Become a Contributor

Welcome! First off; THANK YOU for your interest in contributing to Zinc! Your time is valuable, so let's get started!

Zinc products and services would stagnate without our Contributors. Contributors suggest and implement changes to our products and services for Maintainers to apply.

Anyone and everyone can be a Contributor! All we ask is that Contributors follow a few ground rules to help Zinc Maintainers and Contributors work well together.

Contributor Ground Rules

The keywords must, must not, and should in this document are to be interpreted as described in RFC 2119.

How can I contribute...

Features or requests?

Gaps between what a Contributor wishes a product did and what it does is a missing feature. Small, incremental features with clear use cases are the easiest and fastest to build.

Contributors are encouraged to create a feature requests in the issue tracker.

To start building the feature, review the development workflow.

Bug reports or fixes?

Gaps between what a Contributor expects a product to do and what it actually does is a bug. Bug reports that clearly express what was expected to happen and what did happen are the easiest to resolve.

If you notice something unexpected in a product, please create a bug report in our issue tracker. We try to prioritize fixing bugs over adding features.

If you want to try squashing the bug yourself; review the development workflow.

Security concerns or patches?

We take security seriously, but that doesn't mean we will always get it right. We encourage Contributors to create a security report with security concerns.

If the concern may expose a vulnerability in a released version of a product, please email the maintainers.

If you think you can resolve the concern yourself; start by reviewing the development workflow.

Documentation improvements?

We strive for documentation to be findable, clear, and in plain language. If you are unable to find an answer to your questions, please create a documentation request in our issue tracker.

If you think you can fix the documentation yourself, feel free to use the GitHub editor.


At present, we do not have a strategy for internationalization of our products or documentation. If you have recommendations, please start a conversation in our issue tracker.

Getting Help

There are two ways to get help; one is through opening a ticket in our issue tracker, where we will do our best to provide support in a timely manner.

For people or businesses with urgent support needs, we offer professional support at $250USD per hour. Support can be scheduled by emailing [email protected].

Development Guide

This guide is the starting point for people who would like to directly modify a Zinc product to fix a bug or enhance a feature.

If you are unsure what change you would like to make to a product, find something to do!

If know what you would like to change, start learning the system.

If you know what you want to change and are comfortable with the product's design and architecture, Try to make the change.

Find Something To Do

We encourage Contributors to "eat their own dog food" and make changes that are interesting or useful to them.

When that fails, we recommend taking a look at the open tickets in our issue tracker.

The label "Help Wanted" is where we need some help. "Good First Issue" is for we think new contributors can chip in. The labels "Code", "Design", or "Documentation" indicate what particular skills an issue likely takes.

Learn the System

Fork and clone the project repository and review the product design and architecture documentation found in the projects

Make a Change

First, review the dependencies and install the tools needed to build and run the product. Many projects have automated these steps by including a script called bin/setup.

We recommend Contributors write a test to isolate the bug or demonstrate the feature.

Test are ran by executing bin/test within the projects top-level directory.

If you are unsure how to proceed at any point, please take some time to learn the system or ask for help.

Submit a Patch

We closely follow GitHub Flow, with the following exceptions:

  1. We encourage contributors to create a draft pull request early, even if the work isn't 'done' as this is the easiest way to get help. Sharing work early makes it possible for other Contributors to keep up with and build on top of the work done, instead of needing to reinvent the wheel.
  2. We name our primary branch production, staging, and development for services and the major version (0.X, 1.X, etc) for libraries.

We encourage Contributors to name their branches in such a way as to indicate why the branch exists. For example: fix/login-error or enhance/typography or document/how-to-contribute.


Before Maintainers can merge a Contributor's changes, Contributors must grant Zinc all rights to the work performed on the project by sending the following message to [email protected] or as a comment on your pull request.

"I assign all rights, including copyright, to any of my future work on Zinc projects to Zinc Collective LLC."


To put it bluntly, long term viability.

Copyright assignment grants Zinc the flexibility to decide how best to leverage the changes Contributors provide.

Because Zinc is a cooperative, any Contributor may become an owner of Zinc, granting rights to board representation and to share in the near and long term wealth generated by our products and services.