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WordCamp Portland: How Has WordPress Changed Your Life?

WordCamp logoThe agenda of speakers for is out and I’m the keynote speaker. And I need your help.

I will be talking about how is changing lives, not just from the blogging experience but truly changing your life from stem to stern.

WordPress and free blogs give a voice to those who may never have had the chance to express themselves. With WordPress, they have the chance to be heard. I want to honor those people.

WordPress fans are amazingly supportive of each other. There have been a variety of aggregators, directories, Digg-style voting sites for WordPress fans only, forums, and more as WordPress brings people together to collaborate based upon their love of WordPress. Fans are willing to pick WordPress apart and put it back together even stronger. Has your life been changed by being a part of the WordPress Community? I want to honor you.

WordPress allows those with no money and no expertise in web publishing or design to setup a website to promote their opinion, ideas, products, services, and lives, but also works hard for communities such as small towns, member associations, non-profits, political movements, researchers, educators, hobbyists, and families. I want to honor the communities whose lives have been changed by WordPress.

WordPress has turned many fans of web design, development, and blogging into experts. Was your life heading in one direction and then turned into a web-related business through your enthusiasm for WordPress? I want to honor you, too.

To contact me with your “How WordPress has changed my life” stories, you can blog it on your blog and trackback to here (or post a link), write it up with valid contact information and blog URL in the comment form (not the comment box) in this post’s comments, or email me with WordCamp Portland Talk in the subject title. I may include you in my presentation.

WordCamp Portland 2008

September 27, 2008, the place to be will be in Portland, Oregon, for at CubeSpace. Registration is now open and space is limited, so get registered now to guarantee a place in this exciting event.

The list of speakers and topics is exciting and covers a wide spectrum of the needs of WordPress members.

Before dinner, there is an “Ask the Experts” panel with myself, Rick Turoczy, Justin Kistner, and Chris O’Rourke. There will also be rooms available for unconference sessions that pop up through the day’s events.

Advance registration is USD $10 and includes lunch, dinner, WordCamp Portland T-shirt, and door prizes. The price is low thanks to the awesome support of the WordCamp Portland sponsors including CubeSpace PDX, Nemo Design, Silicon Florist, Voce Communications, IvyCat, OurPDX Network, and Hockley Photography. Sponsors are still welcome to join and get exposure to the best in blogging and WordPress.

For more information on , check out their helpful FAQ page.

You can follow WordCamp Portland on Twitter at @wordcampdx, too.

I can’t wait to see you there and I’m looking forward to your stories about how WordPress has changed your life. Who knows, I might select your story to share with the attendees at WordCamp Portland.

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Copyright Lorelle VanFossen, the author of Blogging Tips, What Bloggers Won't Tell You About Blogging.


  1. nakedbones
    Posted August 23, 2008 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

    WordPress i would say hasnt changed my life, but it has made it easier. It gave me the room to empty my mind of the everyday stuff we all go through. Before wordpress i used my energy trying to get the blog first set up, now after the famous five minute install, i have multiple blogs talking about multiple topics and it has only gone to good things…wordpress!…thank you!!

  2. amolpatil2k
    Posted August 23, 2008 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

    Blog posts are generally casually written. Even those who write seriously are sometimes too busy. Naturally we are all gung-ho about WP. But you made it sound like if one doesn’t have WP, one doesn’t have Net. Readers would love to hear more about:

    “There have been a variety of aggregators, directories, Digg-style voting sites for WordPress fans only, forums, and more as WordPress brings people together to collaborate based upon their love of WordPress.”

  3. Posted August 23, 2008 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    @ amolpatil2k:

    I’d like to believe that if one doesn’t have WordPress in their life, they don’t have Net. 😀

    WordPress has changed many people’s lives, including the founder, Matt Mullenweg. With a casual mention of a need to improve his blog program, Mike Little in the UK responded and WordPress was born. Blogs impact our lives in many ways, but I’m looking for people willing to give specific credit to WordPress and its impact on their life. It’s changed many lives, and we want to know how.

    Want to give it a try? Share your story on how WordPress has changed your life.

  4. Posted August 23, 2008 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

    Well I’ve found that now people can ignore what I say online as well as in real life.

    But that’s probably not what you’re looking for.


