couldn’t we set up some system for the funding of features/plugins?
Sorry this is going to be a long post, but there’s something I find very strange in the open source world, and WP in particular.
Since I first started to use WP 5 years ago I’ve seen people on forums saying they’d really be interested in seeing some plugin developed, and that they’d even be prepared to participate financially, but most of the time things don’t come through.
I’ve always felt that there was something to be done here, some way to get interested people to fund together the development of plugins in an organized and reasonably safe fashion.
Couldn’t we try something like this:
1. Set up a new forum section, or a subsection of the “request & feedback”, to post requests by people who’d be prepared to commit to participate to the funding.
2. For those projects that gather enough interest, we then create a dedicated group (a funding group), where only those who are prepared to finance become members.
3. Since guys like me don’t know how choose a good coder (and here’s an important point), there could be an experienced programmer (from Automattic maybe… ) that would act as the project’s “supervisor”, and guide the selection of the coder.
4. Once we’re set on the features and dev cost of the plugin, we’d try and gather enough group members to fund it.
5. Once enough members are there, a fund call message is sent to all of them, we wire the money onto some paypal account, and development can start under the supervision of the supervisor (the guy we rely on not to get swindled). There could be a devlog where we follow the process.
The cornerstone of all this is finding professionals to act as supervisors. But I think that WP and BP would really benefit from this, as it could speed up the development of great features.
Imagine, a plugin that would cost 800$ to develop would only take 40 people paying 20$ each. Why isn’t this happening already?
In order to put somekind of incentive in funding projects, there could be a period of time set before the plugin is ultimately released to the open public for download.
What do you guys think?
PS. I just saw that there’s already a discussion on the same topic on the forum at BuddyPress Dev
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