In the past couple of weeks there has been much talk about WordPress.org’s Five for the Future program. The discussion is long and has many ramifications and you can read this post from The WP Minute if you want to learn more.
Among the Twitter conversations and Post Status’ Slack I read about people only being able to contribute 1 to 2 hrs per week and that does not equal to the 5% of much. Let’s get back to what Josepha Haden Chomphosy said in WP’s podcast: Five for the Future’s True Intentions.
Let’s put things in perspective
Of course it is aspirational. And those 1 to 2 hours per week are needed in the WordPress project more than you think. That amount of time will have great impact in the work we do.
WordPress.org is not only core and it is not all about the code. There are many other things we do to maintain the project alive. So perhaps we have failed at letting new contributors know what they can do with their minimal time.
See, we are so happy when new contributors join us that we welcome them with open arms and give them all the freedom to contribute as they wish. But the WordPress project in itself is huge and it can be a daunting rabbit hole when you have no guidance.
I think, it is time we cut their wings a bit and start pointing some fingers, not at people but at tasks.
Make my contribution count
I have gathered a list of tasks anyone can contribute in less than 3 hours per week to the WordPress Project. One caveat, I do not contribute to every WordPress team, so I am only mentioning the ones that I am aware of. These are smaller tasks but in any way less important.
The docs team meets weekly, twice a month there is a meeting to update or discuss specific projects/collaborations. The other two weeks is issue triage for documentation. The team meets on Tuesdays at 14:00 UTC. For more information checkout this post about Onboarding to the Documentation team.
- Review old and broken links in documentation
- Review code in documentation
- Add new screenshots to articles (some features change after WordPress version is updated)
- Write an article for either end user or developers documentation
- Take notes during meetings
The training team is creating lessons and tutorials for WordPress. No need to be certified trainer to help out as there also tasks that would support the team. The team meets on specific dates and times for Americas/EMEA and APAC teams. Attending a team meeting and reading the handbook are the best ways to get started.
- Take notes during meetings.
- Create lesson plans.
- Review lesson plans – grammar, spelling, punctuation.
- Help test the lessons before launching.
- Audit the content of the lessons.
- Are you a non-English speaker? help translate a lesson.
Core is broken into smaller teams. There is no best place to start, I suggest find what interests you and go from there. Attending a dev chat is also a great way to familiarize yourself with how the team works.
- Participate in bug scrubs for WP versions or components.
- Checkout the Good First Bugs report and create or test patches and comment on Trac tickets.
- Take notes during Dev chat. Meetings are every Wednesday at 20:00 UTC
Test team is busy now with Full Site Editor and have been working on feature and block testing. We recently had a usability testing session that lasted about 20 minutes. The team doesn’t meet regularly but you can drop in the Slack channel with questions or feedback anytime.
- Participate in an FSE testing call.
- Test blocks or FSE features and report results, issues and bugs in the teams Slack channel.
Although not all 21 make teams in WordPress.org are looking for contributors with short amount of time available, there will always be a team or two who will mostly appreciate your contribution. And as I say before, it is not an exhaustive list and I would love to add more items to the list in the future.