Questions tagged [contributor]

For questions about contributors, and their resources and conditions. Use the collaboration tag if your question is specific to interaction between contributors.

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2 votes
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How do I add contributors to the attribution/ownership part of the CC BY-SA 4.0 licensing statement of my work?

The manuscript I will be working on is an original work that I am currently starting by myself. I am writing the work in LaTex, and the manuscript will have code blocks included within the text. I ...
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20 votes
1 answer
7k views

Is it legal for the author of an open source project to remove history of contributors' commits?

I am new to open-source world. I have contributed some code to an open-source project licensed under GPLv3 but with no contributor agreement license. Is it legal for the original author to upload the ...
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0 votes
1 answer
104 views

How to approach being blocked from a repository you use and contributed to?

What action(s) are recommended in such a situation? Here are some actions I considered, but can't quite figure out if they're optimal/adequate to open source mentality: Forking the repo. I fear I ...
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6 votes
2 answers
199 views

Does contributing to software project make it joint authorship or a collective work?

From the legal point of view there are two types of work done by multiple authors: Joint authorship - when the authors create inseparable work, and the contributions of the authors are interdependent....
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1 vote
0 answers
59 views

In open source software, what is the concept of "ready when it's ready" called?

I remember seeing in several open source projects, particularly smaller ones, that it is discouraged to ask for a timeline or deadline for a particular feature or release, because "it'll be ready ...
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-3 votes
1 answer
68 views

How can I contribute source code to the NTP project?

Can someone please explain how to contribute code to the NTP project? They do have a github repository, but it does not seem very up-to-date, with only one branch. They also have a bitkeeper ...
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  • 95
2 votes
1 answer
105 views

How can I handle minors as contributors?

Ok, firstly, to clarify when I say minor, I mean someone under the age of majority in the US. In this case his father reached out to me regarding a sort of mentor/apprenticeship, so I know I have his ...
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2 votes
1 answer
110 views

Can a LGPL project use contributed code after the original contributor withdrew it and was banned from the project?

"Project A" is released under LGPL ver 2.1 or, at user's discretion, above. This project is part of a bigger platform. "Contributor A" submitted a highly-popular merge request to ...
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1 vote
1 answer
152 views

Do software patches ever inherit the license of the patched project?

This is a follow up question to an earlier question which included a misunderstanding about the nature of the MIT/X license, and has been clarified there. Consider the software project dwm by Suckless....
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2 votes
2 answers
95 views

How should I contribute to fix a possible bug in an open source project?

My distro (Gentoo) has added a patch to GCC that enables an internal macro. I already have enabled that macro in my CFLAGS for a while. I asked them on their IRC about this issue, that now GCC warns ...
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4 votes
1 answer
2k views

What is the difference between contributor, member and collaborator?

Is collaborator just a contributor with "commit-bit" and other privileges or there is more to it?
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  • 419
18 votes
2 answers
4k views

What are the benefits of having a benevolent dictator for life (BDFL) on OSS?

I've seen a number of differing governance styles on open source projects. Some have looser contribution restrictions, with PR approval coming from people who have earned the privilege to do so, ...
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17 votes
6 answers
2k views

Contributing as a company

At my employer we use open source software in our products. Eventually it came to the point that someone in the company fixed an issue in an oss library (a performance thing, not a big deal but ...
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21 votes
5 answers
5k views

How do I become a regular contributor to GitHub FOSS projects?

I've been foraging GitHub and making small one-off contributions to a variety of codebases that interest me. Typically, the projects that I want to contribute to are very large in nature and already ...
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  • 329
6 votes
3 answers
931 views

How to note contributors work with MIT license?

Many of my coding projects are licensed under the MIT license, with my copyright notice at the top: Copyright (C) 2019 David Callanan Anyone making modifications to my code must keep the MIT ...
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2 votes
0 answers
43 views

Giving ownership of a particular area of the project?

(warning: not a license question) As a GSoC mentor, I just received an email from Google about how to retain volunteers, and here is their main tip: The orgs that have been most successful in ...
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1 vote
1 answer
56 views

What is the correct way to receive and give attribution to CC BY-SA asset contributions on a project managed with git?

