WordCamp Asia 2023 wraps up

6 min read
Courtney Robertson

This year, WordCamp initiated its first flagship event in Asia as interest in the WordPress community continues to expand globally. And with WordPress turning 20 this year, it’s the perfect time to celebrate with a new location — especially after it was originally postponed due to the pandemic in 2020. 

WordCamp Asia took place February 17 -19, 2023 in Bangkok, Thailand.

The first flagship WordCamp Asia made landfall in February 2023!

Past WordCamp events have typically been held in regions like the United States, Europe and Centroamérica. But this year’s event centered on the city of Bangkok, Thailand as a unique opportunity for creators and innovators to explore new ideas related to the WordPress open source project.

Why Bangkok, Thailand? 

Bangkok, Thailand sits in the center of Asia — making it the ideal choice for accessibility. It has a bustling city life that’s filled with food markets, beaches and historical landmarks that help attract global travelers far and wide.

Many entrepreneurs and startups also find the business culture here desirable, which helps fuel curiosity when it comes to building better technology for the future. 

View inside WordCamp Asia hotel venue

The event itself was held at the True Icon Hall at the ICONSIAM, a mixed-use development space situated near the Chao Phraya River. Here, guests enjoyed a mixture of shopping, dining and entertainment happenings that celebrate the local culture. 

And of course, WordCamp Asia came with its own mascot, Chao Phraya Boat Wapuu!

So, what is a WordCamp anyway?

WordCamp events allow creatives and innovators to come together and share ideas on how to improve the WordPress platform.

The cool part about WordCamp is that you don’t need to be an expert in your field to attend. Most beginners use this event as a launching point to ask questions from industry experts and seek feedback from hands-on learning exercises. 

Ultimately, the overall vibe is focused on building relationships and supporting the WordPress community in all its facets.        

WordCamp Asia 2023 recap: Quick stats at a glance

    • Location: Bangkok, Thailand at the ICONSIAM venue

    • Duration: 17 to 19 Feb 2023

    • Participants: 1,500+

    • Sessions: 55 

    • Speakers: 60

    • Organizers: 53

    • Volunteers: 84

    • Sponsors: 44

    • Media Partners: 7

Say hello to the GoDaddy ground team 

As a proud supporter of the WordPress community, the GoDaddy team joined the action with over 40 representatives from various brands within the company. 

GoDaddy team waving
    • Adam Warner – Director of Field Marketing
    • Courtney Robertson -Web Designer & Developer Advocate
    • Mike Schroder - Performance team contributor
    • George Mamadashvili - Gutenberg contributor
    • Gina Innocent - Field Marketing Specialist
    • Ken Crockett - Community contributor
    • Maja Loncar - Field Marketing, EMEA
    • Guarav Nakul - Sr. Marketing Manager, India
    • Drew Wilde - Managed WordPress Hosting
    • Brian Bautista - Media
    • Nikki Chavengsub - Director of Marketing, APAC
    • Nada ElSharkawy - Marketing Manager, APAC
    • Auch Lim - Marketing Manager, APAC

Contributor Day at WordCamp Asia recap

One of the most important ways WordCamp attendees are empowered is through Contributor Day.

This is where WordPress users from all over the platform and the globe are divided into teams to discuss how they can help the overall project.

It's also a great chance for people to ask questions and meet new people from different industries.

We asked our team on the ground to describe their experience at WordCamp Asia’s Contributor Day. 

What was your experience as a contributor at Contributor Day? 

Gaurav Nakul

"It’s a great way to meet people, learn and contribute in many ways that help the larger community. Attendees and organisers are Extremely approachable and knowledgeable people which makes it a wonderful experience."

Drew Wilde

"Excellent opportunity to learn new corners in the WordPress community. Additionally, it provides a very easy networking opportunity as you solve problems together."

Nada ElSharkawy

Nada ElSharkawy

"Contributor day isn't only a chance to contribute and give back to the WordPress community but also it's a chance to meet new people, build connections and network with WordPress-ers from all around the world!"

Courtney Robertson

"Each person has a unique voice and talent they bring to shaping the future of WordPress."

Adam Warner

Adam Warner

"Seeing so many people turn out for Contributor Day to keep the project moving forward and growing was inspiring. We had great discussions about what we could do to better support those wanting to organize their local communities around WordPress. As sponsors of Meetups and WordCamps globally, we worked on enhancing the existing organizer handbook to provide deeper clarity on many topics to help make organizing easier."

Mike Schroder

"I enjoyed helping folks get connected with the Hosting Team!

I did a lot of onboarding -- around 10 folks were new to the team and got connected to WordPress Slack, the hosting-community channel, and the projects that the team works on.

Several folks submitted feedback and suggestions for changes for the Advanced Administration Handbook (https://github.com/WordPress/Advanced-administration-handbook/) that is in progress.

Others worked on setting up automated testing at their hosting company, or submitting PRs to improve the automated hosting tests (https://github.com/WordPress/phpunit-test-runner/)!"

Auch Lim

Auch Lim

"It's interesting to see how people from different backgrounds can contribute to the various teams despite having little to no experience! There's always someone to get us started."

WordCamp Asia x GoDaddy Boat Party

You might've noticed that we have a thing for boats during WordCamps. In Porto, we set sail on a pirate ship for WordCamp Europe 2022, and again in San Diego for WordCamp US 2022.

This year, we had a wild time with our friends on the Chao Phraya river!

Aerial shot of GoDaddy party goers on boat

People chatting near the DJ at the GoDaddy boat party

Session Recap – WordCamp Asia 2023

Our team on the ground learned a lot and took some notes on their favorite sessions. 

Carole Olinger - Stepping Back to Move Forward

Carole joined the WordPress community in 2016 during a four-year sabbatical to take care of her mental health that changed her life. Having quit her former job as a government administrator, she left her home country of Luxembourg and threw herself into WordCamp volunteering, organizing, and speaking while traveling the world. Carole spoke at WordCamp Asia on the importance of self care and being open about mental health, especially when out at a WordCamp!

Carole Olinger of Yoast presenting

Ajit Bohra - The Power of Empathy

Ajit spoke about empathy and provided personal anecdotes about the power of being there for people and finding the good in people. Some key points we found quite powerful were “Selfishness is a path to anxiety” and “working with humans and not resources.”

Michelle Frechette - Look for the Good

We’ve dealt with so much since 2020 as a global community. Michelle spoke passionately about her story in WordPress and the importance of the community in her life. Touching on the kindness of those that make people’s lives better and more enjoyable. How do we move forward? Hope in the community to incorporate people and to make “good” in the community.