WordPress Community Summit 2017 Set for June 13-14 in Paris

WordPress contributor teams are getting ready for the next Community Summit, which will be held in Paris leading up to WordCamp Europe on June 13-14. This is the first time the event will be held outside the United States, making it more accessible to European community members who may have been unable to attend previous summits.

The summit provides an opportunity for those who contribute to WordPress and its surrounding community to tackle difficult topics that require in-person discussion or collaboration. This year the organizing team is trying a new selection process for attendees. Instead of the previous invitation-only system, contributor teams are identifying the challenging issues they want to discuss and then nominating attendees who will represent diverse viewpoints on these particular topics.

For example, a few proposed topics for the core team include discussions about the future of JavaScript in core, how to attract more JavaScript-first developers to build on WordPress, and technology version support policies (PHP, MySQL, browsers, etc.) Theme Review Team contributors have proposed discussion on how to allow for more experimentation and ways to improve the leadership of the team and the theme author and reviewer experiences.

Each of the 16 contributor teams tagged in the announcement has until March 3rd to create a list of topics and representatives, including contributors who are willing to help organize the event. An application form is open for those who represent other interests within the WordPress community but are not part of one of the contributor teams. The summit will be limited to 180 attendees (the capacity for the venue).

The call for sponsors will be published next week, but promotional activities will not be incorporated into the event. The organizing team is also working on finding sponsors to cover travel expenses for contributors who have financial barriers to attending.

“The idea of this event sponsorship is about supporting the project and the community,” summit organizer Rocio Valdivia said. “So, there aren’t levels of exposure associated with each price level other than the label that will show up in the make/summit p2 page for it and on the sidebar. We’ll add links to their sites, logos, and a huge thanks at event to all sponsors, regardless how much they’ve sponsored. The sponsorship levels are about the desire and financial ability of the companies to contribute to the summit, not about a marketing thing.”

The summit is closed to the public and the press, but there is a decent level of transparency around the topics attendees plan to discuss if you peruse the make.wordpress.org blogs. If contributor teams publish notes from the discussions as they have in previous years, the wider community will be able to follow along to see if the summit precipitates meaningful progress for the project.

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