Meetup.com launched a drastic and much-hyped redesign last week, and as with many sites that serve an extremely dedicated group of users, some Meetup power users were pissed off. And they were loud about it.
The major changes affected the way Meetup pages look and made it possible for non-organizers to schedule meetups. Some of the changes made organizers feel like Meetup had taken some of the control over the groups they had carefully cultivated, sometimes for years. Users complained that the copy Meetup inserted into the welcome email (“Don’t flake”) was rude and the new interface was harder for organizers who don’t know HTML, but they were most upset about the fact that they weren’t consulted or warned that changes were coming.
Although the official response was at first slow, Meetup is obviously scrambling to address the concerns coming from its most passionate users. Chief Technology Officer Greg Whalin just put up a long post apologizing for the missteps, admitting some mistakes (“We brought back roles and titles to the RSVP list. These should never have been removed, and honestly, it was a bit of an oversight that they disappeared”), detailing some of the many corrections Meetup made to its comprehensive redesign and outlining some of the changes the company is still working on. Additionally, Meetup plans to keep its users in the loop on changes going forward on the blog and in the Meetup forum.
“Thanks for all your feedback,” he wrote. “I’m sorry that the last week was bumpy and painful for some folks out there. That was certainly not our intention, and we are doing everything we can as quickly as we can to help resolve some of this pain.”
Can we just say we totally called this?
ajeffries [at] observer.com | @adrjeffries