In this new edition of our blog series on WordPress communities, we are really happy to interview Taeke Reijenga from WordPress Rotterdam.
WordCamp Rotterdam 2019 is coming up on on April 12th and Weglot is a proud sponsor of the event.
Who is the Rotterdam WordPress community?
I would say the Rotterdam WordPress community is pretty big. The first WordPress Meetup was organised in early 2014. Today the WordPress Meetup Rotterdam has about 800 members. On average about 50 people join a meetup.
After a very successful WordCamp last year, we are now organising the second edition. We will again aim to host 200 WordPress enthusiasts in Blue City, a former tropical swimming paradise that has now been turned into an example of the so called circular economy. With this year edition, we’ll host the first 24H WordCamp by combining a regular WordCamp program with a overnight do_action hackaton for local charities.
What is your background, what should our readers know about you?
I am a WordPress entrepreneur. After my studies that were tourism related, I ended up creating websites. Thirteen years ago I founded Level Level, a full service WordPress Agency. I love visiting other WordCamps and travelling in general. I love being able to just open my laptop on the other side of the world and work on awesome projects with my team.
For how long have you been using WordPress? And why you’ve chosen WordPress?
I have been working with WordPress since 2.0, which also marks the start of my company Level Level. With more and more clients we needed to move from static sites to a CMS. I fell in love with WordPress and made it into our weapon of choice.
How did you get involved in the WordPress community?
Initially it started online. I think it was via Twitter that I realised that there was such a thing as a community. I remember my very first WordCamp very well, especially meeting people IRL that I had been interacting with via other media. Ever since I have been attending WP Meetups and WordCamps all over the world. In 2015 I decided it was time to get on stage to speak and in 2018 I co-organised my very first WordCamp. At the moment I am part of the organising team of both WordCamp Rotterdam and WordCamp Europe.
Today you’re playing a key role in the WordCamp organization, tell our readers more about the biggest challenges, the innovations and the new trends of the WordCamp Rotterdam.
I believe the biggest challenge we face at the moment is the amount of local WordCamps in the Netherlands. We now have 4 local WordCamps per year and it becomes increasingly difficult to find both sponsors and speakers for these events. To combat this particular challenge we decided to try something new with WordCamp Rotterdam by organising the first Dutch do_action hackaton at night!
For you, what’s the magical recipe for a successful WordPress WordCamp or Meetup?
I would say the magic recipe is a well organised and inclusive event with an amazing speaker line-up. A good line-up with a variety of talks and topics will attract new visitors and spark new connections, ideas and cooperations.
What will be the future of the Rotterdam WordPress community?
Hard to say, I’d like to focus on the upcoming (and a bit experimental) WordCamp Rotterdam and take it from there.