Photography Meetups: A Snapshot

Here at Meetup, we are constantly working to build new features and improve existing ones to better serve our diverse community. Some Meetups make frequent use of onsite messaging, while others prefer to share ideas in message boards. One of the best parts of working at Meetup is getting to see all of the unique ways Meetup groups make the platform work for them.

Recently, we spent some time digging into how Meetups in the Photography category make the most of our platform. Photography Meetup groups are notoriously good at keeping their members engaged both offline and online, so there’s a ton to learn from them no matter what the scope of your Meetup may be!

 

Photo Contests

Tokyo Visionary Photographers Meetup

(c/o george p., Tokyo Visionary Photographers Meetup)

It should come as no surprise that Photography Meetup groups love our photo tools. They create tons of photo albums documenting Meetup events and projects that members are working on together. But they don’t stop there – they use photo albums to host photo contests. While each Meetup group has their own style of contest, one thing remains the same: the interactive and (friendly!) competition of photo contests are super effective at keeping members engaged.

 

Comments

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(c/o Houston Photowalks Meetup)

Photography Meetups are built around creating and sharing images, but that doesn’t mean that members shy away from the written word! In between Meetup events, members of photography Meetups stay connected by commenting on photos and events to share tips, thoughts, critiques, or just to chat. This is an awesome way to keep the community alive and to keep connections between members strong.

 

Photos of Meetups

The New York City Digital Photography Meetup

(c/o lynman91, The New York City Digital Photography Meetup)

You don’t have to be a member of a photography Meetup group to take photos! One of the biggest reasons that members don’t come out to Meetups is because they just don’t know quite what to expect! Meeting up can be nerve-wracking at first, and using photos to give new members a super clear idea about what they can expect is an awesome way to ease those first-time jitters. Not only do Photography Meetups share photos from projects and shoots, they’re also great about snapping shots of the Meetups themselves. Seeing an album full of smiling faces is sure to make any newcomer feel welcome.

 

Varied Meetups

Sonoma County Photography Meetup

(c/o Sonoma County Photography Meetup)

From photo walks that allow members to rediscover their city, to studio sessions and workshops where amateur photogs can step up their game, and even the occasional happy hour, photography Meetups know that hosting a variety of Meetups keeps members coming back for more. Meetup fatigue is common when there’s only one type of gathering repeated ad infinitum. By playing with venues and activities, members are more likely to feel that each Meetup will be a unique experience not to be missed.

So whether you’re long-time organizer or you’ve just started your first Meetup group, there’s a ton to be learned from Photography Meetups on how to keep members engaged and excited. Have some more tips of your own you want to share? Let us know! We’d love to chat 🙂

Meetup joins tech companies to stand with Apple

Meetup believes our members have a right to privacy, security, and transparency: values which underlie the fabric of the internet. That’s why we joined 16 other tech companies (representing more than one billion users) to stand with Apple against government overreach and to protect the privacy and security of our members. Together, we filed an amicus brief that argues the government should not be allowed to force Apple to make software to break their own security.

Member privacy and security is a priority for Meetup, and something we’ll champion inside and outside of Meetup HQ.

(For those who haven’t followed the case closely, you can read all about it in Wired.)

Political Meetups

As a platform that specializes in grassroots organizing, Meetup is a natural fit for political campaign supporters.

Every election season sees new Meetups popping up all over the country (and world) for Republicans, Democrats, and Independents alike.

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Photo from The Democratic Socialists of America Meetup

Some Meetup veterans may remember back in 2004, when people around the country self-organized through Meetup to help Howard Dean’s campaign grow as the first presidential candidate to mobilize through a major internet presence.

Dean’s rise from a small-state governor to a serious contender for the Democratic candidacy showed how powerful individual supporters can be when they gather face to face to support their candidate.

During a primary season especially dominated by interest groups and super PACs, it can be easy to feel individual voices aren’t being heard.

Campaign supporter Meetups are helping individuals to launch local communities that amplify their message and build momentum for the candidates they feel represent them the best.

Here are some ways a local campaign supporter Meetup can mobilize behind their candidates:

  • Debate and caucus/primary watch parties: Gather at a bar or a home to watch results roll in or discuss the debates
  • Canvassing: Partner with your local campaign office or make your own flyers, then hit the streets
  • Fundraisers: Host a bake sale or plan a lavish gala — whatever it takes to raise funds for your team
  • Rally!: Make posters and bring your community to a local rally or travel to a major convention to make an impact

Find a Meetup for a movement or campaign that means something to you and your community, or start your own.

In the words of Margaret Mead: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

Be a Doll, Give a Doll

The Black Doll Affair community is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, with chapters across the United States. Their mission: “to change the way black girls are perceived and, more importantly, perceive themselves.” 

The movement has received national attention as a past recipient of the President’s Volunteer Service Award for their efforts.

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In celebration of Black History Month, they partnered with Macy’s to host a very special “Be a Doll, give a Doll” event, where members got dolled up in their favorite Black Doll T-shirts to “Be a Doll”, and give back to the community by bringing black dolls for donation. It was a huge success.

In their words: “This is where black girls grow into their true essence and awesomeness! This is where black gives back. This is where Black Dolls have more fun!”

