WordCamp London 2017 was held at London Metropolitan University on 17 – 19th March 2017. Friday 17th March was the Contributors day where a community of WordPress users came together, shared knowledge, learned from others and contributed to the WordPress project.
Saturday and Sunday was the actual conference with a full-on schedule of speakers to keep us up to date with WordPress, including various brand sponsors and their friendly reps; from casual WordPress users and designers to core web developers in attendance, sharing their ideas in a relaxed and friendly environment.
I came to know about Wordcamp via the WordPress London meetup group last year 2016. It just so happened that when I attended the meetup, one of the WordCamp event organisers was there so I decided to put my name down to volunteer for the event.
On my first contributor day (2016) I didn’t know what to expect. I was fairly new to WordPress then, a bit nervous and uncertain as to whether I’d be able to contribute at all to the event but was glad to learn that there were no auditions to take part so I joined the Theme Review team. It took me a while to understand the process but in the end, I successfully managed to review just one theme. The team leader was ever so helpful, friendly and patient with me.
This year (2017) was my second Wordcamp and Contributors day. Knowing what to expect this time around I was more relaxed and joined the Polyglots team. I was fascinated and wowed to learn that ‘Tagalog’ is already one of the languages that existed in WordPress, even ‘Iloko’ but I couldn’t find ‘Kapampagan’ – just as well as this could be a little tricky for me to translate even though it’s my native dialect in the Philippines. Although a little slow in the beginning, I was more productive at this event and did about 75 string translations in Tagalog. As a group we did over 600 translations in different localization that day and I was really pleased to be part of it.
Note: Contributor day photos courtesy of Pradeep Singh
2016 – I was on volunteer duty for 2 days but had a few slots free so I managed to see a number of speaker sessions that weekend. I met a fellow Filipina who informed me about the Tagalog translation, hence I made sure I joined the team to contribute the following year. I even had the privilege of having a photo taken with the Wapuu – the WordPress mascot. There was an after party, retro games, dinner and free drinks
2017 – Where was Wapuu this year? I missed him – he was probably on holiday (lucky for some!) but there were plenty of his stickers this year though. I was one of the volunteers at registration but didn’t come across any pinoy (Filipino) this year. If any of you are going next year, do say hello.
I also met some familiar faces, as well as new friendly faces this year.
One of the freebies I received last year was a one year’s free hosting from Siteground. I took advantage of trying their ‘GoGeek’ plan and migrated a number of my websites to test it. I was really impressed with their fast online chat support assistance, they seemed really helpful, enthusiastic, knowledgeable and competent. The hosting seemed reliable, fast and secure so I decided to renew it this year but downgraded to ‘GrowBig’. It wasn’t quite as straight forward as I thought because I didn’t realise that downgrading meant my sites would be moved to different servers, so I encountered a bit of a technical issue, i.e. different named DNS, SMTP pointers. Luckily, Siteground representatives were onsite at Wordcamp – Anton was very helpful in sorting out my mail issue so I was really pleased that my technical issues were resolved in less than 24 hours. Very good customer service and quality of support is superb. I’m a happy customer.
Due to prior commitment, I couldn’t make it to the after party this year, I heard it went really well and everyone was as happy as ever.
Will I attend Wordcamp again? Definitely! I hope to be there again next year. I would like to give a huge thank you to the talented organisers for making this event another success. WordCamp was one of the best conferences I’ve ever attended, it was very well organised, there were friendly and helpful volunteers, lots of swag giveaways, inclusive meals, and there was even a crèche provision for people with children. Excellent value and amazing event.
I highly recommend any WordPress users that have never been to any Wordcamp event to attend. Don’t miss out, it’s worth it.