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Going Backstage on Community Trends: Bug or Feature?

B92fd0f4dfb7ed14c1441e4f4cf56542?s=47 Jenny Wong
February 15, 2018

Going Backstage on Community Trends: Bug or Feature?

Over the years, the PHP community has enjoyed an increase in events. This has given us more choice than ever over what we attend. At the same time, some of our favourite events have come to a close.

As the community recalibrates, needs have changed and events are repeatedly being challenged. Organisers are burdened with finding the solutions, but is there a way for us all to help?

With change comes an opportunity for growth. This is our chance to grow richer and stronger as a community.

B92fd0f4dfb7ed14c1441e4f4cf56542?s=128

Jenny Wong

February 15, 2018
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  1. Going Backstage on Community Trends Bug or Feature? Jenny Wong

    @miss_jwo
  2. HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE AT THEIR FIRST PHP CONFERENCE?

  3. HOW MANY PEOPLE ATTEND A LOCAL PHP USER GROUP?

  4. 26 DIFFERENT USER GROUPS

  5. 2004

  6. 2004

  7. 2005

  8. 2008

  9. 2009

  10. 2010

  11. 2011

  12. 2012

  13. 2013

  14. 2014

  15. 2015

  16. 2016

  17. 2017

  18. 2018

  19. Volunteers

  20. A method of contribution

  21. The way PHP is built

  22. The way frameworks, libraries & languages are built

  23. Day jobs

  24. JavaScript, Front End, Big Data, Operations, Servers, InfoSec, Haskell, Databases,

    Python, Rust, Rails, Golang…
  25. Why do we choose to go to our local PHP

    user group?
  26. This group popped up on Meetup.com so I thought I

    would come along. I learnt things at the meetup that I instantly improved my job. Anonymous
  27. Backstage at a User group

  28. ORGANISERS MONTHLY TO-DO LIST ▸ Find people who are interested

    attending ▸ Find a venue ▸ Work out a date & time ▸ Find speakers ▸ Tell people about the event:
 meetup.com / Twitter / Facebook / Slack etc ▸ Find sponsors to cover costs ▸ Create slides ▸ Host the event ▸ Clean up after the event ▸ Contact & thank people for coming ▸ Repeat
  29. None
  30. FINANCIAL COST OF A USER GROUP ▸ meetup.com ▸ Domain

    registration ▸ Venue hire ▸ Hosting costs ▸ Equipment ▸ Food ▸ Drinks
  31. FINANCIAL COST OF A USER GROUP - £456.25 A MONTH

    ▸ meetup.com ▸ Domain registration ▸ Venue hire ▸ Hosting costs ▸ Equipment ▸ Food ▸ Drinks £11 a month £15 annually £200 a month £3 a month £41 one off £100 a month £100 a month
  32. Why Bother?

  33. Why do you organise your event?

  34. I went to this event as an attendee and gained

    a lot. Organising the event allows me to pay this forward whilst still providing great networking for me. Lee Stone PHP South West
  35. Wanted to meet new people when moving to the city

    and enjoy talking about tech. Danny Wilson, Aberdeen PHP
  36. Initially? Résumé fodder. Later? Feeling of contribution. Currently? Obligation. Anonymous

  37. Issues

  38. Bug or Feature

  39. Priorities

  40. Hiatus

  41. MOST COMMON REASONS FOR THE BREAK ▸ Lack of speakers

    ▸ Organiser was unavailable / no one else offered to host ▸ Lack of venue
  42. REASONS THAT GROUPS THAT DISBANDED ▸ Organisers got too busy

    ▸ No support ▸ Moved away from the area
  43. Struggles ▸ Attendees ▸ Speakers ▸ Diversity ▸ Sponsors ▸

    Marketing ▸ Venue ▸ Session Ideas ▸ Time ▸ Number of organisers
  44. How many people here fear speaking in front of a

    group?
  45. A lot of tech focused people don't like to speak

    infront of crowds. Also lack of time from an organisational point of view, we can only spare so much personal time to look for speakers. Nick Edwards, Glasgow PHP
  46. I’ve been going to user groups and giving talks so

    that I can improve my confidence in speaking in groups both in public and at work. It has resulted me being better at my job. Matt Brunt
  47. I’ve been going to user groups and giving talks so

    that I can improve my confidence in speaking in groups both in public and at work. It has resulted me being better at my job. Matt Brunt
  48. Do you know someone who has a interesting story to

    share?
  49. Introduce them to organisers!

  50. Venues are always tricky to sort out, commercial venues often

    let us use a venue for free initially but then commercial bookings soon push the meetup out. Simon Jones, PHP Cambridge
  51. What do you wish people knew about event organising?

  52. Finding the right theme/subject/talk for the audience is never easy

    and at times finding speakers proves a challenge too. Antonis Pavlakis, PHP MiNDS
  53. That it’s a fair bit of hassle and you don’t

    get much thanks Andy, PHP Essex
  54. What would make the organising easier?

  55. More Help. People stepping up as speakers and co- organizers.

    Boyan Yordanov, PHP Varna
  56. How many of us work in a company that sponsors

    their local meetup?
  57. We could do with more sponsors to fund certain things.

    Currently we are splitting some payments between ourselves as organisers to keep things going. Ben Plummer, PHP Warwickshire
  58. How many of us contribute?

  59. People contributing to the user group, Similar to open source,

    an user group lives by contributors, which can be developers or companies. Anonymous
  60. Things that make a difference

  61. Can you recall a moment where someone has helped you

    before/at/ during an event and made it easier for yourself? What happened?
  62. An attendee, turned co-organiser started by helping informally. They helped

    a lot in discussion sessions, engaging in conversations which helped break the silence without taking over. Rowan Collins, BrightonPHP
  63. Help set up the event?

  64. Having additional people to handle the drinks (putting them in

    the fridge/helping set up the tables etc) Craig Willis, PHP London
  65. Help clean up?

  66. People who help clean up are pretty cool. Frederick Vanbrabant,

    PHP Antwerp
  67. Small acts can have a BIG effect

  68. Greeter

  69. The Greeter’s role is to welcome everyone to the club

    meeting, particularly visitors and people who are new to Toastmasters. Making everyone feel welcome at our club is important, as this may be the start of their Toastmasters journey. toastmasterclub.org/portal.php?page=2210
  70. The Greeter’s role is to welcome everyone to the club

    meeting, particularly visitors and people who are new to Toastmasters. Making everyone feel welcome at our club is important, as this may be the start of their Toastmasters journey. toastmasterclub.org/portal.php?page=2210
  71. Hi, my name is <?php echo $name; ?> You

  72. Start a conversation

  73. CONVERSATION STARTERS ▸ Have you travelled far? ▸ What kind

    of work do you do with PHP? ▸ What session are you planning? ▸ Been to any interesting sessions? ▸ What did you think of the topic? ▸ How did you get started in our industry?
  74. Pac-Man Rule

  75. When standing as a group of people, always leave room

    for 1 person to join your group. Eric Holscher ericholscher.com/blog/2017/aug/2/pacman-rule-conferences/
  76. Stand like Pac-Man

  77. Retweet Share the event

  78. Tweet that you are going Are you going?

  79. Share ideas & feedback

  80. SMALL WAYS TO HELP OUT ▸ Be a greeter ▸

    Start a conversation ▸ Pac-man Rule ▸ Get a glass of water for the speaker & organisers ▸ Digitalise hand-written notes ▸ Do a session at your local user group ▸ Tweet that you are going ▸ Share ideas & feedback
  81. Have Fun

  82. Have fun PHP UK!