The prose on the SourceCred landing page is quite outdated, and focuses SourceCred narrowly on attributing cred within open-source projects, rather than on the broader scope of recognizing people for contributions to communities generally.
I’ve taken a stab at re-writing the intro prose to reflect the narrative we were developing together at the Odyssey hackathon. Please let me know what you think!
SourceCred is a tool that enables communities to recognize and reward the people that contribute to them. SourceCred does this by mapping out the network of contributions that make up a project, and then assigning every contributor a score, called ‘cred’, based on how their work was connected to the values and priorities of the community.
As an example, imagine that you’re part of a community building an open-source software project (like SourceCred itself). There are lots of kinds of contributions that people make:
- welcoming new members on the forums,
- filing helpful bug reports,
- designing accessible user interfaces,
- implementing new features,
- giving presentations,
- and more.
Right now, it’s hard to keep track of all this work, with the result that many people get overlooked. Going unrecognized for valuable work is disappointing and demotivating.
SourceCred fixes that by creating a consistent framework for recognizing and valuing contributions. Data about contributions is imported automatically from sources like GitHub, Git, or online forums, and then augmented with manually-entered contributions. These contributions are organized into a network, and the PageRank algorithm assigns a score to every contribution. We can even compute cred relative to particular values or priorities; for example, one person might have a lot of “design cred”, another might earn plenty of “emotional labor cred”.
SourceCred enables communities to clearly communicate what they value and prioritize, and to give everyone feedback about how they’re helping accomplish their shared goals. Since SourceCred assigns quantitative scores, it can also be used to transparently split rewards (like money) between community members.
SourceCred is a young technology and community. Currently, we’re focused on dogfooding SourceCred within the SourceCred community; we want to prove that cred can help support a thriving open-source project. You can see the current cred within SourceCred here; bear in mind that it’s still a first draft. (We’re aren’t yet recognizing lots of important contributions, like design work, or posts on the forum.)