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GTUG/GDG FAQ


What’s going on?

We’re proposing that we change the GTUG (Google Technology User Groups) logo and name to the GDG (Google Developer Groups) logo and name. In addition, we’d like to migrate the GTUG chapter directory on gtugs.org to a new GDG chapter directory on developers.google.com/groups.

Below are the new GDG graphics. On the top right is the new GDG program logo. On the top left is a GDG program icon for use where a smaller and/or square proportion graphic is required. Below them is one example of a GDG chapter logo. These graphic assets will have a creative commons license. So, you will be able to create your own custom GDG chapter logos. We are also building a logo generator that creates your chapter logo and icon from a custom background image and GDG name which you provide.


Why??!

  • Google Developers has just officially launched - developers.google.com. This is a major initiative for Google, and not just a facelift for code.google.com. We’re making a statement that developers matter to us. It’s more than just a place for documentation --  we want to foster a community for developers who build on Google’s platforms. The current GTUG community is core to what we want to achieve with Google Developers. We want people to know that you guys are a major component of what we’re doing.
  • We also want to focus on developers. As you know, the team that supports the GTUG program (Developer Relations) is focused on developers. GTUGs have always been about a developer audience, and we’ve gotten lots of feedback from organizers that the “Google Technology User Group” moniker has caused confusion as to who the audience for the group is. For example, people show up expecting to learn how to use Gmail. GTUGs have never been primarily for a consumer audience. GTUGs don’t need to *only* do events targeted at hardcore developers, but the primary audience should be folks who are interested in web and mobile app development. The definition of “developer” in this case can be very general.
  • gtugs.org is not a codebase that’s being maintained, and there are currently no resources to continue development. By moving to developers.google.com, we can leverage the engineering team that’s supporting this site and adding new features.
  • gtugs.org is primarily an administrative site, not a site that drives members to find local chapters. By living on developers.google.com, we hope to give *a lot* more exposure to local chapters and local events. It will also evolve over time as a single place where you can look at your entire developer experience with Google, not just related to user groups.

Why should I switch?

Swag! Just kidding :) Well, we will be making a lot of new GDG swag, but we hope you switch because the “Why’s” above make sense to you.

What does the new logo mean? Where did it come from?

It’s a very strong visual tie-in to the Google brand, and part of the new Google Developers brand. We also like to see it as not just an angle bracket, but a prompt (like a command prompt). Google has provided a bunch of developer tools and platforms, and then it’s up to you guys to create community and build great things.



Does the “Developer” in “GDG” mean that non-coders are excluded from joining GDGs? Why do you hate designers?

Of course not. We don’t hate designers. These groups are about the ecosystem around building web and mobile applications. Designers are certainly an important part of that. The definition of “developer” here can be very broad. What we want to distinguish is between this and the “end user” of these products. Every group is a little different, and if you've been running your GTUG in the spirit of what GTUGs are about, nothing should change for you with the GDG name.

Now that a lot of people have expressed concerns, what are you doing?

We’ve held multiple Hangouts and IRC chat sessions, and will send out a survey to get a sense of what the entire community feels about the change. The aggregate survey data will be shared with everyone. If a majority of chapters don’t want to change, we will work with you guys to come up with a different solution. Please take some time to read through this FAQ, consult with your co-organizers, and make a decision.

What’s the timeline?

The proposed timeline is to launch the new directory as soon as possible and definitely in time for I/O at the end of June. Realistically, those of you opting in to the new directory and/or the GDG logo/name will need some time to prepare for that transition and we will need time to prepare the new directory with your data. Ideally, we collect the data between now and mid April and we launch the directory sometime in May or June.

I really love the GTUG name and our logo. Can we keep them and still get listed in the new directory?

We don’t want to exclude any group that’s an active participant in the community, so we would like to accommodate this. However, if the majority of people keep the GTUG name/logo, it will be quite confusing for the new directory. If most groups don’t want to change to the GDG name/brand, then we will have to re-evaluate the whole proposal.

What’s actually changing?

Not much. The program isn’t changing. The support from Google isn’t changing. We’re proposing that we move the directory and most supporting documentation to developers.google.com. This should give your chapters and events much more exposure. We’re proposing that you change your logo and group name to the GDG brand.

Do we have input on what the new home on developers.google.com will look like?

Yes! There’s no hard roadmap yet, beyond the initial launch of GDG support that will provide parity with what we have today on gtugs.org. We will use the gdgroups project issue tracker to track the feature requests from the community. We will provide regular updates every 2-3 weeks with as much visibility into the roadmap for future features as allowed.

Will there be additional funding for GDGs?

No additional funding is directly tied to this name change. Having said that, a significant event like this is an opportunity to apply for more funding. For example, we can look into getting some funding set aside particularly for groups that have invested their own resources in producing swag and marketing materials with the GTUG brand. I would like to be able to compensate them in order to produce comparable materials with the new GDG brand.

I'm concerned that moving to developers.google.com will make it look like Google is running the groups, and make it tougher to get sponsorships from outside sponsors. 

The messaging will remain the same around GDGs being independently run, and not run by Google employees. "Google" has always been in the name of the group, so hopefully not too much is changing. Other groups such as Adobe User Groups live on official company domains and remain independent. 

Are new GTUGs going to be allowed to be created?

Not as proposed. The new chapter process would be for GDGs on developers.google.com. The community remains the same.

What happens to gtugs.org?

gtugs.org will be maintained as long as we still have operating GTUG chapters. To support existing GTUGs that opt-in to the new GDG logo/name, we will add aliasing support for the gdgroups.org domain. GTUGs that make the switch will be able to keep their site pages and their user accounts and start using the gdgroups.org alias for their sites and user accounts.

Will the legacy of GTUGs be preserved?

Yes. The new home on developers.google.com/groups will explain what GTUGs are and where GDGs came from. All historical events data and chapter creation data that we have will be preserved.

What have we learned?

The community is very large now, and it’s tough to keep something confidential while still getting feedback throughout the process of a large decision like this. We did share this information and get feedback several months ago with groups of organizers over Hangouts in different regions. (The feedback was all mostly positive, and we tried to answer concerns that were brought up at the time.) However, it becomes clear that we need a better process. This is another large topic for discussion, but we should look into having a small steering committee made up of active organizers from around the world.

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