2016 Global Sponsorship Program

This page has information for companies interested in sponsoring WordPress community events through the Global Community Sponsorship program. If you are an event organizer looking for more information about global sponsors or the global community program in general, please check out Global Community Sponsorship — For Event Organizers in the WordCamp Organizing Handbook.

Sponsoring Community Events

Thanks for your interest in supporting the WordPress community via event sponsorship! We’re so grateful to our sponsors, because without them we couldn’t put on the events that help our community connect and grow.

When you sponsor an official WordPress event, you’re not giving money in exchange for marketing/advertising at the event or with the attendee audience. Sponsorships are donations, given to support the WordPress open source project.

There are two ways to sponsor: through the Global Community program, or through direct sponsorship of individual events.

WordPress Global Community Sponsorship in 2016

One out of every four websites is powered by WordPress, the free and open source software built and maintained by thousands of volunteers all over the world. The WordPress contributor community is made up of developers, designers, writers, photographers, freelancers, agency professionals, and hobbyists, many of whom gather regularly around the world at locally-organized monthly and annual events. Official WordPress community events are exclusively volunteer-organized, and each reflects the interests and expertise of the local community. In 2015, there were 2,016 meetings of official WordPress meetup groups and 89 local annual conferences, which we call WordCamps.

What’s a WordCamp?

WordCamp is the annual conference for local WordPress communities; it’s a casual, non-commercial, educational event about WordPress. Events range from intimate 50-person unconferences to multi-track conferences attended by over 1,000. Conference sessions topics include WordPress development, design, business, social media integration, blogging, and marketing. WordCamp tickets are sold at an extremely low price ($20 per person, per day) so that events are accessible to people of any financial background.

WordCamp data for 2015:

  • Total number of WordCamps: 89
  • Number of countries that held at least one WordCamp: 34
  • Total number of unique speakers: 1,677
  • Average number of speakers per WordCamp: 19
  • Total number of unique sessions: 2,135
  • Average number of sessions per WordCamp: 26
  • Total number of unique sponsors: 891
  • Average number of sponsors per WordCamp (includes global sponsors): 8
  • Total number of WordCamp tickets sold: 21,386
  • Average number of attendees per WordCamp: 246

WordCamps confirmed for 2016 can be found on the official schedule. Please note that the Global Community Sponsorship program does not include WordCamp Europe or WordCamp US, even though they’re listed on the official schedule.

What’s a meetup?

WordPress meetups are locally-organized user groups that get together for face-to-face events on a regular basis to discuss WordPress (commonly once a month). These events take many formats: presentations/lecture series, hackathons, social gatherings, workshops, coworking, running a WordPress help desk, contributor sprints/drives, and others. Groups hosted on meetup.com can join an official WordPress account and receive financial and organizational support from the WordPress Community team.

WordPress meetup data:

  • Total number of chapter account/official meetup groups: 197
  • Number of countries with at least one meetup/user group event: 38
  • Average number of groups per country: 4.69
  • Number of groups in the US: 97
  • Total number of group members: 73,183
  • Total number of meetup events: 2,016 (1,377 in the US)

How does event sponsorship help WordPress?

Companies that sponsor WordPress community events support the WordPress open source project by helping our volunteer-organized, local events provide free or low-cost access for attendees. WordPress community events strengthen, inspire, and connect the community that builds and maintains WordPress.

Why sponsor via this program rather than sponsoring individual events?

As the WordPress community continues to grow, many companies find they don’t have time to coordinate with multiple teams of volunteer event organizers. The WordPress Global Community Sponsorship Program ensures that your support reaches WordCamps and meetups quickly and provides stability to locally-organized events. WordPress global community sponsors have a single, centralized point of contact and are billed quarterly, saving companies time and trouble. Global community sponsors are emailed as soon as each WordCamp is added to the official schedule with all the vital details for the event, including contact info for the organizing team, anticipated number of attendees, mailing address for swag, and more.  Global sponsor company information is pre-loaded on every WordCamp website by WordCamp Central, so the local organizing team can publish the sponsor’s logo and company description with one simple click.

How much does global community sponsorship cost, and what are the benefits?

The following prices reflect sponsorship for the 2016 calendar year. In 2015, there were 53 WordCamps in the Western region and 34 WordCamps in the Eastern region. We anticipate a 10% increase in events this year, which should result in approximately 100 WordCamps worldwide in 2016.

