2nd Local London Meetup

Follow-up topic of: Local meetup London on 26 February 2024: please reply to topic to confirm attendance - #113 by py0xc3

… in order to discuss the next Local London Meetup & everything around it :slight_smile:

Related Matrix channel: https://chat.fedoraproject.org/#/room/#uk:fedoraproject.org


We’ve awakened a small but passionate group of Fedora contributors and users living in the United Kingdom.
We had a chance to introduce ourselves, share our ideas and passion points in February at a vibrant community of University College London (UCL).

I’m amazed by a depth and variety of topics and experience of attendees - security, cluster, HPC, Computational Neurosciences, mechanical engineering, FPGA programming, OpenShift, and community building & nurturing.

From this first meetup, it is refreshing for me to have a burst of energy back into day to day routine. I hope we can continue to grow and adapt this meetup that works for more people.


Does it make sense to already identify a date for the next meetup?

I guess it would start with the question if we do one in March. I have
much flexibility in March so far. I will be abroad in April (away
beginning 27.3.), but then back in Mai.

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There’s the Easter break long weekend coming up soon and lots of people (including me) will use that to go on holiday. So, it’ll probably have to be in the next two weeks, or in April after Easter?

I’m also very flexible. As long as I can book the evening out beforehand, I can pretty much do any day.

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I’ll be on a long holiday in April, so I need to complete many things in March before I’m away.
Earliest for me is May.


If we do it again in the evening (after 15:00), I can attend every day in the next two weeks, but also most in March.

I cannot attend in April either. I would then join again when I’m back in May.

So here it looks like worth checking if there are sufficient attendees for the next to weeks and then consider May as next opportunity. But I’ll put it in the chat to see how it is there.

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I had to schedule two appointments, so I have to remove the 15th and 18th from my availability list :blush:

Happy to support remotely how I can! If the Red Hat office in London ever makes for an ideal venue, I am happy to work with the local team again to make it happen. The local team has been friendly and easy to work with. Although it does seem like the university worked well as a venue this last time? :slightly_smiling_face:

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We’ll let you know the date for next meetup well in advance. I’m fairly certain it is a good idea to have a base location for meetup and the Red Hat office would be handy to organize meetup. Attendees in Feb suggested the idea as well.

We could rotate it depending on availability. Thanks a million!


Giving a passing thought as to how meetup can be accessible to more people regardless of where you are based, and what personal interest you have, I would like to suggest;

  • Host hybrid meetup: For people who want to join remotely, use of video conference tool like Jitsi would help engage more contributors. With external webcam, we can show hands-on demo like RISC-V beyond screenshare.
  • Create wishlist: A local meetup is being incubated from a desire to revive Fedora UK Advocate/Ambassador, who can represent Fedora Projects in FOSS events and foster collaboration within Fedora and FOSS community outside Fedora. Before we create agenda, we could encourage more participation by setting expectations and sharing wishlist.

Ultimately, I’m looking for golden answers on how to retain contributors with you, passionate people, who showed an interest in this forum and took part in the first meetup.

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We have to be careful to not develop this into a dedicated marketing / recruitment event (which is not to say that it has no place, but it should not be the determining emphasis). Otherwise, those who are not engaged with such activities might be lost.

The great advantage of face-to-face-meetings is that people engage in a more casual and intuitive manner rather than (in the extreme case) typing on keyboards. This offers many opportunities for innovation and collaboration but also identifies opportunities that might remain hidden in digital meetings. We should exploit that, and I am not sure if adding video conferencing as a default means can jeopardize that: in such hybrid meetings, people tend to emphasize on activities that the external people can be involved in, in order to not exclude them. Therefore, it can be argued that then there is no longer a reason to join personally. People also psychologically behave different, especially more passively, if what they say and do is sent “to the world”.

We should focus on exploiting what is possible locally, and make use of the face-to-face opportunities. For bringing people together globally, we have the Fedora Social hour, or the respective meetings of the SIGs.

However, I like the idea to also make a “small conference”-like event at some point, which might indeed be complemented by hybrid formats. But I would first observe how things develop over some time, and identify what “shapes” Fedora London.

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I remember there are three people who live far from London.

Hybrid meetings for a certain format (like mini-workshop or tech showcase) wouldn’t hurt. The UK is huge and long distance train journeys cost more than air travel to the Czech Republic, for example.

In person only meetup also creates an atmosphere being a part of the “in” group. Impactful discussion is not always happening within the “in” group and in person meetings.

Promotion shouldn’t be frowned upon. The FOSS meetup takes the form of an advocate group of some sort. Once the group is big enough, it will grow to ambassadors. We are part of it, aren’t we?

In discourse, we can make preemptive questions for brainstorming in the meetings next time:

  • What impact do we want in the Fedora community with the UK Meetup?
  • What do you individually want to get out of this meetup?

I think we are mixing up two different things here: a local London meetup and a UK SIG.

The local London meetup is to exploit the possibilities of face-to-face meetings. The more people we can include the better, and maybe thinking about multiple locations might be worth a thought as well if it increases participants, but if someone is not close enough to London area to attend, then it makes no difference if that person is Birmingham UK or in Amsterdam NL: we all would love to make a Fedora meetup that allows everyone around the world to participate, but this is not realistic. So we have to do a London meetup, not UK. If it gets digital to avoid geographical limitations, then there is no reason to limit it to UK but then it would be a global event anyway, and in such a case, we are back to the Fedora meetings that already exist.

