The WiscWeb team wants to make all users aware of an important update related to events management within the service, particularly in relation to the Events Calendar plugin:
Events Calendar released version 6.0 in fall of 2022. Our team has tested this and subsequent versions in our Dev and QA environments and have determined that it cannot be pushed out to production based on these observations:
- Subject to break the multisite network and/or individual sites
- Concerning errors in our error logs
- Cannot activate on new sites
We have made the very difficult decision to discontinue our use of this plugin and are currently assessing alternatives.
A full explanation of this change is included in our March 9 Lunch and Learn recording and the presentation slides.
We conducted an audit of sites with the Events Calendar plugin active, to better understand current needs.
Here are the results of that study:
Total Sites with EC Active: 293 (of 1,800+ total sites)
No events added: 32 (11%)
No events in past 6 months: 120 (40%)
Simple complexity: 96 (33%)
Medium complexity: 30 (10%)
Difficult complexity: 15 (5%)
Based on this quantitative data, we are able to surmise:
- More than half of sites that had the plugin enabled weren’t actively using it or had absolutely no events created.
- Most groups have very simple events needs like date, location, a simple description, and maybe a map.
- A handful of groups need a little more. This would be things like a full page of details about an event, event categories, multiple images, etc.
- Based on our feature requests, we have also identified two more needs that weren’t articulated in the usage data:
- Groups wish to share events between sites
- Groups want some sort of event registration option
Our team has conducted a thorough review of options and do not believe there is a vendor plugin on the market that we feel comfortable supporting.
At this time, our team is currently considering the following alternatives to Events Calendar:
- Google Calendar
- A simple custom post type plugin built in-house
All three options would provide a way to add simple info like an event title, description, date/time, hyperlinks, etc.
We wish to provide a comparison chart to further break-down abilities based on the most requested features:
|Include Images||Set Categories||Add Buttons||Create Recurring Events||Share Events Between Sites||Share Calendar View|
|Custom Post Type Plugin||✓||✓||✓|
We are interested in learning more about user needs, to supplement the quantitative data that we already collected.
If you have events management needs, please consider filling out our events management survey by Friday, March 31, 2023.
WiscWeb will consolidate feedback and make a decision for next steps sometime in April 2023.