Write the Docs Meetup Quorum

The Quorum program brings together various local [Write the Docs](https://www.writethedocs.org/) meetup chapters in compatible time zones to provide quarterly super meetups over Zoom throughout the year. These quarterly virtual meetups can serve one or more time zones. Virtual events increase community participation and offer more opportunities for sharing knowledge. Virtual Meetup Quorums have high value in geographies where there isn’t a tech epicenter.

As always, ask questions on the [Write the Docs Slack workspace](https://www.writethedocs.org/slack/) any time.

## Meetup links

A separate parent Meetup exists for each quorum program. Local chapter organizers announce upcoming events and direct their members to join the parent Meetup to RSVP for events.

## Meetup schedules

Meetups are held quarterly. On a rotating basis, a different meetup is responsible for the quarterly super meetup.

If it is safe to do so (for example, coronavirus or other health risks), individual chapters can still meet in person during the off months for social networking or for their own local educational presentation events. Individual chapters are also welcome to organize in-person events to view the super meetups.

As a general rule, Quorum meetup events occur on a dependable cadence. For example, during the 3rd week of the month, with the 4th week acting as a backup if needed. Monday through Thursday are acceptable days of the week for presentations. The off months for each quarter can act as a backup for meetings if needed. Conduct a planning meeting the month before each meetup to plan the logistics for the upcoming quarter.

In 2021, U.S. East Coast and Central meetups the first month of the quarter and U.S. West Coast and Mountain occurred in the second month of the quarter. Determine appropriate Virtual Quorum Meetups times and events that work for your geography.

Plan and publish a calendar each year, like:

### East Coast U.S. calendar for 2022

Month | Event |
—— | —————————– |
Jan | Off (no meetings) |
Feb | East Coast Quorum meetup |
Mar | Off (no meetings) |
Apr | East Coast Quorum meetup |
May | WTD Portland conference |
June | Off (no meetings) |
July | Off (no meetings) |
Aug | East Coast Quorum meetup |
Sept | Off (no meetings) |
Oct | Off (no meetings) |
Nov | East Coast Quorum meetup |
Dec | Off (no meetings) |

### West Coast U.S. calendar for 2022

Month | Event |
—— | —————————– |
Jan | West Coast Quorum meetup |
Feb | Off (no meetings) |
Mar | West Coast Quorum meetup |
Apr | Off (no meetings) |
May | WTD Portland conference |
June | West Coast Quorum meetup |
July | Off (no meetings) |
Aug | Off (no meetings) |
Sept | West Coast Quorum meetup |
Oct | Off (no meetings) |
Nov | Off (no meetings) |
Dec | West Coast Quorum meetup |

## Meeting agenda and times

Meetings last an hour and follow this agenda and time structure. For example, for an event that starts at 7:00:

  • 7:00 to 7:10 - Icebreakers and announcements - For the first 10 minutes, remote attendees can join and participate in icebreaker activities. Then, the emcee makes announcements and introduces the speaker.
  • 7:15 to 8:00 - Presentation and Q&A - The speaker has about 30-45 minutes for their presentation that includes the Q&A portion. The Q&A can expand to fill the time if the presentation is short.
  • 7:45 to 8:30 - Breakout rooms by meetup - Attendance at this portion of the meetup is optional. We’ll use Zoom breakout rooms to have people meet with their individual meetup organizers to say hi to other people in their meetup. Organizers can use that time to talk about job openings, talk about future meetups, and socialize.

< !— See [Meeting agenda (detailed)](meeting-agenda-detailed.md) more detailed meeting instructions. See also: [Emcee script](emcee-script.md).–>

## Quorum meetup event publicity

Quorum events are created on the parent Quorum meetup and then the local meetups publish an announcement that tells their members about that event. These announcements encourage their local members to register at the Quorum Meetup event. Local meetups do not publish their own version of the event.

We want to drive traffic from local meetups to Quorum and also drive traffic back to the local meetups. Traffic is hopefully driven back to local meetups by:

  • Hosting breakout rooms at the end of the Quorum meetups in which local meetup leaders can connect in smaller groups with people who came to the Quorum meetup that are from a common area.
  • Post links to each of the sponsoring local meetup groups in the Quorum meetup event details.

<!— See [Quorum meetup publicity (detailed)](meetup-publicity-detailed.md) for more information about publicity. –>

## Advantages of participating

If you are a local WTD meetup organizer, participating in WTD Quorum has many potential advantages:

  • Sharing the workload - Volunteering as a WTD meetup organizer can involve a lot of work depending on how much support you have from the members and other organizers in your chapter. Quorum super meetups take some of the pressure off by reducing the number of meetups you have to coordinate on your own.
  • Attracting high quality speakers - Because remote attendance increases audience sizes, high quality speakers can be better guaranteed to have a sizable and engaged audience. Remote meetups can also attract high quality speakers by allowing them to present from their preferred location, reducing the burden on their time.
  • Expanding access to high quality content - Some meetups have a greater pool of potential high quality presenters to draw on simply because of geographic density. Remote meetups allow WTD members from less dense geographic regions to have access to good content without needing to attend in person.
  • Reducing the need for venues or sponsors - In-person meetings usually need a venue or sponsor to be successful. Coordinating sponsors and venues is frequently challenging for meetup organizers. Remote meetups don’t have these needs.

## Responsibilities of participating meetups

Participating local meetup organizers agree to:

  • Find a speaker for one approximately one event on a rotating basis.
  • Either emcee or find an emcee for their event.
  • Help promote each regional event with their meetup members–not just the month that they arranged the speaker.
  • Attend as many regional super meetups for your region as possible.
  • (Optional): It helps to have 1-2 core team members who can assist in coordinating the Zoom calls and communicating with meetup organizers.

<!— For more information and tips for organizing a successful meetup when it’s your turn, see [Organizing a meetup](meetup-organizing.md). –>

<!— When you are the Zoom coordinator for the event, see the [Zoom coordinator guide](zoom-coordinator-guide).–>

## How to participate in Quorum

We can launch a new quorum in a time zone or area if we have at least 4 or more local meetups in a given geography that are interested in participating.

To join the discussion, join the [Write the Docs Slack](https://www.writethedocs.org/slack/) and add yourself to the #meetup-organizers-quorum.

We also use the [wtd-quorum on groups.io](https://groups.io/g/wtd-quorum) mailing list. The goal is to cross-post from Slack to the mailing list for archiving purposes.

## Will Quorum meetups continue after in-person events resume?

Yes! The long-term plan is that time-zone compatible Quorum events become a permanent part of Write the Docs.

Appreciation and thanks to Alyssa Rock @barbaricyawps for leading the charge in community organizing to champion the pilot tests for regional virtual super meetups. Hat tip to the communities who participated in the successful test and implementation of the virtual Quorum meetups.

U.S. East Coast and Central meetups:

U.S. West Coast, Mountain, and Australian meetups: