Increasingly, security vulnerabilities like Log4Shell are drawing more attention to open source software maintenance, and governments and industries around the world are making open source security a top priority. This increased attention has led to maintainers being asked to do more and more work.
Yet most maintainers are volunteers. A recent Tidelift maintainer survey showed that 60% of maintainers are unpaid hobbyists. And countering the regularly cited theory that most maintainers prefer to work on open source as an unpaid hobby, our survey found that 77% of the maintainers who are not paid would prefer to get paid.
The crisis of overworked open source maintainers being asked to do more isn’t just wrong, it is dangerous.
At Tidelift, we want to change this. We see a world where open source maintainers get full recognition and compensation for the value they create. We see a world where maintainers thrive.
"There are a vast array of open source projects out there, and not all of them are at the same quality level. Tidelift helps people make a more educated decision when evaluating an open source project. This helps alleviate the pressure—and stress—of choosing the best components and libraries when a big, corporate project depends on it."
"It’s a pretty simple concept: maintainers get paid and the organizations who use their projects get the support and dependability they need in return. I believe that this model helps us move closer to a future where many more maintainers like me can afford to work on their projects full time."
At Tidelift, we call our maintainer partners "lifters," in the spirit of the aphorism "a rising tide lifts all boats", to honor the critical role they play in making open source work better for everyone
As a lifter you will be responsible for ensuring your open source package(s) meets pre-defined expectations around security, maintenance, and licensing.
More information about lifter responsibilities can be found on the lifter tasks page.
Join the hundreds of maintainers already partnered with Tidelift. See if your package is eligible for income on Tidelift and apply to lift your package, join our Slack community, or contact us directly at email@example.com. We look forward to partnering with you!