings at this time? If so, you cannot organize an in-person meetup. 
  2. If your region allows in-person meetups, look up the local health data and use it to fill up updated the safety checklist and submit it. If you pass all the guidelines in page 1 of the checklist (i.e. if your answers to all questions in the checklist are “yes”), you ​​can organize an in-person meetup. The checklist will make a recommendation confirming this. Make sure that you fill up and submitting a survey as part of the checklist (your details, details of your meetup event, and planned dates, links to any health authorities). You do not need to wait for a reply from the Community Team, and can proceed to organize your event.
  3. If your answer to one or more questions in page 1 of the safety checklist is no, it asks you if Is COVID-19 vaccination AND/OR COVID-19 testing freely available in your country/region. Find out whether your region has vaccines and/or testing freely available to all (i.e. can anyone who wants to get vaccinated can walk in and get vaccinated without any hassle OR COVID tests are freely available and accessible to all), and choose the option in the safety checklist accordingly.
    1. If you entered in the safety checklist that vaccines and/or testing freely available are available in your region, it will make a recommendation that you can organize in-person meetups for people who:
      a) Are fully vaccinated OR
      b) Who recently tested negative OR
      c) Have recently recovered (in the last three months).
      Please proceed to fill up the survey in the checklist (your details, details of your meetup event, and planned dates, links to any health authorities). You can now proceed to organize your in-person meetup.
    2. If your region does not have vaccines or testing freely available to all, you cannot hold an in-person meetup at this time. The checklist will display a message confirming this decision. You should keep organizing online meetups until the situation improves.

To do this, the team has created the following resources to help meetup organizers:

  1. In-Person Meetup Decision Checklist – Organizers can use this checklist to determine whether they can, by the WordPress Community Team’s standards, proceed with hosting in-person meetups based on health authority data and organizer readiness. If you plan to move forward with an in-person meetup, you must submit this checklist to the Community team.
  2. References and links to Health Authorities – Because the checklist asks organizers to reference health authority data, the team has compiled a list of resources that organizers can utilize.
  3. Templates for Meetup Organizers – The team has written out some helpful language to assist meetup organizers in explaining to members how in-person meetups happen (or not). 
  4. Report Form – If an organizer or community member needs to connect with Community Team DeputiesDeputy Community Deputies are a team of people all over the world who review WordCamp and Meetup applications, interview lead organizers, and generally keep things moving at WordCamp Central. Find more about deputies in our Community Deputy Handbook. with concerns about local meetups, they can use this form.

For questions about this process, or if you have feedback to share, please email Community Team Deputies at support@wordcamp.org.

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