Level Western (The Americas) Eastern (Europe, Asia Pacific, Africa)
Gold $160,000 $80,000
Silver $80,000 $50,000
Bronze $45,000 $35,000

Please note that this program excludes WordCamp US and WordCamp Europe.

Gold Community Sponsor benefits:

  1. Name, large logo, and company description/blurb on all WordCamp websites in the region
  2. Acknowledgment in one program-wide email to all WordPress chapter account meetups/user groups
  3. Coupon code in your sponsor description, posted to all meetups and WordCamps in the region (subject to approval)
  4. A blog post written by the sponsoring company posted to the WordCamp site (subject to approval)
  5. Table at WordCamps for meeting attendees if space is available*
  6. Acknowledgment on sponsor page on WordCamp Central, including coupon code
  7. Announcement as a Global Community Sponsor on the WordCamp Central blog
  8. Dedicated tweet announcing your sponsorship from the official Twitter account for each WordCamp you sponsor
  9. Inclusion in the Thank You To Our Sponsors blog post on each WordCamp you sponsor
  10. Three swag items added to each WordCamp’s “swag table,” if available (subject to approval)
  11. Four free tickets to each WordCamp you sponsor, reserved for your company representatives**

Silver Community Sponsor benefits:

  1. Name, medium logo, and company description/blurb on WordCamp websites
  2. Acknowledgment on sponsor page on WordCamp Central
  3. Announcement as a Global Community Sponsor on the WordCamp Central blog
  4. Acknowledgment in one program-wide email to all WordPress chapter account meetups/user groups
  5. Dedicated tweet announcing your sponsorship from the official Twitter account for each WordCamp you sponsor
  6. Inclusion in the Thank You To Our Sponsors blog post on each WordCamp you sponsor
  7. A sticker and postcard added to each WordCamp’s “swag table,” if available (subject to approval)
  8. Two free tickets to each WordCamp you sponsor, reserved for your company representatives**

Bronze Community Sponsor benefits:

  1. Name, small logo, and company description/blurb on WordCamp websites
  2. Acknowledgment on sponsor page on WordCamp Central
  3. Acknowledgment in a program-wide email to all WordPress chapter account meetups/user groups
  4. Announcement as a Global Community Sponsor on the WordCamp Central blog
  5. Inclusion in the Thank You To Our Sponsors blog post on each WordCamp you sponsor
  6. A sticker or postcard added to each WordCamp’s “swag table,” if available (subject to approval)

In the case of WordCamps, each global sponsorship level will be “merged” into the local WordCamp sponsorship levels, and global sponsors will receive the same benefits offered to local sponsors at the same level.

*Not all WordCamp venues will have space to provide tables to sponsors, but if the venue has enough space to accommodate sponsor tables, then community sponsors will be offered exhibition space. In your notification email, you’ll be informed whether or not the venue has exhibition space so you can request a table right away.

**Free, reserved tickets will return to the general ticket pool if they are not claimed one month before WordCamp. Tickets reserved for sponsors should not be used for ticket giveaways; these are only for your company representatives who wish to attend the event.

Different rules for sponsor materials:

For 2016, we’re creating a new corporate subsidiary of the WordPress Foundation to provide legal and financial support to official WordPress community events. This allows us to change some of the rules for event sponsors, since the tax laws for 501(c)3 organizations will no longer restrict us. Here’s how sponsorship rules will change for 2016:

2015 sponsorship rules 2016 sponsorship rules
1. Sponsors may provide:

  • The sponsor’s name and logo
  • Slogans that are an established part of the sponsor’s image
  • The sponsor’s brands and trade names
  • Sponsor contact information (such as telephone numbers, email addresses, and home page URLs)
  • Factual (value-neutral) displays of actual products
  • Displays or handout materials (such as brochures) with factual, value-neutral, non-comparative/non-qualitative descriptions or listings of products or services
1. Sponsor may provide:

  • The sponsor’s name and logo
  • Slogans that are an established part of the sponsor’s image
  • The sponsor’s brands and trade names
  • Sponsor contact information (such as telephone numbers, email addresses, and URLs)
  • Factual (value-neutral) displays of actual products
  • Displays or handout materials (such as brochures) with factual, non-comparative descriptions or listings of products or services
  • Price information, or other indications of savings or value, if factual and provable
  • Inducements to purchase or use the Sponsor’s products or services, for example by providing coupons or discount purchase codes (subject to approval)
  • Calls to action, such as “visit this site for details”, “call now for a special offer”, “join our league of savings”, etc.
2. Sponsors may not provide:

