Spreading the Word on WordCamp Philly

November 5th marked the annual WordCamp Philly – a much-anticipated conference for designers and developers in the Philly area that use WordPress. WordCamp Philly is intended to be the premiere WordPress-related technical conference in Philadelphia, offering various seminars and sessions designed to grow and enhance your WordPress skills.

I signed up for WordCamp Philly, excited to attend and listen to the presentation given by Doug Stewart: Adding a Social ‘Stache: BuddyPress, bbPress And Beyond.

Doug Stewart is co-founder of the Philadelphia WordPress Meetup Group and an established BuddyPress developer – an expert, in my opinion.

Doug did a great job of explaining multiple benefits of adding these social applications, BuddyPress and bbPress, to your WordPress-enabled website.

Below are some notes from the presentation:

Why go social with WordPress and your website?

  • Increase capability and potential for user engagement
  • Encourage contribution for users
  • Make it easier for users to engage with content
  • Give “freshness” to a site
  • Increase a sense of ownership
  • Add a sense of community

Why use BuddyPress versus bbPress?

For smaller, simpler applications – use bbPress. bbPress is only a forum solution, meaning that it will only add forum capability to your site. Alternatively, BuddyPress offers a lot more features, including messaging and friend connections, but it is more complex.

Who uses bbPress: forums, forums, Dropbox Support Forums

Who uses BuddyPress: CUNY Academic Commons, Solo Practice University, hMAG, GigaOm Pro

Doug made a very valid point that you should not implement tools on your website that will not be used. If your community is small, it doesn’t make sense to implement friends, private messages, etc. Start with a forum and, as your community builds, implement new features that your community will love and utilize regularly.

bbPress –

BuddyPress –

Travis Hoglund
Zer0 to 5ive Senior Developer