Article: What motivates open source software contributors?

Free, Libre, Open Software, Open Source

What motivates open source software contributors?

New study finds people’s reasons for contributing have changed since the early 2000s. The reasons people contribute to free and open source (FOSS) projects has been a topic of much interest. However, the research on this topic dates back 10 or more years, and much has changed in the world since then. This article shares seven insights from a recent research study that revisited old motivation studies and asked open source contributors what motivates them today.

These insights can be used by open source community managers who want to grow a community, organizations that want to understand how community members behave, or anyone working with others in open source. Understanding what motivates today’s contributors helps us make impactful decisions.

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