This post presents a list of what WordCamp attendees say makes WordCamp events great!
If you’re considering going to a WordCamp, look over the list and see if anything there seems like a good reason for you to become a WordCamp attendee.
Top Things That Make WordCamp Great
- Starting or strengthening relationships, aka meeting cool new like-minded people.
- Learning how to do more things and make better sites with WordPress.
- The experience and memories = Awesome. Fun. Amazing. Fantastic. Community-organized. Informal. Glorious. Life-changing.
- Learning more about blogging and about website content.
- Increasing revenue as direct or indirect result of WordCamp (if you use WordPress to make money).
- Beginning new projects or ventures with people met at WordCamp.
- Hearing incredible stories that inspire you to do more (like that of a 22 year old core committer to WordPress who started blogging at 12 years old).
- Getting t-shirts, stickers, pens, and other physical reminders of the good time.
- Helping organize or run WordCamp (or being talked into helping on a future WordCamp).
The above list is a view from the outside. I haven’t been to a WordCamp yet, although I worked on organizing one and was going to attend as a volunteer, but a new job prevented me from attending. So this list isn’t based on first-hand knowledge. However, I’ve been to enough similar events, like BarCamps and DrupalCamp, to feel confident that each and every one of the above reasons to attend WordCamp is valid and experienced by just about everyone who goes.
Personal Accounts From WordCamp Attendees
Here are a few excerpts from posts written after the person went to a WordCamp.
What an amazing experience the last few days have been. We laughed, we cried, we even had a few spirited debates, and my head is spinning from three days of non-stop WordPress learning and networking…I plan on writing several posts about all of the things I learned at WordCamp, instead of cramming them into just one post. For now, suffice it to say that this has been one of the best experiences on my professional life.
This past weekend, I – along with 700ish other participants – attended Atlanta’s Wordcamp…It was glorious, and honestly a little life-changing, and it was only my first time attending. As such, I wanted to take a little time to share some of the things I learned that will directly affect me professionally moving forward.
WordCamps have support areas known as Happiness bars. Anyone can go here to get help and support on WordPress. At WordCamp Orlando, I sat in the bar and helped a woman understand how to use a WordPress site that had been dumped on her. Between my help and the help of several others, she felt like she had received thousands of dollars worth of support.
Well, I was pleasantly surprised both by the quality of the content and the organizational skills of volunteer coordinators. At the end of each day, I left with brain drain from trying to absorb way too much information, way too fast, in a condensed time frame. That was one of this conference’s challenges and my negatives, cramming way too much information into a short amount of time, thinking the audience would retain that information. It all became very overwhelming and will take me months to digest and discern what applies to my situation now.
If you use WordPress, or are considering using it, I recommend you go to WordCamp Central to find an upcoming WordCamp near you. Check your schedule, and if it’s open for that WordCamp, add it to your calendar and go to the event site to Register! 🙂