WordCamp is a conference focused on WordPress. In fact, WordCamps are scheduled weekly in cities around the world to hopefully reach as many WordPress users as possible.
For those who are new to WordPress, and haven’t built a website, or perhaps they have a static site, and need a better solution, WordCamps offer the opportunity to learn if WordPress is a good solution for them.
Attendees can sit in on presentations that have topics that range from basic user to power user, social media, business, designer, and developer. Some WordCamps offer a question booth or room, also known as the Happiness Bar, so attendees can ask volunteers about topics. Some of those topics can be:
- Choosing the right theme
- Choosing the right plugin
- Setting up a new WordPress install
- Troubleshooting WordPress
- Search engine optimization advice
- Sharing ideas on plugin development
- Blog advice
- Design advice
- Social media advice
… and much more!!!
WordCamp is non-profit, and inexpensive. For a 1 day event, a ticket can be $20! Some 2-day events can be $30 to $40! The reason why tickets are so cheap is because the conference is usually funded by businesses that have WordPress related services. These businesses have also given back to the community and are happy to see the WordPress community thrive. It’s also an opportunity for them to connect with WordPress users in order to improve their products.
Aside from getting to learn more about WordPress, attendees can network in person. For some, it might even mean meeting their favorite blogger or business!
Each WordCamp is different in its own way and reflects it’s community. For example, maybe WordCamp Kansas City might be more interested in developer topics one year, and WordCamp St. Louis might be more user related. Their interests will reflect in their chosen topics for the event.
Each speaker that is chosen has to meet requirements laid out by WordCamp Central in order for the event to stay in the best interest of the WordPress community. Also, WordCamps try to pick from within their own community. Of course, they do pick a few WordPress “rockstars”, but they generally look within the community first to try to make it fair and let local talent shine. All sp
WordCamps are run by a team of volunteers dedicated to giving back to their community. They spend countless hours communicating and arranging the event so that when the actual WordCamp happens in their city, it runs well. They make no money on this. In fact, the organization team and speakers are all volunteers. No money is paid to any of them, because, again, WordCamps are non-profit.
Attendees usually are treated to a breakfast or lunch (in some cases both), and some freebies (or swag) from WordPress companies (usually the sponsors). Also, the WordCamp organization team usually puts together an after party to allow a fun setting for attendees to network, and to enjoy the hosting city.
According to WordCamp Central, there have been 346 WordCamps in 172 cities as of December 2014. Those 172 cities were in 48 countries and in 6 continents! The schedule for upcoming WordCamps is always changing and updating.
Have you been to a WordCamp? If so, what is your favorite WordCamp experience?