However, what you describe is a Fedora UK SIG. I do not know if geographic SIGs already exist, but they inevitably would overlap with functional SIGs, and overlaps inevitably lead to interaction and outreach. So that is indeed worth a discussion, and it would be complementary to the Local London meetup (and as such worth a point on the agenda). But it is still two different things, and we should dedicate a topic for that if there is an intention to create a SIG like that. It should contain a clear emphasis in its activities / goals from the beginning, but given what you say, your initial goal might be to “incorporate” the activities that used to be related to the Ambassador, or identify an ambassador and support them in their activities. As far as it concerns me, I would be happy to help with admin/org stuff if you need help with that, but I am not sure if I can contribute much more to that.

But in any case, I think we should not merge a local London meetup and a potential UK SIG. So I suggest to open a new topic for that? And maybe link it to the UK channel so that others can consider it as well?

I didn’t imagine two different meetup by geographic coverage within the UK. I must have caused a confusion due to Ambassador, which is a regional entity and has governance structure under Fedora Ambassadors Steering Committee. True, I mixed it up with our meetup. Splitting meetup into two because of benign mistakes in communication should be avoided.

Adding a video conference is to accommodate folks who are willing to participate, but can’t travel down to London as scheduled by majority voting. However, I don’t mean to default our communication to hybrid all the time. I wanted to offer an opportunity to those who can’t travel, but would look for in person meetings in London next time.

As the Matrix Chat room for our group tells us, it is Fedora UK “Fedora contributors and users living in the United Kingdom”. Some people would be willing to travel regardless of distance. Often, schedule clash, other commitment and time management would be an issue for UK residents living in different counties.

A local meetup idea started from the Fedora Advocate Program. An approval from Mindshare to host a local event is based on a procedure written on the Mindshare committee’s team documentation.

Maybe, we could wait to hear from long-term contributors about their wisdom and how other regions organize a local meetup and what models work best so far.


Just to clarify a little misunderstanding: be aware that SIG means Special Interest Group, which is not equal to a meetup → Category:SIGs - Fedora Project Wiki . But a SIG can have a meetup for example. You can argue that the UK channel in Matrix effectively already is a new SIG: but that this is a UK-wide SIG does not imply that we need to force the London meetup to be a UK-wide meetup. SIGs are what their members make out of it, mostly based on consensus or lazy approval. It is nothing formal that needs approval in its evolvement from mindshare or so. There is also no formal requirement for us to fix / decide if the local London meetup is part of the SIG or not. SIGs are informal to achieve innovation and see what collaborative competition creates. Sometimes SIGs evolve to working groups (WGs) or subprojects at some point and become so successful that Fedora starts to rely on them (such as Workstation WG), which makes it then more formal and thus more regulated from higher committees. But there is a long way until that :wink:

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I guess if we need some space to fix and distribute static information, the wiki is the intended one for that.

I have tried to keep the formulations sufficiently generic to leave open what is not yet decided. Feel free to correct it if you want.

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Just to collect some information about when it makes sense to do the next meetup, a little poll:

  • I have increased flexibility in April and likely can join!
  • I could be available in April, but it depends very much on the day
  • Maybe I will be available in April, but I don’t know at this time. I hope I can make it possible.
  • I will not be available in April
  • I have increased flexibility in May and likely can join!
  • I could be available in May, but it depends very much on the day
  • Maybe I will be available in May, but I don’t know at this time. I hope I can make it possible.
  • I will not be available in May
  • I have increased flexibility in June and likely can join!
  • I could be available in June, but it depends very much on the day
  • Maybe I will be available in June, but I don’t know at this time. I hope I can make it possible.
  • I will not be available in June
0 voters

As mentioned in the London meetup wiki topic, the poll assumes the meetup to take place in the evening close to at least one London terminal, but never on weekends.

There is not yet a fixed time when this poll ends, its data will be only to offer indication, the month will not be fixed without more information about how many people are available at which days.

This discussion has a lot of good topics emerging that are not specific to the next London meetup! In order to keep this Discussion topic focused, I created two new Discussion topics for conversations I thought we should keep having:

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So far, most is about how to get more contributors and contribution rather than making something of those we already have (or had). This can challenge the “return on (time) investment” for people who want to exploit local possibilities and see where they develop, and I fear that the emphasis decreases the attendance (and that it makes the means to become the end).

My perception was that the time after the official meetup (having a drink together more casually) has been the most productive part, where people can more casually get in touch with each other and get in touch with each others knowledge/perceptions/thoughts. This is already an achievement that can develop. And it can identify intuitively if individuals’ goals have synergies that can cause collaboration and become a common agenda among some.

With this in mind, and because so far we do not know if there is already a clear common goal/agenda to collaborate against, I tend to think about “degrading” the event to a more casual social event: A Fedora call for a drink, and Fish & Chips who wants it :wink: And if synergies / common topics come up, these can develop back to something more formal, such as setting up a meeting with the topic on the agenda. Maybe one, maybe more topics, everyone involved with any of them shall join. Just an example.

Maybe this is more advantageous for the beginning, without trying to enforce anything (which also doesn’t mean to enforce to keep it that way of course). Or something in between? What do others think?

Just a thought to introduce another perspective :slight_smile:


Hi folks. I would welcome any opportunity to network with Fedora users and enthusiasts in real life regardless of the specific format. I wouldn’t mind a separate “virtual meetup” to network with those located elsewhere in the UK. (But maybe that’s a discussion for the UK SIG thread?)

For the London meetup are there any further views on dates? Is there a way that we can encourage more responses to the poll?