Contribution Time, Sponsored, and Teams Fields Added to User Profiles

A new section named Contribution has been added to user profiles. This section contains fields that enable users to share how much time they contribute to WordPress on a weekly basis, which teams they contribute to, and whether or not those contributions are sponsored.

New User Profile Fields

Each field is optional and will only appear if the Hours and Teams fields are filled in. The sponsored tag will only appear next to the Contributions heading if you answer Yes to being sponsored and the other fields are filled in.

Andrea Middleton describes these fields as a step towards a possible version one of the Five for the Future program that was published last year.

“I think it will also help with transparency, and might facilitate how teams set internal expectations for how much time different contributors might have to spend on a project or ongoing task,” she said.

In addition to the profile fields, the official WordPress Jobs Board has also been updated to include a new Contributor position. The goal is to make it easier for companies to find and hire people interested in becoming sponsored contributors.

These changes are the first iteration with plans to enhance them in the future. If you have any suggestions or ideas on improving these fields, you’re encouraged to leave a comment.

One question I have regarding potential additions is whether or not it makes sense to provide a text field where users can name the company that is sponsoring them. This may aid in transparency and avoiding conflicts of interests.

On the other side of the coin, does it make sense for the company’s name to be public information, or should contributors only share that information with team leads or reps on a 1-on-1 basis?

I feel as though knowing someone’s contributions are sponsored is only half of the equation. Without knowing who the sponsor is, that information is practically irrelevant.


9 responses to “Contribution Time, Sponsored, and Teams Fields Added to User Profiles”

  1. Happy to see this, although it’s not structural. WP plugins and themes have donate buttons for years, right. We all know that’s not paying the butter. So, curious to see how this goes. I also believe the connection company and profile must be made. Not only for transparency, but also for 2 others facts: sponsored companies wants/needs to be seen + seeing giving makes you giving.
    So, a sponsor company archive page is transparant, nice for that company and is a shoutout to competitors and other companies to sponsor too.
    Thank you, Community Team! :-)

  2. Although I’ve been involved with WordPress for 16-years, I don’t specifically foray into the world of core WordPress development all that much, mainly because I’m focused on client work. I’m unclear on the “Contributor” category added to the official WordPress jobs board. And, what a “sponsored Contributor” is.

    There’s already “Plugin Development” and “Theme Customization,” so can someone explain further what would be an example post to the Contributor category on the Jobs board. What is a “sponsored Contributor?”

    • What is a “sponsored Contributor?”

      Good question! Thanks for asking it. To my mind, a “sponsored contributor” is someone who is paid (by someone else, or via their own company maybe) to work on any of the work that is coordinated or conducted by one of the contributor teams. Does that help? :)

  3. One question I have regarding potential additions is whether or not it makes sense to provide a text field where users can name the company that is sponsoring them. This may aid in transparency and avoiding conflicts of interests.

    I imagine that they don’t want us to know the name of the company most of the contributions come from right now. It doesn’t take a lot of research to figure out which one it is…

    • Because each profile already has a “Company” field available, it didn’t seem urgent to add a “sponsored by XYZ company” field to the profile, though I agree with Jeff that it will help with transparency. I commented on the original post that:

      I hope to post a proposal for next steps for the Five for the Future pledge program in mid-July, which will include a way to indicate the company sponsoring the contributor’s work that can be confirmed by a company representative (as long as that company has filled out a pledge). I don’t think we’ll need to require a Five for the Future pledge in order to name the sponsoring company, though — it should be possible to indicate via design elements if the cited company is part of the pledge program or not.

      • I don’t understand the reasoning behind the “Company” field acting as the implied indication of who sponsors the contributor. The company may not in fact sponsor the contributor’s time. The company may be entirely outside the WP and software development ecosystem. If there is a sponsor, it may be a non-employer such as grant funding, academia, or a research project – all scenarios which absolutely require public transparency.

        It feels as if the priority here is to onboard companies into signing up for Five for the Future, which is an ecosystem-specific initiative not applicable to many contributor situations, rather than provide clarity on the financial health of the contributor base. I certainly don’t want to see the non-ecosystem companies I work with depicted in a bad light as “non-supporters” for not participating in an initiative not meant for them.

  4. I was expecting to see a screenshot of these new profile fields actually on someone’s profile to see what the interface looks like, not just the edit profile form. Does anyone know of an example profile to look at?


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