Do you know the open source contribution etiquette? (aka Don't re-order my house when fixing my tap)

Last updated by Brook Jeynes [SSW] 6 months ago.See history

If you get a tradesman in to fix your tap, and on the way to the kitchen he sees your bookcase is messy and re-order it for you... you probably wouldn't be very happy.

When you contribute to open source projects it is great to fix bugs and contribute features, but it is essential to be respectful of the people that came before you, and possibly have invested lots of time in putting everything where it currently is.

etiquette bad
Figure: Bad example - Bad open source contribution involves gratuitous refactoring, re-organisation of files and classes, changing of formatting beyond those used throughout the rest of the project

etiquette good
Figure: Good example - Contributors review the for the project and work within the guidelines provided, they follow existing coding styles and architecture and if large refactoring or changes are required communicate with the community and the core contributors

This issue is described beautifully here Open Source Contribution Etiquette by Miguel de Icaza.

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