It’s been a fantastic ride so far, full of events, discussions, opportunities and lessons learned.
The WordCamp trend
2015 saw the first WordCamp US and the third WordCamp Europe. More than 2000 people are expected at the next WordCamp Europe in Vienna (June 24–26, 2016). Whilst numbers like that seem to suggest that the trend is going towards big conferences, I strongly believe that such massive events wouldn’t be possible if there weren’t so many local / smaller communities keeping the flame alive.
In fact, in 2015 WordCamps were held in 34 different countries, with a huge jump in WordCamps held in Europe (from 17 in 2014 to 29 in 2015).
On the other hand, Italy’s last WordCamp was in 2013. That’s right: while the WordCamp trend was evident all over Europe, Italy was playing the black sheep role.
As an Italian living abroad and travelling frequently to WordCamps, seeing that there was no WordCamp held in Italy was somehow a pain to me. How do we fix this? was what I asked myself.
The importance of a communication hub
Italians love WordPress and adopted it from the very early days. WordPress meetups were happening in Italy well before the creation of Italia WP Community, although only in big cities and with no regularity. The lack of a central hub for meetup organisers and attendees was one of the major issues: how is a community of people supposed to help each other and grow without a common space?
That’s what Francesco and I figured out. Following the UK example (a Slack team for the whole UK, with mutual support channels, meetup channels, open channels for planning WordCamps, etc.), we decided that it was time for Italy too to have a dedicated Slack team.
Why Slack? Because it’s the platform where the greater WordPress community has its team, and where most WordPress and tech companies these days are communicating. Global WP team, local WP team, your company, in the same environment. Not bad, huh?
Some raw data
These are only some of the fantastic things the Italian WordPress community has achieved over the last year:
- 354 members.
- 1 standalone Contributor Day in Milan.
- 2 WordCamps (one in Turin, last April, the other one’s in Milan, currently planning).
- 10 (give or take) active members on the support forum, helping out Italian-speaking WordPress users.
- An incredibly well organised and inclusive structure for translators.
- A number of meetups across the country that is almost impossible to determine.
- Active contributors in other areas (WordPress.tv, accessibility, etc.).
- An incredible number of contributors who are showing leadership, passion, and willing to help.
Italia WP Community in 2016/17
I’m really excited about the upcoming 12 months. There’s a lot of new people to meet, knowledge to share, events to attend, connections to build, and most importantly, there’s a community that has to grow alongside the global WordPress community and the WordPress project itself.
There is no community I’d rather be a part of, other than this one.
Happy birthday (or buon compleanno, as we say in Italian), Italia WP Community!
If you use WordPress and want to be part of the Italian WordPress community, please feel free to join the Italia WP Community Slack team. It’s a great way to learn how to contribute to WordPress, network, hang out with like-minded people, make new friends, and ultimately give back to the global WordPress open source project. Whether you are a seasoned developer, a blogger, or a 14yo trying to code up your first theme, everyone is welcome to come and help—regardless their skills, experience, etc. Don’t let your imposter syndrome get in the way of joining the community and becoming an active contributor.
Se usi WordPress e vuoi far parte della comunità italiana di WordPress, iscriviti a Italia WP Community. È il modo migliore per imparare a contribuire a WordPress, fare networking, conoscere persone come te, stringere nuove amicizie, e ridare a WordPress anche solo un po’ di quanto WordPress—piattaforma gratuita e senza prezzo per le sue infinite possibilità—ti ha permesso di realizzare. Italia WP Community è una comunità per tutti: sviluppi siti, temi, plugin? Hai un blog? Hai 14 anni e stai imparando a realizzare il tuo primo tema? Unisciti a noi. Non lasciare che la tua sindrome dell’impostore ti impedisca di farlo.