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How can local meetup groups be involved?
Ideas for driving engagement both directions
Covid put the brakes on a lot of things around the world, the country and of course upstate South Carolina. In addition to interfering with this conference, numerous local meetup groups have reported similar issues with getting things moving again.
The energy around restarting the Carolina Code Conference has been excellent so far, but I’m curious if there’s a way that energy can help get the local meetups moving again as well?
I don’t have a solution, only ideas and I’m looking for more so I’d like to go ahead and sound out a little bit of what I’m thinking so far to collect feedback. Feel free to comment here or come chat it up in the Hack Greenville Slack, that you should be joining if you’re not already there.
Including Meetups in Presenter Selection
As a polyglot conference, Carolina Code Conference is in an ideal position to include diverse technical talks in a single event and that works well for an area with a similarly diverse set of tech meetups. Off the top of my head I know of Upstate PHP, Upstate Elixir, Upstate Ruby, Upstate Carolina Linux User Group, Greenville Python Meetup, Women Who Code, DEFCON 864, Upstate DevOps and many more.
Is there a way that each meetup group could nominate speakers? I don’t want to discourage individual submissions but I’d like to give some weight to local meetups during the selection process for a few reasons.
Encourage participation in local meetups as a path to talk selection. Having spoken at several myself over the years, it can be tough for organizers to find people every month so anything that encourages more speaking volunteers should be a win.
Have support in the audience for a speaker representing the meetup group. I can’t think of many speakers that wouldn’t enjoy their own cheering section.
Allowing each meetup group to be promoted briefly at the beginning of the talk and potentially allowing the meetup organizer to introduce their presenter. This could provide some more face time and exposure for each meetup to share some pictures, talk about where they meet and give people an idea of what’s been talked about over the last year. Providing that forum could help to promote further engagement from attendees who never knew these meetups existed.
Selecting speakers is a tough job. Having meetups as a recommendation channel would spread some of the load and responsibility for those selections.
I don’t know what something like that would look like or exactly how it could work, but I’m curious to figure out a good approach so any ideas would be welcome.
This doesn’t need to be limited to meetups either. We could have any organization, code schools, universities represented by students, group presentations, sponsoring companies or anything else that makes sense.
What I do know is that there are a number of people who have made and continue the upstate tech community better. Their work needs to be showcased.
Ultimately the goal of this conference is to provide a forum to make us all better through networking, sharing and promoting each other.
What suggestions do you have?