  5. Posted August 23, 2008 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

    if it wasn’t for wordpress, I would have never got beyond simple loops in php. trying to figure out the code in theme files for the past 3 years taught me enough to write some really useful scripts and if I hadn’t learned that, I would have never been able to write the commentluv plugin.

    it’s also nice to write posts about crap that happens to me! 🙂

  6. Posted August 23, 2008 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

    @ Wayne:

    LOL! Actually, with a blog, people can’t ignore you. Write enough keywords and search terms and someone will find you – hopefully the RIGHT someone. 😀 Too funny.

  7. Posted August 23, 2008 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

    Oh, registration is open? Sweet. *goes to register*

  8. Posted August 23, 2008 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

    @ Viper007Bond:

    I owe you a dozen hugs, so you better register and show up and find me at WordCamp Portland. I’m one of your biggest fans!!! I’ll want our picture together, too. And an autograph!

    I can’t wait to tell everyone that I met the mystery behind viper007bond!

  9. Posted August 23, 2008 at 11:12 pm | Permalink

    for me, wordpress is what the net SHOULD be like, mine was a bloggy tale of woe before wordpress came out.. i hope you publish the stories you get in your blog

  10. Posted August 24, 2008 at 1:16 am | Permalink


    I felt so impressed to write this reply that I fired up Microsoft Office 2007, so that I could at least sound like I know what the hell that it is that I am talking about.

    Honestly, if I had to sit here and tell you all the way that Blogging and yes, wordpress have changed my life. This comment would be four pages long. However, I will try to make this as brief as I can.

    I came upon this scene of Blogger back in February of 2006. I had just walked out of a Church, after being royally stabbed in the back. I knew it was time for a change in direct. I had seen that Google had bought this company named “Blogspot” out. I, at first, thought that blogging was nothing more than a childish novelty, a fad, as it were. I was done with Church, so, I thought I would get into the Political scene, seeing the current Presidential Administration was taking this country down the toilet. I discovered by total accident. I remember that I had originally registered a “Christian” blog, but I never did anything with it. Therefore, I deleted it, and ended up changing my e-mail address.

    I ended up registering an account with under the new e-mail address. I then created a Blog by the name of “The Populist.” I drew my inspiration from Lou Dobbs. I was considered at the time, a left of center Blogger. I was new; I made a ton of stupid mistakes. Including a few that I am quite frankly, ashamed to admit.
    My politics and feelings about the Political “Left” have changed quite a bit. I am now, essentially a “Right of Center” blogger.

    How has wordpress and Blogging changed my life? WordPress and Blogging, along with my personal situation, here have driven me back to the thing that I used to enjoy as a young boy, writing. I am told that as a very young man, although I do not remember much of it, I used to write some amazing stories and my teachers were quite impressed with my abilities. It does run in the family, my mother also wrote as young woman herself.

    I now have a domain of my own, hosted by a friend of mine, who is essentially doing me a big favor. I continue to write, criticize the abject stupidity in Washington D.C. and at the same time, criticizing the far left and their communist stupidity as well.

    WordPress has been there, all along, making it all possibly. For this I am eternally grateful to Matt and the entire wordpress team for keep opinionated people and self proclaimed political pundits like me in business.

    With warm regards,

    -Chuck Adkins

  11. Posted August 24, 2008 at 1:19 am | Permalink

    It’s too bad I cannot edit my comments, I just spotted two huge honkin’ typos. 🙄

    anyhow, I think you got my point. 😀


    P.S if you were on hosted wordpress, you could add the plug in! 😉 😛

  12. Posted August 24, 2008 at 1:21 am | Permalink

    Make that three. 🙄

  13. Posted August 24, 2008 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    Cool, a WordPress camp within driving distance for me! I’m marking it on the calendar and will try to bring a friend. Thanks for the heads up on this one, Lorelle.

  14. Posted August 24, 2008 at 8:39 am | Permalink

    @ Elaine:

    I will be featuring many of the stories here, don’t worry. But they will be better in person. 😀

  15. Posted August 24, 2008 at 8:42 am | Permalink

    God i love wordpress, just thought id give my five cents 😉

  16. amolpatil2k
    Posted August 24, 2008 at 10:20 am | Permalink

    WP hasn’t CHANGED my life. If I wanted to play to the gallery, probably I’d try to weave a story to that effect. The simple reason is that a Blog is a powerful construct for a web presence and WordPress has a stranglehold on this construct.

