GitHub is adding new features and improvements to help build and grow open source communities. According to the organization, open source thrives on teamwork, and members need to be able to easily contribute and give back. The new features are centered around contributing, open source licensing, blocking, and privacy.
New contributor badges are designed to welcome new contributors, and it helps to identify the type of users within a project. For instance, maintainers will now be able to see a “first-time contributor” badge to new members. In addition, maintainers will also be able to distinguish lengthy and heated discussions, according to GitHub.
To make open source licensing easier, the organization has introduced a new license picker that provides an overview of the license, the full text, and the ability to customize fields.
Other ways GitHub is making it easier for new users to contribute is by enabling the ability to hide emails.
“Joining a community and making your first contribution can be intimidating. For one, not everyone wants their personal information to be public, often inadvertently the default workflow for many Git online tutorials,” GitHub wrote in a post. “Now, when you check the “keep your email address private” option in your email settings, we’ll also prevent your email from displaying in places like on your profile, in search results, or via the API so that you can contribute more confidently.”
Lastly, GitHub is updating how it handles blocked users, and provides a warning to maintainers about blocked users so they can decide whether or not the wish them to be contributors on their projects.