I am beginning to find out why so many Meetup organizers burn out after a while.
I'm getting emails that have me beating my head against the wall. I think it's them, not me. For example, the indy theater we go to has a tiny lobby. My event description for the next movie says:
How to find usSo, today I got an email from some woman asking where we meet, and at what time.
"I'll be in the lobby at 2:55 pm, taking our seats at 3:05 for the 3:15 showing. I am under 5' tall, with glasses and shoulder-length almost-white hair. I'll be next to the hot cider - follow your nose."
Duh? She has RSVP'd for the movie, so I know she saw the event description - it's the only way to RSVP.
Then there was the woman who got all pissed off because she was put on a wait list for the singles' dinner. I had limited the dinner to 12, because more than that at dinner is awkward. At the time she RSVP'd, there were 2 Yes, and 10 Maybe. Meetup considers a Maybe to be a potential Yes, so when the limit is reached, new hopefuls are put on a wait list, and Meetup explains to them at that time that as soon as a Maybe changes to a No, they'll be moved to a Yes, starting from the top of the wait list. That's clear, right?
Not to that woman. She fired off a nasty email to me demanding that I explain why I had limited the reservations to 2 (that's TWO), "... I'm sure [name of restaurant] can handle more than TWO people!" She was not nice about it.
What the hell did she think I was doing?
And more. Between the two groups, I have a total of 45 members, and I'm getting emails like those every other day. I can't imagine what it's like for the organizers of groups with 200-300 members.
Meetup sends out reminders a day or two before an event, reminding you to change your Maybe to a Yes or No, so that the organizer has an accurate count, and so that people on the wait list can go if you can't. I've heard over and over from other organizers that most Maybes don't change their RSVP to Yes or No - they seem to think that Maybe means that they can wander in, or not, whatever they feel like - and the no-show rate even on Yes is about one in three or four.
My 50's singles group description says "Open to the 50-and-over crowd, and anyone else who admires mature minds." I got an email today from a new member who says she's actually 49, and asks if that's ok. She was very polite about it, at least. I told her it's more about interests than about years, so welcome to the group.
So far I've politely answered stupid questions. I am going to have to get tougher. I don't need people around me with empty heads and no consideration for others. Three no-shows, and I'll kick you out. One unchanged Maybe will get from me an explanation of what Meetup means. Another unchanged Maybe after that gets you kicked out. And if anyone else sends me questions to which the answer is in the writeup that they apparently didn't read, I'll just send them the link to the writeup and suggest they read it. If that irks them, fine. I don't need them as much as they might need me.
Please, spare me the idiots. Let them start their own group.