This new year start with the death of PASS, the professional association that for so many years supported the SQLFamily around the world and helped so many to achieve their professional goals.
You can still read the communication, but PASS is ‘going dark’ on January 15, meaning none of its features and resources will be available after this date.
How can we keep the community together?
Challenging times result in tough people. The SQLFamily is tough and is proving it creating many replacements to keep the community together and making this in an organized way. Check the new meeting points and resources for the SQLFamily:
Microsoft announced they will provide some resources for SQL Server User Groups. All PASS User Groups should fill the form with Microsoft and wait for further communication.
The resources will be very welcome. I’m not a rooter of meetup communities, all of them I saw usually are very passive, without much interaction. Even so, it will be very welcome.
PASS holds the SQL Saturday name, we can’t create more SQL Saturdays. However, we only need to change the name and a big step was made by the community to replace SQL Saturdays with Data Saturdays.
I asked for an event myself, it will be the first Malta Data Saturday!
Hosting for Groups
SQLUGS provides hosting for user groups, you only need to ask. It’s a great way to replace the websites provided by PASS and it’s free
The Data Community portal helps to spread the world about community events and it’s an interesting possible replacement to PASS. It also has a github repository, although I’m not sure if it is complete.
Call For Data Speakers
As the name implies, it’s a website to make speakers and event organizers meet themselves and discover the events around the community
Call For Speakers Facebook Group
A facebook group exclusive for speakers and event organizers to announce CfS’s
There are many online services available to help user group leaders to replace the resources provided by PASS. Here are some of them:
EventBrite: It’s great to create event registrations and announce events
Sessionize: This website was already becoming very common among the SQLFamily. When PASS announced it will be going dark on January 15, Sessionize included a new feature: Speakers can now search for events.
On a side note, the Data Saturdays are being built using EventBrite and Sessionize.
Meetup: Most user groups had their members registered with PASS. They have until January 15 to create other ways to register their members and invite everyone who is registered with PASS to register with the local group. Many groups are using meetup for this. The meetup is a paid service. The free version only allows 50 members.
Mailchimp: This is a great tool to create newsletters to the registered user group members, however, it can’t be used alone. It will require a facebook group or whatsApp group, some other online resource to keep the members in touch and interacting.
The SQLFamily is replacing PASS resources very fast and this is great. There is even some overlap on the sites and services created.
I hope this blog post can be useful as a reference point for the community and to help everyone expose their ideas on the comments and work to merge all solutions in a service to provide the user groups need.
Probably I forgot many other resources from the community, please, remind me on the comments.