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Nerd Fun - Boston Message Board Nerd Fun - Boston - Event Related Discussion › NERD FUN: Why rsvp YES and then not come?

NERD FUN: Why rsvp YES and then not come?

Liz
user 13542536
Cambridge, MA
Post #: 3
Good points all... I was thinking that charging a nominal fee (say, $1) would help people place more value on their rsvp. Free stuff tends to be less highly valued. So I was very surprised at the number of no-shows for the Shipwrecks talk yesterday: it cost $7 to the Essex Historical Society. So much for my theory! Oh well, not fussed about it. I had a nice time anyway with the meetup member who did show up. The main takeaway for me is, I won't organize something unless it happens to be something I'd go to and enjoy anyway. (Direct advice from Heather's FAQ.)
A former member
Post #: 8
­Because shit happens. I always change my rsvp to no if I can't make it.. but sometimes there are situations that make it impossible to do that. Really.. shit happens, its nothing personal and that is the only reason. I work for two other meetup groups and the trend of no shows is present there and in every other group. No reason to be upset about it.


There is a difference between a true "shit happens" moment and basic rudeness. And it's often obvious who is rude and who isn't.

I disagree...
Aside from talking about people who RSVP yes to everything and never show up... shit does just happen. Shit can consistently happen with some people, but at that point, they shouldn't be members of a meetup group anyways. It's a priority thing... not a rudeness thing. Sorry, but there is no such thing as rudeness on the interweb. It's incredibly hard, neigh, impossible to sort between rude and shit happens categories. Until you have a 'bullshit' meter, it's best to just assume that something critical came up, and in meetup groups- anything that isn't a 'fun time activity' that could occur in ones life will trump a meetup any day.
Also.. why the big deal? You wouldn't want to be friends or make connections with people like that if they annoy you, amirite?

Volunteer to run events and we'll see if you change your mind... this isn't the interweb ... this is real life - so rudeness has an impact on the organizers and the venues and events we attend.

The numbers on "no shows" is really high these days... I can't imagine that much shit is happenning.

again... glad for the dialogue

As I said earlier, I do run a meetup group. However, I don't plan anything unless I already want to attend it. I know, for instance, that my snowmobiling trip next month won't have many people- if any, because it is expensive, but 10 people have rsvp'd yes. I'd be nuts to think that I'll even see 3 of those people.. but it doesn't bother me, because i'm doing something I want to do.
If it is such a hardship for the people running this group, then why not have each person ONLY suggest and do the activities that they want to attend, and are willing to attend by themselves. You like movies, you start the meetups for movies and go to the ones you already want to see. This other guy likes outdoors stuff, let him organize outdoors stuff according to what he is going to do. Meetup groups often work better with a core team that can delegate events based on the 'come along' theory. Theory is, you're gonna do it anyways, and you're nice enough to extend an invitation with no expectations.
Another way to avoid headaches is to not do anything that you have to make reservations for. You can't make reservations if you don't know who is going. This way, the place doesn't get mad that you showed up alone.
To me, this is still the interweb. I've gone to countless meetup events, see someone, then never see them again. Just like in real life. ;) It's nice to make friends, but meetup is full of constant fluctuation in users and members of groups that it's likely you'll never see someone again.
When people RSVP, it is rarely the same 10 people that do it. So John doesn't show up one time, then Mary the next time. They are still separate people, so in most cases, it's not a constant offender. If there is a constant offender, then you need to boot them from the group. There is a way to track who doesn't show.. call them out on it.
Heather
sacajawea
Group Organizer
Cambridge, MA
Post #: 191
As I said earlier, I do run a meetup group. However, I don't plan anything unless I already want to attend it. I know, for instance, that my snowmobiling trip next month won't have many people- if any, because it is expensive, but 10 people have rsvp'd yes. I'd be nuts to think that I'll even see 3 of those people.. but it doesn't bother me, because i'm doing something I want to do.
If it is such a hardship for the people running this group, then why not have each person ONLY suggest and do the activities that they want to attend, and are willing to attend by themselves. You like movies, you start the meetups for movies and go to the ones you already want to see. This other guy likes outdoors stuff, let him organize outdoors stuff according to what he is going to do. Meetup groups often work better with a core team that can delegate events based on the 'come along' theory. Theory is, you're gonna do it anyways, and you're nice enough to extend an invitation with no expectations.
Another way to avoid headaches is to not do anything that you have to make reservations for. You can't make reservations if you don't know who is going. This way, the place doesn't get mad that you showed up alone.
To me, this is still the interweb. I've gone to countless meetup events, see someone, then never see them again. Just like in real life. ;) It's nice to make friends, but meetup is full of constant fluctuation in users and members of groups that it's likely you'll never see someone again.
When people RSVP, it is rarely the same 10 people that do it. So John doesn't show up one time, then Mary the next time. They are still separate people, so in most cases, it's not a constant offender. If there is a constant offender, then you need to boot them from the group. There is a way to track who doesn't show.. call them out on it.

this is our rule... that we only plan events that we want to go to anyways. I've been running this group for 3 years with no expectations that anyone's going to do what they say they are going to do.

but... alas... something happened... the local museums, colleges, movie houses, etc have discovered this group and monitor our event pages as well and plan accordingly.
So not only are Organizers at a loss when we plan events and people RSVP with the reliability of kindergardeners after cookie break - but the venues we visit have expectations too.