The Creative Commons website gives this example for giving attribution to an image that was found on a website. For this project, contributors who wish to contribute assets would be sending the assets ...
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  • 111
3 votes
1 answer
171 views

As the owner of a GPLv3 project, what type of restrictions will be placed on me if I accept contributions?

For example, will accepting someone's copyrighted contribution prohibit me from changing the license, accepting donations towards the project, or anything else?
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  • 111
0 votes
1 answer
49 views

Is there any research on, whether the owner of a project making money from it, has any significant effect, on contributions?

I completely know that most of open source projects could be used to make profit and people contribute to them whether the creators are making money from it too or not. My question is this: Does ...
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13 votes
1 answer
1k views

Authors and contributors of forked project

There is an NPM package on github geveloped by the company and licensed under MIT. There is one author listed in package.json file of this package, and there is a company copyright in the license. I'...
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  • 233
28 votes
4 answers
8k views

Is it legal to have the "// (c) 2019 John Smith" header in all files when there are hundreds of contributors?

Companies use headers like // Copyright 2011 The Go Authors. But countless projects with a single maintainer have // Copyright 2011 John Smith even though they have hundreds of contributors, all ...
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  • 485
8 votes
1 answer
136 views

Method for accounting for non-code contributions?

Code contributions are easy to account; one totals commits, reviews, and lines of code in whatever code management system the project uses. However, non-code contributions, particularly in the areas ...
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43 votes
1 answer
8k views

How to deal with contributors who write very bad quality code?

As a maintainer of an open source project which strictly enforces coding style and 100% test coverage, how do I deal with enthusiastic contributors who write terrible looking, untested code (that ...
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  • 615
2 votes
1 answer
292 views

Why contribute to Android if it has an Apache license?

Why do commercial firms contribute to Android open source project if they are not bound to. They can build their own version of android and use it with their products under any license. Samsung uses ...
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  • 43
2 votes
2 answers
187 views

License for open sourcing software with pending patents

I have a pending patent on my Confidence Coin invention. I shared the code publicly on Github (after I started my application), but I have not added a license yet. This software is a blockchain ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
72 views

Should academic arguments be used to convince someone to accept a PR

I contribute to an open source webgl library. A PR has been proposed that solves a problem, introduces a new feature to the library, and places some properties on some class FOO. I didn't like the ...
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  • 189
-2 votes
1 answer
55 views

Can I write on my website and make the code private when the source code is partially copied from an open source GNU GPL V3 project [duplicate]

I've rewritten my personal website using this https://github.com/ptrpov/ptrpov . I've made some significant changes. Like I did on my previously (built from scratch) website, I'd like to add ...
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6 votes
2 answers
180 views

Open-source, when (not) to go on a crusade for a feature?

I've submitted a patch to an open source library that was ignored by the maintainers. Some time after the submittal one of the maintainers implemented a different patch for the same problem. The ...
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  • 189
1 vote
1 answer
68 views

How do you get someone to use or even contribute to your Open Source project?

I'm searching help with a project that is about versioning and querying as well as visualizing of time varying data at the subfile level. It's open source and written in Java, especially well suited ...
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  • 121
1 vote
1 answer
99 views

Finding the optimal number of collaborators for a project

I am finding it very hard to decide if I should offer commit access to the main repository to contributors (make them collaborators) for a project or if I should restrict the access to myself. Given ...
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  • 129
9 votes
1 answer
2k views

GitHub's "Help wanted" label: What if I want help on all issues?

I have a project with 200 open issues (many more closed), and I want to encourage more people to join and fix issues. Recently GitHub is showing me this: Label issues and pull requests for new ...
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2 votes
1 answer
86 views

How can I mitigate or avoid clashes with project maintainers over my bug report(s)?

We keep hearing about the ungrateful job of OSS maintainers and the arrogant users with a huge sense of entitlement demanding slave work for free. While I do sympathise with this sentiment, there are ...
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  • 131
2 votes
1 answer
78 views

What is the term for a user who can merge pull requests?

In an open source project, such as one typically found on GitHub, there are users who can submit pull requests and users who can merge them. It is my understanding that "contributor" is the term for ...
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9 votes
1 answer
2k views

Do Contributors Own Copyright After Sending Contributions?