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“I started Hackers and Founders Meetups years ago as a way to find people similarly interested building tech startups.  Who knew that helping entreprenerds connect over beer would strike such a chord with people because Hackers and Founders Meetups have now been held in 115 cities and 45 countries and over 250,000 people have attended HF events.

Since then, we’ve protested laws that threatened to break the internet, we’ve worked with the White House and Mayor Bloomberg’s office to help immigrant entrepreneurs get visas to launch their companies in the US, we’ve become advisors to law schools as well as the SEC on problems small businesses have.

Amazing things can happen when you meet people and pay it forward for years.”

Jonathan Nelson, Organizer

Meetup Fair

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Meetup is proud to announce a very special partnership with The Tech Museum of Innovation’s Creative Collisions program to bring you the Meetup Fair.

The Meetup Fair is an evening mash-up of superlative local Meetup groups from Quidditch Players to Doodlers, Technologists to Pop-up Singers, Filmmakers to Consciousness Hackers.

Creative Collisions is a series of programming sponsored by the Swanson Family at The Tech Museum of Innovation, designed to bring together makers and shakers of Silicon Valley for one-of-a-kind experiences.

Join us on February 16th to connect with creative leaders from your community and experience the diversity and wonder of San Jose Meetups featuring:

It will be a night to remember, showcasing Meetups in the valley about most everything, and for one evening, you’ll find them all in one great place.

We hope to see you there!

Becca and Steve at Wedding

“My fiance and I moved away from Fargo, so we transferred ownership of our Meetup to another organizer. We moved from our family homes originally in New Jersey to Fargo, North Dakota and now to St. Louis, Missouri.

I have Meetup to thank for the family of friends we have forged in both new cities. Were it not for Meetup, we never would have connected with the various people we now have come to know as family; in fact, at our wedding in March, we will be seating at least 10 guests we met exclusively through Meetup, or through other people we met thanks to Meetup.

Meetup has made the transition from city to city incredibly easy, and has lessened the time it has taken for us to integrate ourselves with the local culture. What’s more, we get to find the people and activities in which we really want to engage without having to poke around bars or other local hangout scenes and try to find people who share our interests.”

…………………………

Thank you, Metal Steve

 

 

boxing

Sydney’s Women’s Boxing Bootcamp Meetup is all about getting physically fit, having fun, de-stressing, and empowering women. They make good on their mission: “Real training. Real change. Real women. And lots of sweat!”

That’s a mission we can get behind, and the perfect way to kick off a dreary winter week…except in Sydney, where the sun is shining and their gloves are glistening.

Upcoming Meetups include Anti-Valentines Day Boxing Fun, where women can “expect a fun environment where you will always be challenged no matter what level of fitness.”

Not for the faint of heart? On the contrary, this Meetup is all heart, all the time.

Winter Sports Meetups

While many of us are cursing the weather outside and opting to stay warm by the fire, we’re going to check out some Meetups that are doing just the opposite.  

There’s no such thing as winter blues for these dynamic Meetups — serving as a major inspiration for all to bundle up, get outside, and enjoy all that winter has to offer.

iceThe mountains are calling, and if you’re located in Alaska, this Meetup’s mountaineering exploits seem epic. In December, The Alaska Mountaineers took a trip to Echo Bend for ice climbing that involved fording freezing rivers and climbing waterfalls (one member did it in crocs!) 

Who doesn’t want to start off their Monday at work by saying, “well this weekend, when I was ice climbing in Alaska…”?

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Experience Manitoba! Women’s Outdoor Adventure Meetup is living the dream by hosting 
dog sledding Meetups.  

Let’s be honest, screaming “mush” and watching a team of adorable dogs in their element sounds like a great way to spend a weekend with new friends.

icefish2

If you’re looking for something a little more chill, perhaps ice fishing is your thing. In Colorado, the Patriot Anglers Meetup recently went on a high altitude search for tiger and brook trout amidst stunning natural backdrops.

This Meetup group provides wonderful opportunities to fish, connect, volunteer and provide support and outdoors activities to veterans, friends and their families. 

icefish

Here are the Anglers enjoying a well-earned pint afterwards.

Meetups around the world are making the most of the winter weather, whether it’s creating the perfect snowman, sitting by the fire, skiing down some slopes, or strapping on a pair of snowshoes.

Just enter the word ‘Snow’ in the search box when looking for a Meetup near you to find your (snow) people too.

“…the thing about cancer is, it’s the club you didn’t want to join”

We host Organizer Lunches regularly at Meetup HQ. It’s a time for us to come together as a company and a community to share a meal and swap stories with local Meetup organizers.

At our most recent lunch, we met Mina Okpi who runs the Young Adult Cancer Collective in New York City, a Meetup group for Millenials with cancer. 

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She was diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma in 2015, and her life changed overnight. Her health deteriorated, she felt isolated, and she withdrew from her friends. She sought out traditional support groups, but they were often in hospital settings, served an older age group, and did not meet her needs.

She knew something needed to change, “if you can’t get yourself out of bed every day, you are not going to do as well with your treatment.” So she started a Meetup specifically focused on Millenials, and found members who were going through the same sense of isolation from their healthy peers.

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