I'm a pretty busy person, I work full time, I have hobbies... I do a TON of stuff, and I run at least 2 events a month for my group here. I don't think it's too much for me to ask people to follow through on what they say they're going to do (Nigerian prince meetings and the sudden flu symptoms, excluded).

Taking attendance and badgering people are not at the top of my enjoyment list.

Nor is standing around a lobby and waiting for people that said they were going to come and didn't.

It's really kind of simple... I don't know why it's not just obvious for the large group of people that flake... the golden rule... walk in their shoes. We're volunteers. We're inclusive, good natured, intelligent, most of us are _really good looking_ ;-), we're doing something we don't need to do by inviting random internet strangers to events we like going to. I think people should be nice to us and be accountable with the ONE part they play in all of this: showing up when they said they would.


A former member
Post #: 9
As I said earlier, I do run a meetup group. However, I don't plan anything unless I already want to attend it. I know, for instance, that my snowmobiling trip next month won't have many people- if any, because it is expensive, but 10 people have rsvp'd yes. I'd be nuts to think that I'll even see 3 of those people.. but it doesn't bother me, because i'm doing something I want to do.
If it is such a hardship for the people running this group, then why not have each person ONLY suggest and do the activities that they want to attend, and are willing to attend by themselves. You like movies, you start the meetups for movies and go to the ones you already want to see. This other guy likes outdoors stuff, let him organize outdoors stuff according to what he is going to do. Meetup groups often work better with a core team that can delegate events based on the 'come along' theory. Theory is, you're gonna do it anyways, and you're nice enough to extend an invitation with no expectations.
Another way to avoid headaches is to not do anything that you have to make reservations for. You can't make reservations if you don't know who is going. This way, the place doesn't get mad that you showed up alone.
To me, this is still the interweb. I've gone to countless meetup events, see someone, then never see them again. Just like in real life. ;) It's nice to make friends, but meetup is full of constant fluctuation in users and members of groups that it's likely you'll never see someone again.
When people RSVP, it is rarely the same 10 people that do it. So John doesn't show up one time, then Mary the next time. They are still separate people, so in most cases, it's not a constant offender. If there is a constant offender, then you need to boot them from the group. There is a way to track who doesn't show.. call them out on it.

this is our rule... that we only plan events that we want to go to anyways. I've been running this group for 3 years with no expectations that anyone's going to do what they say they are going to do.

but... alas... something happened... the local museums, colleges, movie houses, etc have discovered this group and monitor our event pages as well and plan accordingly.
So not only are Organizers at a loss when we plan events and people RSVP with the reliability of kindergardeners after cookie break - but the venues we visit have expectations too.

I'm a pretty busy person, I work full time, I have hobbies... I do a TON of stuff, and I run at least 2 events a month for my group here. I don't think it's too much for me to ask people to follow through on what they say they're going to do (Nigerian prince meetings and the sudden flu symptoms, excluded).

Taking attendance and badgering people are not at the top of my enjoyment list.

Nor is standing around a lobby and waiting for people that said they were going to come and didn't.

It's really kind of simple... I don't know why it's not just obvious for the large group of people that flake... the golden rule... walk in their shoes. We're volunteers. We're inclusive, good natured, intelligent, most of us are _really good looking_ ;-), we're doing something we don't need to do by inviting random internet strangers to events we like going to. I think people should be nice to us and be accountable with the ONE part they play in all of this: showing up when they said they would.



Trust me, I know what you mean. It's just that bringing it to a discussion won't really help. It will 1) aggravate people who hate drama (me), and 2) alleviate organizers aggravations slightly by allowing people to offer up excuses... but it won't solve the problem.
When I come back from a meetup i've organized, I go through the list of people that have rsvp'd- both to see their profiles (people I liked) and to mark no-shows as no-shows. It's quick, and I know it's not fun.. but it gives you a sense of who is an A-hole and let you warn or boot them.
I find having a group be 'private' but allowing everyone who asks in helps weed out bad seeds. If they can't take the time to 'apply' they would be the type to rsvp and not show.
Standing in the lobby is simple to fix... half hour rule. Some people are habitual late people.. if you keep it to a half hour of waiting only, people will know they will get left alone while the rest of you go have fun. Works for us! We went snow shoeing the other day and 3 people showed... on our way back, we passed some people who showed an hour late. Tough bananas... come on time or get left behind. :)
Tough love man... tough love.
Heather
sacajawea
Group Organizer
Cambridge, MA
Post #: 192

Trust me, I know what you mean. It's just that bringing it to a discussion won't really help. It will 1) aggravate people who hate drama (me), and 2) alleviate organizers aggravations slightly by allowing people to offer up excuses... but it won't solve the problem.

ah... but it has helped.


