Getting started contributing

So you are new to Etherpad or contributing to Open source and you want to know how you can get started helping out the Etherpad foundation spread the goodness that is Etherpad. We’re always looking for new people to join our fellow Etherpadians, we have one motto of “Ask forgiveness not permission” so get started doing your thing and don’t be scared of doing something wrong.

Here are some things we need help with..

Writing blog posts

Knowledge required: General Etherpad knowledge, good writing skills and experience with publishing content on WordPress
Getting started: Draft a blog post and email it through, if we like it we will publish it on Alternatively self publish on your own blog and bump us and we will help promote it. If we’re comfortable after a few posts with you we will give you author access on

Engaging with potential Etherpadians on Social Media

Knowledge required: General Etherpad knowledge and experience with Social Media platform strategies such as Faceache, Reddit and Twitter
Getting started: Scan Social networks for people chatting about Etherpad or Etherpad alternatives and engage with them to inform them of what they can/can’t use Etherpad for and how they can leverage Etherpad to improve their life, forever.. Create new conversations with the goal to enlighten people to how awesome Etherpad.

Answering questions

Knowledge required: General Etherpad knowledge and experience with QA platforms such as Quora & stack overflow
Getting started: Hunt down people questions being asked about Etherpad and provide a clear answer to their question. Earn badges, free princesses.

Running Tests and replicating issues

Knowledge required: General Etherpad knowledge, Basic Github user experience and git experience
Getting started: Find open issues and try to replicate them on your own Etherpad instance. Update the issue to confirm the issue if the issue does exist. You may be asked by a code contributor to test a fix too, for this you may need basic git experience but it’s not required.

Creating tutorial and demonstration videos

Knowledge required: General Etherpad knowledge and experience with video publishing platforms such as Vimeo or that one that got f***** in the a** by Google+
Getting started: Review existing tutorial videos, find some ones we’re missing, create some video guides and upload them to your favorite video sharing website. We don’t have an official channel or anything fancy, feel free to make one!

Writing plugins

Knowledge required: General Etherpad Knowledge, Javascript, jQuery, NodeJS, Npm and Git experience
Getting started: Look at some example plugins and modify them to do what you want. Look at the open plugin requests on Github and the Etherpad feedback/voting platform. Once you are happy with your plugin publish it to npm and ask the mailing list for feedback.

Contributing code

Knowledge required: Javascript, NodeJS, Git
Getting started: Read the wiki articles and contributing guidelines first, then look through the open issues and submit pull requests for anything you can resolve.

Creating marketing tools such as infographics

Knowledge required: General Etherpad knowledge and experience with image manipulation packages such as Gimp
Getting started: Create some marketing material such as memes from the 90s, put it online and send it through to us and we will spam it about on social media and other places.

Providing Translations

Knowledge required: Fluent in more than one language, minor experience with using the TranslateWiki service
Getting started: Find something that is missing a translation and add it on our translation page.

Writing Tests

Knowledge required: General Etherpad Knowledge, Javascript, jQuery, Travis, Mocha, NodeJS and Git experience
Getting started: Look at the frontend tests that already exist and search through the issues and wiki for outstanding issues

Security testing

Knowledge required: General security / pen testing knowledge and ideally general Javascript, HTTP and Git knowledge.
Getting started: Install Etherpad locally and attack it, patch Etherpad Develop Branch and submit a pull request with a fix then let us know before going public as per a relatively sensible security disclosure policy.

Releasing new versions of Etherpad

Knowledge required: Basic writing experience, some windows experience, basic Etherpad experience, git experience.
Getting started: Create a release pull request following our release guide.

General Foundation Admin

Knowledge required: General Etherpad knowledge and Basic Admin knowledge
Getting started: Contact us and when a general inquiry/request hits our inbox we will forward it through to you to forward through to the correct party.

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