Mike McQuaid mikemcquaid.com

"This is why people don’t contribute to your open source project"  ↦

Do you want more contributors and maintainers on your project? Mike McQuaid, maintainer of Homebrew (macOS package manager), writes on his personal blog:

Here are a a few guidelines in thinking about this:

  • Most contributors were users first (“scratching your own itch”: most people start contributing to an open source project to solve a problem they are experiencing)
  • Most maintainers were a contributor and user first (people don’t just jump into maintaining a project without helping to build it first)
  • Maintainers cannot do a good job without remaining a user (to maintain context, passion and empathy)

Combined, these start to look a bit like a sales funnel. People have to travel through each stage and there’s a fairly hefty drop-off at each one.

Also check out ~> Open source maintainers owe you nothing


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