Last year’s Stack Overflow Meetups were a success, with over 2000 people participating around the world. We’re happy to announce that the Second Annual Stack Overflow Meetup Day is April 28, 2012.
Because the Stack Exchange network grew so much over 2011, we’ve decided our Meetup day should grow, too. This year we’re calling on every hacker, programmer, or designer in the Stack Exchange tech community to meet up with other users, say hello, and maybe learn something. Whether you’re a member of Stack Overflow, Server Fault, Super User, Programmers, Ask Ubuntu, Game Development, or any other technology-themed Stack Exchange site, we want you to be a part of this event.*
Why does this event exist?
Even though we constantly say that Stack Exchange is not a social network, you (the community) share your knowledge and help our sites grow. The community is important, and since we don’t have friends lists or private messaging, we want to give the community a chance to get to know each other. But we need your help.
How do I get involved?
Just like last year, we’re using Meetup.com to make it easy for users to organize a local face-to-face event - or to join one that someone else has planned. Visit meetup.com/stackoverflow to find your local Stack Overflow MeetUp group. If there is no group in your area, start one! As other people join, you can choose a venue (library, community center, restaurant, etc.) for the event. Those interested in playing a little bit larger role can volunteer to be planners.
If there was a meetup in your community last year, it will be shown in the list on meetup.com/stackoverflow. An event has automatically been created for this year; all you need to do is RVSP and suggest a location.
If you search for your city (or a city near you) and don’t see it in the results list, add a new community!
What should my event look like?
Your event can take whatever shape suits your local community. Feeling generous? Plan group volunteering activities. Have a great open-source project you’ve been working on? Present it! Know someone who loves to talk programming in front of crowds? Ask them to guest speak! Or, plan an Ignite-style event where anyone can present an idea in five minutes or less. The options are endless.
To help you get started planning an event, take a look at what some of our users did last year or hop over to the Worldwide Meetup chat room to trade ideas and stories with other Meetup planners.********
What if I’m busy on April 28th?
If you find that you and all the other Stack Exchange techies in your area can’t get together on April 28th, that’s okay! We don’t want you to miss out on the fun, so just pick any other day around the 28th - we don’t mind if people celebrate Stack Overflow for a week rather than a day.
How can I help get the word out?
Join your local community (or create a new community location) on meetup.com/stackoverflow. Once you’re a member, help us get the rest of the Stack Exchange tech community involved! Use your existing online activity to share details about this event:
Use the hashtag #SOMeetup on Google Plus, Twitter, Flickr and YouTube when posting about Stack Overflow Meetups
Post a link to your local Meetup page on Google Plus, Facebook, and Twitter, email the page to your friends, promote in blog posts, on HN, etc
Use the custom Stack Overflow Meetup widgets
Get in touch with other existing tech Meetup groups in your area and see if there are Stack Exchange users among them
**How will Stack Exchange help?
We’re dedicated to the success of these Meetups just as much as you are. We’ll be posting more tips here on our blog to make sure you’re well-prepared to host an awesome event. We’ll put ads on our network to help spread the word, and we’ll share event details via our own social media platforms. We’ll send door prizes to the groups that build up the biggest following leading up to the Meetup Day. We’ll collect your stories, tweets, and photos to share on our blog after the event.
- For those of you who aren’t programmers, hackers or designers - fear not! We haven’t forgotten you; stay tuned for news of a possible network-wide event later this year.