  17. Ron
    Posted August 24, 2008 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

    After upgrading from 2.2.1 to 2.6, WordPress has certainly made my experience more frustrating — my columns no longer line up, my categories have disappeared, and no solutions are on the forums. ::: sigh :::

  18. Posted August 24, 2008 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

    @ Ron:

    The move from 2.3 to 2.5 was a big one for WordPress Themes. They needed to be prepared in advance. This information was publicized and there was a ton of answer on the forums – but that is not what I’m asking about.

    We’re focusing on how WordPress, as a blog platform, has changed your life and helped you make a different in the lives of yourself and others. WordPress is a vehicle, and it’s up to you to drive it. 😀

  19. Posted August 24, 2008 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

    Hi Lorelle,

    I’m a list person so I’m going to draw one up and share with you the “10 ways that WordPress has changed my life”…

    1) It’s the last thing I think about before going to sleep and the 1st thing on my mind when I wake up of a morning.

    2) My sleeping patterns (or non sleeping patterns) have changed drastically – I now have to force myself to go to bed of an evening (or early morning) but getting out of bed has never been easier! (See #1).

    2) WP has given me the tools to extend and expand the way that I share my uniqueness as a human being and individuality with the world.

    3) I have lost interest in going to the rugby on Sundays and would much rather stay home and “WordPress”. (Papua New Rugby is a must by the way).

    4) It’s the highest my ISP and phone bill have ever been. (In Papua New Guinea dialup and timed calls remain the primary means of connecting to the Internet.

    5) WordPress has allowed me to create websites using a blogging framework. (See website for Goroka General Hospital at

    6) Unfortunately, I have lost interest in sex. (My partner is starting to wander what the heck is going on and thinks I might be seeing another woman!).

    7) I have started to learn CSS and PHP allowing me to further customise and enhance the experience of my reader.

    8) I used to think that SEO was an acronym for a company executive.

    9) It’s now only a matter of time before I develop my 1st WP plugin or WP theme (need to learn some more CSS and PHP first) and have started to question why we only have 24 hours in a day!

    10) Have started to experience envy towards folks with easy access to WordCamp gatherings. I thought of perhaps organising a Papua New Guinea WordCamp but to the best of my knowledge there are no other self hosted WordPress bloggers in this part of the Pacific.

    Warmest regards all the way from Goroka in the Highlands of Papua New Guinea.


  20. Posted August 24, 2008 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

    @ Robert@PNG:

    Cute. That’s great. As for a WordCamp Papua New Guinea, there is no rule that says a WordCamp event must have hundreds of attendees. Some start with five or six. And bloggers are welcome as much as

    You never know. That might be a WordPress life-changing event. Find out who else is blogging with WordPress around you. I bet there are more than you think. 😀

  21. nakedbones
    Posted August 25, 2008 at 4:08 am | Permalink

    Instead of writing a comment i went one better and wrote a blog post about this topic.

  22. Posted August 25, 2008 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

    @ Lorelle:

    Haha, well I’m quite honored! I’ll make sure to find you. 🙂

  23. JR.Odin
    Posted August 27, 2008 at 5:09 am | Permalink

    oh!! good

  24. Posted September 13, 2008 at 4:30 am | Permalink

    WordPress is really changing normal lives rapidly because it provides a good opportunity for those who does not have chance to express them, so with the medium of these sources they can easily express themsolves.
    Arden Kaisman

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  1. […] WordCamp Portland: How Has WordPress Changed Your Life? « Lorelle on WordPress Lorelle VanFossen writes “The agenda of speakers for WordCamp Portland is out and I’m the keynote speaker. And I need your help. I will be talking about how WordPress is changing lives, not just from the blogging experience but truly changing your life from stem to stern. WordPress and free blogs give a voice to those who may never have had the chance to express themselves. With WordPress, they have the chance to be heard. I want to honor those people.” […]

  2. […] on WordPress is currently doing a “How has WordPress changed your life” segment and has asked for readers to contribute a short story which she may or may not […]

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