Meet ups were already broken

Today, meetups are what we call a congregation of strangers who are interested in the same topic.

It appears that meetups are a victim of the pandemic and its varied restrictions. However, even before social distancing entered our vocabulary, meetups were broken.

In most pre-pandemic meetups, I suffered through the following problems

  • A room with fifty people taking turns to introduce themselves
  • The five people whom I thought were interesting were stuck speaking to somebody else
  • It was difficult to break off conversation with somebody when it turned long and wasteful
  • Presentations that nobody was interested in

In effect, most meetups often blew up an entire evening with nothing to show for it

In-person meetups were terrible. A well designed online space gives us several ways to address their problems. I have been to events that do this already, with bios instead of intros, fifteen minute one-on-one meeting slots, breakout room discussions etc.

The pandemic didn’t kill meetups. It potentially shocked them back to life.

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