I have been a member of various ‘meetups’ for years now, but it was only the last 3 months that I feel that I worked up enough courage to actually attend an event again. I had been looking around on the site one day and found a few groups for people here in Melbourne in the eLearning arena. I figured I might meet some like-minded people, make a few connections, find more instructional designers and developers and who know’s might get some jobs out of it (As I have been needing work!).
I remember the first event I went to, years ago, was the Web Design Meetup, and it ended up a crazy experience. There were about 50 people crammed into a small pub in the city. There wasn’t much of an agenda, and being near the end of the year, the team posed the question, “What trends do you predict for the next year?” It basically opened up a giant can of worms, giving every armchair philosopher a chance to ramble on about the impact that social networking sites are having on our society. At one point, this older guy threw up his arms and said he’d had it with all this “branding” talk. “It’s a bunch of bullshit.” Having said all that, something good came from it though: I met people and got to hear what people are working on. Might go to more next year.