GitHub launches Sponsors program to help finance open source developers

Written about 1 year ago by IanDorfman

GitHub has announced a new initiative to help finance open source software developers on the site. This program, GitHub Sponsors, works as a sort of open source software-focused alternative to crowdfunding sites like Small Patreon iconPatreon in that other users on the site pitch in what they can to help support their fellow creators financially.

Further detailing the program via a post on GitHub's official blog, the company's Open Source Project Manager Devon Zuegel described why they're launching this initiative and what GitHub is bringing to the table that other crowdfunding sites are not.

Zuegel stated that, for the first year of a developer's membership in GitHub Sponsors, GitHub will match each contribution up to $5,000. In addition to this, a list of features to separate GitHub Sponsors from the competition was shown, including the following points:

• Zero fees: GitHub will not charge any fees for using their Sponsors platform to finance developers, with all payment processing fees also being waived for the first 12 months.
• A global team: Sponsors will be supported in every country that supports GitHub
• All contributors welcome: Not just coders, but those who write documentation, lead, mentor, design, and contribute to any other aspect of open source development are eligible
• One more way to contribute
• Native to your GitHub workflow

Zuegel concluded the blog post by stating that, even though GitHub Sponsors is launching relatively small, they'll be actively listening to feedback and have created an advisory panel "to explore the operational challenges faced by open source teams."

Further coverage:
The GitHub Blog
TechCrunch
ZDNet