The Experience of Participating in a WordPress Contributor Day

The WordPress community encourages members to contribute to the project, as it relies on both sponsored and volunteer contributors to keep moving forward. However, many people may feel overwhelmed or unsure about how they can contribute, especially if they are not developers. Despite these reservations, participating in Contributor Day at WordCamp US 2023 proved to be a valuable experience. Here are some key takeaways:

1. There are numerous ways to contribute to WordPress that don’t require coding skills. While developers are important contributors, there are 22 different contribution teams, some of which have nothing to do with programming. For example, the Photos team moderates submissions to the WordPress Photo Directory, and the Support team helps fellow users by answering questions on support forums.

2. Team leaders are available to guide and support contributors. During Contributor Day, working with the Support and Documentation teams presented challenges, but experienced team members were patient and helpful in explaining processes and answering questions. It’s okay not to know everything, as there is support available.

3. Contributor Days foster a sense of community. WordCamps attract attendees from all over the world, creating a community atmosphere. Even for introverts, it’s easy to connect with others who share a passion for WordPress. Many participants are first-time contributors, so there is a shared experience of learning and overcoming challenges together.

4. Contributor Day is not a sales pitch. There is no pressure to commit long-term or do anything beyond what you’re comfortable with. The focus is on helping and having fun.

5. Contributors are dedicated and passionate about WordPress. The success of WordPress over the past 20 years is due in large part to the dedication of its contributors. They are enthusiastic about their work and welcoming to newcomers.

Overall, attending Contributor Day at WordCamp is worth the time and effort. It provides learning opportunities and the chance to meet great people who share a common interest in WordPress. Your skills are valued, and there is a place for you to contribute, regardless of your expertise.