FOSS Sustainability


Overview of FOSS/Open Source Sustainability and Pay The Maintainers movements.

View the Project on GitHub ShaneCurcuru/fosssustainability


Contributors volunteer their efforts directly to a project.

Relationships With Other Aspects

Vocabularies used: corporate, policy,
Timescale aspect changes: immediate,
Scope of aspect: very small,
Relationship with other aspects: contributor, maintainer,
Primary focus: project

Every individual who wants to contribute to open source is a contributor. Their motivations are infinite, but as a whole population many contributors want to understand how they can get paid on a personal level for their work.

Sustainability Aspects

Contributors ask: What kinds of opportunities are there for me to get paid for working in open source?

Contributors often don’t know about sustainability; other than looking for a job at a FOSS-friendly company, most won’t have experience with how to get paid independently or how to market themselves.

Contributors may not care about the ecosystem or public policy around open source; they primarily want to see how to make a living.

Contributors - Individuals Who Contribute

Contributors are the lifeblood of any project. Contributors submit new code, designs, or other work, patch bugs, write or edit documentation, and answer questions about projects. Contributors may have some smaller roles in strategic project governance, but not the responsibility of a maintainer or PMC member. Contributors come from around the world and from every kind of person.

Every individual who directly or indirectly submits work (code, docs, whatever) to a project can be thought of as a contributor. Many contributors come and go within one or more projects. Some contributors make a habit of contributing to specific projects on a regular basis. Regular contributors are often made into committers, or people with direct write access to project resources.

Cultivating a steady flow of new contributors to a project is a key factor in individual project sustainability.

Ideas and References

Other Reference Links

Tags: Individual | Governance