I have a GitHub repository which its license is GPL. Although of this, in the "about" window of my program, I mentioned that I own the copyright (like this: © My name, 2017). And I added the GPL text ...
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  • 225
2 votes
2 answers
993 views

How do I (a beginner) find a bug in a project on Github?

I'm just getting started with software development and open source and I'm really excited about contributing to a real world project. But, I don't understand how to find bugs in projects as most ...
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  • 129
4 votes
2 answers
322 views

How do I make GPL "or later" contributions to a GPL "only" project?

I am making contributions to a GPLv3-only project. I want to make it clear now that, when the time comes, I am happy for my contributions to be used in any later version. This way, if the maintainers ...
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  • 1,645
-1 votes
1 answer
408 views

Where to find people interested in contributing to an open source project?

A few contributors and I are working on a large-scale Ethereum app called the Decentralized News Network (http://dnn.media), or DNN. The application itself will be entirely open source and we are ...
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4 votes
2 answers
60 views

How to start committing to small opensource Python modules

To become better Python programmer I decided to start contributing Python FOSS. I would like to start by contributing to smaller modules I use myself and this raises a question. Should I just fork ...
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4 votes
1 answer
184 views

Do I still own code I donated to GPL project?

If I contribute code to a project that is under the GPL (or similar), can I still use my code (without any other parts that were contributed by other people) in a closed-source app? If yes, can I also ...
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  • 143
5 votes
1 answer
86 views

How long to wait until the contributors will make a PR

I have some #hacktoberfest issues in my project. All of them are occupied by users but mostly nobody made PR. So should I wait until the end of #hacktoberfest or may I ask them about theirs plans to ...
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  • 153
20 votes
5 answers
3k views

How to prevent contributors from claiming copyright on my LGPL-released software?

I have published the first version of my software on my company's git repo and some other developers outside of our company have shown interest in contributing to our work. We are releasing our ...
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  • 303
5 votes
1 answer
314 views

GitHub workflow and Apache License

The Apache License requires: 4. Redistribution. You may reproduce and distribute copies of the Work or Derivative Works thereof in any medium, with or without modifications, and in Source or Object ...
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  • 372
8 votes
1 answer
443 views

Is a CLA only useful for copyleft licensed?

Is it useful to have a CLA when you e.g. use an MIT license for your project? I am just asking this, because when you use the MIT license you are already granted to sublicense it, so is a CLA ...
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  • 365
6 votes
2 answers
328 views

How does contributing to a FLOSS project work from a legal perspective?

Some points I know: Contributors own copyright over their contributions, which means the author (= the owner of the repo and original author) cannot re-license the code (= change the license of the ...
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  • 365
14 votes
2 answers
1k views

What should I do if maintainers are unresponsive/how can I become a maintainer?

I have just a couple years of experience in software development and in the past few months have been dipping my toes in the water of making open source contributions. It was very exciting when my ...
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  • 243
15 votes
2 answers
1k views

How to accept contributions for AGPL / proprietary dual-licensed projects?

Supposed I have written a software that I offer using a dual-license model, using AGPLv3 as OSS license, and a proprietary one as commercial (closed) license. Now, let's assume somebody wants to ...
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9 votes
2 answers
305 views

How can i grow my open source project?

I have recently started my first open source project. I want people to contribute their ideas and to help grow this project. I don't know how I should spread it. I have a guide on how to contribute, a ...
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4 votes
1 answer
334 views

Contributor License Agreements and anonymous/pseudonymous contributors

If a user contributes under pseudonym or even anonymously, how does this affect CLAs? Does it help anything if he signs a CLA with that pseudonym?
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11 votes
2 answers
488 views

When to list contributors

Many projects have a list of contributors, either as a platform-agnostic AUTHORS text file, or in some way included in the project description metadata of the programming framework in use. When should ...
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  • 372
1 vote
2 answers
100 views

Handling contributions in an opensource project

There is an opensource project that I started some years ago and I still maintain it. This project is licensed under the BSD (3 clause) license and at the moment I am the sole copyright holder and ...
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