A low-maintenance bounty program


Something that we've been thinking a lot about lately how managing a bounty program increases the work of the maintainers of a project, who might already be struggling with their responsibilities with the project. Isn't it crazy that sponsorships, which one might expect to play a key role in helping with the project sustainability, might in fact have a negative impact in it?

At Tuist, this is how we managed our bounty program:

  • We created a GitHub discussion were we'd list all the issues that are part of the bounty program along with the amount associated to it. This was a bit of a manual work, plus we didn't really have an established process for determining which issues should be included in the program.
  • When someone addressed an issue, they mentioned it in the PR, and someone from the core team had to sponsor them either via GitHub Sponsors or Open Collective. Once again, this was a manual work that someone had to do every time.

We dream with that manual work being away and having a process that ensures that bounty developers are working on the most relevant issues in our backlog.

We truly hope Polar helps us have a more automated bounty program that narrows the breath of work allowing us to focus on other important work of managing open source.