BongoHive’s WordPress Meetup — a review

Sara Drawwater
6 June 2013
On the 27th May, WordPress celebrated 10 years of existence. This event was marked by Wordpress meet-ups all over the word. According to, WordPress 10th anniversary parties took place in…

On the 27th May, WordPress celebrated 10 years of existence. This event was marked by Wordpress meet-ups all over the word. According to, WordPress 10th anniversary parties took place in about 639 cities around the world, bringing together more than 5,000 WordPress enthusiasts, including users, developers, and designers.

BongoHive’s WordPress MeetupAlthough blogging is a relatively new concept in Zambia, the past three years have seen a rise in more people blogging, in particular, the younger generation. Not to be left out, Zambia’s Bongo Hive, a technology and innovation hub based in Lusaka, hosted a WordPress meet-up that got together young bloggers and techno savvy youths for an interactive day of fun.

I was both pleasantly surprised, and a little terrified, to receive an invitation to be on the blogger’s panel at this Bongo Hive event. I have been blogging for the Best of Zambia for nearly three years now and recently started my own blog for fun. Although the Best of Zambia is set up on Wordpress, I have not been involved in the technical side, and I was really hoping not to embarrass myself in front of such an obviously well informed audience. I wondered if the Bongo Hive team knew what they were getting themselves into!

The Bongo Hive work spaceIt was also my first time at Bongo Hive. It was love at first sight. They have a super cool working space with interesting artwork and brightly coloured walls. This gives the place a funky yet relaxed vibe. The best part was discovering that they have a GAMES ROOM! Apparently the game room is a place where they can cool off if work gets too stressful. I was taking notes (hint hint Best of Zambia?!)

People and panellistsEveryone at the event was really friendly. I discovered fellow bloggers who were blogging on a wide range of topics from baking, fashion, anime, through to local places to go to. It was an interesting mix of bloggers, and we plan to update this blog with a full list of people whose work you can follow.

The other panellists were Nshinka Lupupa from amaLocal and Martha Shelwolf. Topics included tips to become a better blogger, how to make money from blogs, how to get followers, and much more. After the panel discussions everyone got a chance to mingle. The best part was singing happy birthday to Wordpress as we cut a delicious cake! It was really nice to meet other young bloggers, and to realise that there is a growing group of people with a desire to express their interests, thoughts and views to the world, through their individual blogs. I look forward to another event like this.

I understand that some of the terminology I’ve used may be new to some. If you have never heard of WordPress, or have no idea what a blog is, here are a few definitions. You can also search for the #wp10 hashtag on Twitter to find out more.

What is WordPress?Simply put, WordPress is a free and open source blogging tool and a content management system (CMS) which runs on a Web hosting service. It has many features including a plug-in architecture and a template system.

WordPress is currently the most popular blogging system in use on the Web, powering over 60 million websites worldwide. It was first released on May 27, 2003, by founders Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little.

What is a blog?In simple terms, a blog is a website, where you write stuff on an ongoing basis. New stuff shows up at the top, so your visitors can read what’s new. If they like it, they will comment on it, link to it, share it or even contact you. Your can blog about anything you like. It is whatever you want it to be. There are millions of them, in all shapes and sizes, and there are no real rules.

Credit: Definitions from, and Wikipedia.