contributors

Is training to become a better contributor worth considering?

lightning in a bottle

Loïc Dachary, a Free Software developer and activist and the President of the Free Software Foundation in France, noticed something while attending the OpenStack summit in April 2012.

As corporations joined the project and assigned developers to work on OpenStack, all of them knew about Free Software and some even contributed to it from time to time. They were all surfing the wave of the Cloud and it was an unprecedented opportunity for them to make a difference, to share their work on a daily basis.

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Community spotlight: Barry Peddycord III, PhD student in computer science

Community spotlight

Meet Barry Peddycord III, a PhD student in computer science at North Carolina State University. He wishes academia were more open so work like his can reach as many audiences as possible. Barry's insightful comments on articles across many opensource.com groups enhance our conversations about the open source way. You can read his thoughts on open education at his blog.

Community is very important to opensource.com. We want to continue to recognize community members who contribute to the site by doing things other than writing articles–things like rating articles and commenting on them, voting in polls, and sharing our collective work on social media. We hope you enjoy getting to know Barry. » Read more

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Beta points and badge system

Today you might have noticed a few new things on opensource.com, like badges appearing under users in the comments. We're launching a points and badge system (in beta) for the site. We're still ironing out some bugs, but here's a little more about the system and why we're doing it.

Meritocracy is at the heart of every open source project, including this one. The people who work the hardest and care the most end up running the show. Our new badge and points system will highlight the various ways that each of us participates on opensource.com.

Every day people visit the site, rate content, add comments, and share their favorite posts across social media. And they do it because they care about the ideas and information they find on opensource.com.

But some people care just a little big more, and we want to recognize and build on their contributions. » Read more

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Do you aspire to build a brand community or a community brand?

In my day job at New Kind, I spend quite a bit of my time working on brand-related assignments, particularly for organizations interested in community-based approaches to building their brands. » Read more

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Trust: the catalyst of the open source way

Let's face it. There are tons of projects out there in the world being run the open source way today. While the great ones can accomplish unbelievable things, the bad ones, even the average ones, often fail to achieve their goals.

In many cases, the failed projects still used many of the tenets of the open source way, transparency, collaboration, meritocracy, etc. So why did they fail? » Read more

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Why the open source way trumps the crowdsourcing way

A while back, I wrote an article about why the term crowdsourcing bugs me. Another thing that drives me nuts? When people confuse crowdsourcing and open source. My friend David Burney wrote an interesting post on this subject a while back highlighting the differences.  » Read more

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Love, hate, and the Wikipedia contributor culture problem

Last fall, a group of researchers at the Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) released a study showing an abrupt leveling off in the number of editors and edits to Wikipedia, starting in about 2007. » Read more

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A handbook for the open source way, written the open source way

Remember the Seinfeld episode where Kramer had the idea to make a coffee table book about coffee tables? I always thought that was a pretty elegant idea. Well, a few months ago, some of the smart folks on Red Hat's community architecture team had a similarly elegant idea:

Write a book about building community the open source way... and write it with a community, the open source way. Meaning, open the text up, allow interested users to contribute, and see what happens.

Brilliant. » Read more

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2 reasons why the term "crowdsourcing" bugs me

Interesting article in Forbes about the way Threadless, the awesome t-shirt company, thinks about community-building. For those of you who aren't familiar with Threadless, they do about $30 million in revenues with a unique cultural/business model that merges a community of t-shirt creators and consumers into one happy family (you can read more about them in the Forbes article). » Read more

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