Meetup.com is changing the way its website works, much to the dismay of Organizers. As if the high cost of fees were not enough, now Meetup is completely revamping the interface for its website.
Features that have long been used to manage groups are being removed, and an ugly generic interface takes away the customized pages people have spent time creating to showcase their group.
This has been done without consultation with Organizers, and the company is not interested in feedback. It would appear the very people who make Meetup possible in the first place, by paying fees and putting in the hard work, mean nothing to the company.
Eventpeg.com has been developed to bring commonsense back to running a meet-up group, and to value its members as vital assets.
The website brings back features that have been slowly disappearing from Meeetup for years, and will most likely be even more drastically reduced come October.
Built using the open source WordPress platform, Eventpeg uses over 30 free and paid plugins to provide a fully featured website that meets the needs of both Organizers and members. The fees are a fraction of those at Meetup, making it affordable to anyone.
Groups can personalize their pages and add extra ones themselves to provide potential members with information about how the group operates and what it’s about. File uploads are allowed, as well as group photo albums. Three levels of privacy are available – public, closed and hidden.
Individual members have five levels of privacy – public, other members, friends, group members and private. There is an internal messaging system, with the ability to block unwanted contact.
In fact the whole website philosophy of Eventpeg is built around security, privacy and a community atmosphere. Members are valued, whether they are paying Organizers or simply free group members. No one is treated as just a source of income for a company that is only interested in profit.
While some people believe Meetup.com and sites like it are going the way of the dinosaur, there will always be a need for people to have a central hub for meetings. Sites like Facebook may be good for social connection, but their ability to provide the features needed for a meet-up site just aren’t anywhere near what is actually required.
Meetup has spent 15 years riding on the back of Organizers to get where it is today. They may just have made their biggest mistake. Empires rise and fall much quicker on the internet than in real life. There is always someone waiting in the wings to start the next wave – and all waves start off small.