Open Collective launched in 2017 as a new organization that helps groups raise funds and manage them transparently. The service is now widely used by many open source projects. Webpack, one of the first major Open Collective success stories, was able to fund its first full-time developer through the service and is now operating on an estimated annual budget of $331,471. The San Francisco WordPress meetup (WPSFO) is one example of a WordPress group that successfully uses the service to receive sponsorships that help cover expenses for events.
Open Collective has launched a new tool called BackYourStack that helps people and organizations become aware of projects they use that need funding. The tool scans GitHub accounts (for individuals and organizations) and identifies projects that have already set up accounts on Open Collective. The tool shows all detected dependencies and the repositories where they are used.
Here are a few sample results you get from scanning the WordPress GitHub account:
The results display where project is used, the number of full-time maintainers, progress to reach the next goal, and a few organizations that are already backing the project. Open Collective also allows backers to support multiple dependences in bulk via a lump sum as an alternative to backing each project individually.
Not every open source project listed on Open Collective will have the need to fund salaries and events, but even a small yearly budget can reduce out-of-pocket costs for open source maintainers for things like hosting and promotional costs. Many widely used open source projects go without funding because users are not aware of their needs. BackYourStack helps people and organizations make a direct connection to the projects they depend on.