  • I learned that some people flake because they don't like events where 70 people say they're going and they may chicken out at the last minute and not think it matters (even tho the organizers know from experience that 12 people will come) - so I'm going to cap the number of participants on all the events I run from now on.
  • I learned that some people use the calendar syncing feature and that they might miss an event start time if an AO writes something in the write-up and doesn't put it in the meetup event start-time so it's in the database
  • I do think some members hadn't thought about it before - and maybe considered meetup to be more of a going.com type thing... vs. a real people doing stuff and meeting similar people.
  • Some more people may have contacted Meetup HQ about bringing "maybe" back.


The people I've met in this group, for the most part, are really really nice interesting people. That's why I keep doing it - even tho my life is full enough already.

And I don't think this conversation has turned into a flame war (yet - there's still time ... LOL)


A former member
Post #: 7
Hi, I think that is a very good question, and on rare occasions I have been guilty. My work encompasses 3 shifts 24/7 at times I have to work some crazy hours, all 3 shifts in a week, ugh can change in a day. That is when I miss an event. But being an organizer in another group, I have heard worked late, family issues, health, transportation, (general malaise : ) all of which are legit reasons. I had an event at an Art Museum I was the only one there 5 no shows ha,ha,ha,....... Thankfully I love Rock & Roll, so I listened to the total song that went with most of the photos. I haven't organized a dinner or lunch event but to reserve a table for twelve and have 3 show up would be upsetting to say the least. Possible Solution.........a check a day or two before the event to those that have replied yes. Example: A Friday event ,on Wednesday send an e-mail "Hi Heather, I look forward to meeting up with you on Friday for a day at the beach : ) I reserved a table for 10 at Chez Freds please let me now if there are changes in your plans so I can adjust the table reservations. Sincerely Scott" What would be cool Heather is if Meet-up had an option where you could as an organizer write one letter with fill ins Example "Hi____, I look forward....." for their first names of those addressed filled in by Meet-ups massive cpu, networked, website that knows all. to make it a more personal e-mail with one Submit button. and with a yes no reply
Scott



I'm sending this email out just to get a sense of why people RSVP "yes" and then don't come to events?



Please respond to the >>>discussion board here<<<. (not on email)



The organizers are going out of their way to include people, and flaking out on them is uncool... it ruins the good vibe of the group.



I'm trying to get into the Minds of the Members to understand why.



I don't want to have to start axing flakes from the group - I'd rather be inclusive... again - keeping a good vibe... so please... PLEASE, explain. Why computer savvy nerds can't remove themselves from the RSVP 'yes' list well before the event if they're not going to make it.



Thanks!

Heather

PS I'm being sincere here - inquiring minds want to know ... please speak up on the discussion board (not on private email to me).

A former member
Post #: 4
I have had to back out of a couple of events, but have always changed my RSVP to a "no" at least 24 hours before the event. Not only do I consider this socially proper for the event organizer and event location which may be counting on a certain number, but it is quite unfair to hold a spot and not show, when there may be others on the waiting list who would have loved to use your space but were not able to.

Yes, we all lead busy lives, I know I do. I am often called to extend my work hours at the last minute, and at times have little notice on required travel related to various projects, but I take it as a sign of respect towards others to either make sure I can attend, or to give proper notice when I can't. Anything less is simply rude.

There will always be a certain amount of individuals who can not make it on time for a number of unavoidable reasons such as traffic, work, etc.. This should only account for a very small percentage point, yet we all see time and time again much larger numbers of members who simply change their minds and never show up. I have seen 25% no shows on a number of events. Personally I would suggest that if a certain member is a no show three times, that they receive a notice, and then be blacklisted for a limited time period. Seems draconian, but people need to be taught to be more responsible it seems.

Scheduling ones calendar is an easy task so there is no excuse for forgetting. We have computers and can set alarms to remind us. Cell phones can handle more and more of the details of our lives and take the errors out of the equation. I see this discussion as a simple wake up call for all members to endeavor to be more socially aware of how your inaction may negatively effect others, and then to take the necessary steps to remedy any problems.

Meetup is a great community of likeminded individuals. As a community we all must do our part to make it work, as it is to our own benefit. Remember: Meetup is what WE make of it. No more, no less.
Kelly S.
keshazel
Winthrop, MA
Post #: 2
I've gone to everything I RSVP'd "Yes" to. But I didn't get to connect with the group once because I was talking to someone. When I turned around the group was gone.
Ida H.
user 13576634
Boston, MA
Post #: 1
Hi Heather,

I'm so sorry that I didn't remove "Yes" from RSVP. I intended to attend the event but I suddenly had a serious issue poping up that night. That issue is continuously making me headache still now. I know it's not a great excuse but it was true. I hope I can join the star gazing event with you again once I clear up this issue. And I won't sign up "Yes" but not showing up again. Thanks for holding these wonderful events.

Best,

Ida
Betsey G.
bgbetsey
Boston, MA
Post #: 15
Heather,

I fully support your concern and encourage people to change their RSVPs to No when they are not going to be able to attend an event that they signed up for. I think its reasonable to expect plans to change, and I also think its reasonable to ask participants to change their RSVPs to No if their plans change for whatever reason, no explanation needed.

Betsey
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