Support » Everything else WordPress » Support/Mentors/Welcome Wagon

  • One of the things I’d like to see happen in 2010 in the WordPress community is the formation of some new ways for people to help each other use WordPress and get involved in the WordPress open source project. Some ideas I’ve had floating around my head for awhile include:

    • Welcome wagon/buddy system – when someone joins the support forums, a volunteer greets them and offers to help them as they get used to how things are set up (forums, Codex, reporting bugs, etc). The buddy would check in with the new member every couple of weeks to see how things are going. Buddy assignments would last 2-3 months. If we add geodata to profiles, people could potentially request buddies in their general location.
    • Developer mentor program – similar to the buddy system idea above, but for developers interested in contributing to core. The elder buddy would have excellent coding skills, and would have had x number of patches accepted to core before becoming a buddy. Buddies would check in with their new developers every couple of weeks to see how things are going, provide guidance as needed (direct them to appropriate resources, help brainstorm approaches, etc), and would provide feedback on tickets that the new developer submitted. This last would help speed up the revisions process before a committer looked at the patch, and could help prevent the unfortunate possibility of a patch being rejected and not looked at again before the next dev cycle.
    • Support forum moderator mentor program – similar to the way the dev buddy program would work, this would help groom the next generation of support forum moderators. Experienced mods would buddy up with active volunteers who just need a little help around the edges and give feedback on their advice, point them to resources to help them fill in the gaps in their knowledge, etc.
    • Local user groups/meetups – I know there are a bunch of these already, organized via or individual people, but it would be nice to have something people could find from the official hub.

    So maybe all of you can think of some ideas and post them here, discuss, and after the new year we can pick a couple of ideas to try.

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 16 total)
  • Welcome wagon, moderator mentor, and a central hub for meetups are all stellar ideas. 🙂

    Totally willing to be on the Welcome Wagon. Can I hand out virtual cookies?

    I personally like that they all involve being a “buddy” of some fashion.


    I think we definitely need to look at something off of the official hub for local meetups and groups.

    It would be great to have a way to list and interact by city and zip.

    Cheers and great post about all of the contributors.


    Weblog Tools Collection had a post last week about orphaned plugins. There were some suggestions made of ways to allow people to adopt abandoned plugins or put their plugins up for adoption before they become abandoned. I think that’s a support idea worth pursuing.


    There seems to be a lot of this going on and I think this would be another great add-on to the main hub!

    Great idea.

    Sounds like a great idea. I especially like the mentor approach. Many people are at different levels and mentors could decide which level they would like to coach.

    All the above ideas are wonderful.
    Major kudos to those who help here. thank you.

    I got off to a rocky start at the forums, not something that I usually have happen as forums are the best place to learn.
    One thing I would love to see as a new WP user, is to have the forums searchable by ‘resolved’, & date… all too often i am wading through tons of unresolved threads about way older wp versions.

    And, I have read the codex, so many times, but if there is a ‘that does not compute’ going on, being redirected back to the codex as an answer isn’t really helpful.

    Just some thoughts on making the forums more user friendly.


    I also like the open dns community system of points and total posts, ideas, etc. It would also be cool to have numbered ranking system along with a hierarchy other than member, moderator, and administrator. Something like “new guy”, “not quite as new anymore guy”, and “so old you really cant say he’s new at all guy” (or something equitable)

    Hi, you can use also karma systeme like in other cms (phpbb and joomla …)

    I’ve found wordpress to be already be running a friendly, accessible and useful community. All the above sound good, but perhaps a little overkill, just keep doing what your doing!



    I’m new to the community but not new to wordpress.. I like the developer mentor program idea. Since I’m learning to create my first wp theme or maybe wp plugin

    Thread Starter Jen


    @80giga: Creating a system of “levels” based on contributions is one of the ideas being tossed around.

    I like the idea of a mod mentor program and a more formal way of organizing and finding local user group meet-ups. This could help people who live in less populated areas find users and organize meet-ups. A few of other ideas to consider:

    1. Either use different software (dare I say, phpBB) for the support forum site or improve the search and post tracking features of this software significantly. Being able to subscribe to individual posts/threads would be a huge plus.

    2. The stickys at the top for the forums (when you choose to see all topics) is getting way too long. Having to scroll down a full page to start seeing the most recent content is annoying. Again, a better, more robust discussion forum system would help to eliminate that problem.

    3. A system of levels based on contributions is a good idea, but it can’t be based solely on contributions. I don’t know the best answer to identify the levels, but creating some form of “authority” based entirely on number of posts can result in more problems than not having a system at all.

    4. And finally, stop running off good contributors with this kind of crap:

    A mentor system seems like a good idea, but I have to wonder how people would keep up simply because there is such a massive volume of posts here.

    It would really help if the software running the forums was improved – so many other forums are much more accessible than here.

    I think a separate forum on which only this with plugins in the repository can access would be quite effective. There’s just too much noise in the public forum for discussing serious plugin related issues to be viable IMO.

    This would automatically lead to buddy’ing up/mentoring as those who have enough knowledge to help would know exactly where to go to offer assistance.

    Or at least that’s my theory anyway :p

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 16 total)
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