It’s a New Year so we thought the longer break between meetups was a great opportunity to tackle something that has been on our TODO list for far too long: setup a website for the User Group.
We’ve been Meetup.com-only since Rob created the group and the last few years has shown how limited that really is; there’s no where to host content that doesn’t fit their mould, they want to charge you for showing a sponsor’s logo and the only way to contact your members is via email.
And so we present our new website! It doesn’t replace Meetup.com in any way; you can RSVP to events over there, but it’s a more convenient way to bring together the various aspects of the group and its content.
This also gives us a way to communicate with you that doesn’t rely on the persistence of people’s inboxes or the pervasiveness of Meetup comments! You can expect to see follow up posts from events collecting presenter slides and photos for easy reference as an example, and that’s just the start.
You may have noticed if you’re active on Slack or follow us on Twitter, but late last year we started live streaming the events. We also clean up the videos and publish them on our YouTube channel. You’ll see a WATCH LIVE button front and centre in the website whenever the stream is active, and general links to the videos and stream in the top menu. We try to edit the presentations in the days following an event, but my 2013-era MBP struggles at the best of time, so delays may occur.
We’ll continue to use Meetup.com for our event management (plus moving away is basically impossible), but thanks to the power of WordPress plugins and my rusty PHP skills you can still get information on the next event from within the website and in a nicer format too!
Something that has also been on our list for a long time is publishing a Code of Conduct. While there generally haven’t been many issues, it is an important part of running a socially responsible user group: there are generally accepted standards of behaviour, and steps for reporting and remediation incidents where those standards have not been honoured.
User Group events take a lot of time, energy and sometimes chunks of money to run. We often get asked about ways people can help out, typically with presentations or sponsorship. There is a lot of information in this over here, or you can jump into #volunteers on Slack.
There is also a bit of info about the group as a whole for new members, and info on how to contact the organisers.
We hope you find it useful (and shiny), and if you have any feedback hit up one of the organisers on Twitter or Slack.
Until next time!