  • Promotional or marketing material containing qualitative, comparative, or non-neutral messages about the Sponsor, its products or services (such as “the first name in WordPress hosting”, “award-winning”, or “the best e-commerce plugin”)
  • Qualitative or comparative language, price information, or other indications of savings or value
  • Inducements to purchase or use the Sponsor’s products or services (for example, by handing out coupons or discount purchase codes)
  • Calls to action (“visit this site for details”, “call now for a special offer”, “go to”, “join our league of savings”, etc.)
  • Claims that WordPress Foundation, WordCamps, or WordCamp organizers endorse or favor a Sponsor or its products or services
2. Sponsors may not provide:

  • Promotional or marketing material containing comparative messages about the Sponsor, its products or services, such as “the first name in WordPress hosting”, “the easiest way to launch your site”, or “the best e-commerce plugin”
  • Claims that WordPress, WordPress Foundation, meetup organizers, WordCamps, or WordCamp organizers endorse or favor a Sponsor or its products or services (such as “certified WordPress training” or “WordCamp’s favorite plugin”)
3. Sponsors agree that the Foundation and WordCamp organizers have the right to request and review sponsor materials in advance of an event, to require changes to any materials in advance, and to require that any materials that do not meet the above expectations be taken down or that any practices that do not meet the above expectations be discontinued during a WordCamp or event. The above restrictions also apply to material placed on any self-serve swag tables reserved for sponsor use. 3. Sponsors agree that the WordPress Foundation, any subsidiary or related entity of the Foundation, and WordCamp organizers have the right to request and review sponsor materials in advance of an event, to require changes to any materials in advance, and to require that any materials that do not meet the above expectations be taken down or that any practices that do not meet the above expectations be discontinued during a WordCamp or event. The above restrictions also apply to material placed on any self-serve swag tables reserved for sponsor use.
4. All sponsors are expected to support the WordPress project and its principles, including:

  • No discrimination on the basis of economic or social status, race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, creed, religion, political belief, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, age, or disability.
  • No incitement to violence or promotion of hate
  • No spammers
  • No jerks
  • Respect the WordPress trademark.
  • Embrace the WordPress license; If distributing WordPress-derivative works (themes, plugins, WP distros), any person or business officially associated with WordCamp should give their users the same freedoms that WordPress itself provides: 100% GPL or compatible, the same guidelines we follow on WordPress.org.
  • Don’t promote companies or people that violate the trademark or distribute WordPress derivative works which aren’t 100% GPL compatible.
4. All sponsors are expected to support the WordPress project and its principles, including:

  • No discrimination on the basis of economic or social status, race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, creed, religion, political belief, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, age, or disability.
  • No incitement to violence or promotion of hate
  • No spammers
  • No jerks
  • Respect the WordPress trademark.
  • Embrace the WordPress license; If distributing WordPress-derivative works (themes, plugins, WP distros), any person or business officially associated with WordCamp should give their users the same freedoms that WordPress itself provides: 100% GPL or compatible, the same guidelines we follow on WordPress.org.
  • Don’t promote companies or people that violate the trademark or distribute WordPress derivative works which aren’t 100% GPL compatible.
5. Sponsorship is in no way connected to the opportunity to speak at an official WordPress event and does not alter the WordPress or WordCamp trademark usage policy found at http://wordpressfoundation.org/. WordPress Foundation reserves the right to modify the above requirements and expectations at any time by providing written notice to the sponsor. 5. Sponsorship is in no way connected to the opportunity to speak at an official WordPress event and does not alter the WordPress or WordCamp trademark usage policy found at http://wordpressfoundation.org/. The WordPress Foundation and any subsidiary or related entity of the Foundation reserve the right to modify the above requirements and expectations at any time by providing written notice to the sponsor.

How will sponsors be billed?

We’ll bill global sponsors on the first day of every quarter (January 1, April 1, July 1, and October 1), and all invoices will be due net 30. Sponsors may not be added to the event program until payment has been received.

How do I sign up?

For more information on supporting WordPress events through the WordPress Global Community Sponsorship Program, email support@wordcamp.org. We look forward to another amazing year of WordPress community events, and we hope you’ll join us!