Getting started with Hacktoberfest

We ask all participants to read through the details to ensure that the global community is working toward a shared goal. Thanks for honoring the values and following the rules of participation.

If you’re new to open source (everyone was once!), take a look at our

Introduction to Open Source series.

Before you make your first contribution, you should familiarize yourself with How To Create a Pull Request.

The following resources share repositories that curate tasks for beginners:

Up For Grabs

Issuehub.io

First Timers Only

Your First PR

Awesome for Beginners

Once you start feeling more comfortable, you can find more open source projects through the following programs:

Pull Request Roulette

Code Triage

24 P[ull] R[equest]s

This is another great guide outlining ways you can contribute to open source.

Recommendations for creating a good Hacktoberfest issue in your project:

Apply the "Hacktoberfest" label to issues in your GitHub project that are ready for new contributors to work on.

Add a CONTRIBUTING.md file with contribution guidelines to your repo.

Choose issues that have a well-defined scope and are self-contained.

Adopt a code of conduct to foster a greater sense of inclusion and community.


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Learn about driving more contributions to your project:

How to Hacktoberfest — A guide for open source project maintainers, part 1 (webinar)

How to Hacktoberfest — A guide for open source project maintainers, part 2 (webinar)

Organizing a Hacktoberfest event in October is a great way to support the open source community.

Last year, 267 events were organized in 50 countries. This year, let’s work together to bring this celebration to even more people around the world! Explore the Hacktoberfest Event Kit and watch our webinar to learn how to successfully organize a gathering in your community.

Hacktoberfest is a great fit for technology companies looking to increase participation in their open source projects.

Your company can participate by encouraging people to contribute to your repositories, organizing community events, or engaging internal employees.

Logos from participating companies are displayed on the official Hacktoberfest website to showcase your support of open source.

Our friends at SendGrid wrote this guide outlining how they used Hacktoberfest to increase their open source contributions by 3,510%. They also talked about this growth at DevRelCon.

Event details

Hacktoberfest is open to everyone in our global community!

Pull requests can be made in any GitHub-hosted repositories/projects.

You can sign up anytime between October 1 and October 31.

Participation rules

To qualify for the official limited edition Hacktoberfest shirt, you must register and then make four pull requests (PRs) between October 1-31 (in any time zone). PRs can be made to any public repo on GitHub, not only the ones with issues labeled Hacktoberfest. If a maintainer reports your pull request as invalid or behavior not in line with the project’s code of conduct, you will be ineligible to participate. This year, the first 50,000 participants who successfully complete the challenge will earn a T-shirt. (Last year 46,088 earned a shirt!)

Quality standards

In line with Hacktoberfest value #2 (Quantity is fun, quality is key), here are examples of the PRs that we consider to be low-quality contributions (which we discourage).

PRs that are automated (e.g. scripted opening PRs to remove whitespace/optimize images)

PRs that are disruptive (e.g. taking someone else's branch/commits and making a PR)

PRs that are regarded by a project maintainer as a hindrance vs. helping

Something that's clearly an attempt to simply +1 your PR count for October

Last but not least, one PR to fix a typo is fine. 5 PRs to remove a stray whitespace... not.

Values

Inspired by you – the community – through your actions and stories.

Everyone is welcome! Hacktoberfest participants have represented 151 countries and thousands of unique skill sets. Our program welcomes everyone already in the open source software community – and anyone interested in diving in.

Quantity is fun, quality is key! Participating in Hacktoberfest leads to personal growth, professional opportunities, and community building. And it all begins with meaningful contributions to open source technology.

Short-term actions, long-term impact! In the open source community, we stand on the shoulders of those who came before us. Your participation has a lasting effect on people and technology long after October comes to an end. This is a voyage, not a race.

Let’s work together to reduce spam

Spammy PRs can be labeled as “invalid.” Maintainers are faced with the majority of spam that occurs during Hacktoberfest, and we dislike spam just as much as you. If you’re a maintainer, please label any spammy PRs submitted to the repositories you maintain as invalid, and close them. PRs with this label won't count toward Hacktoberfest.

There’s a seven-day review window for PRs. This year, we've implemented a new seven-day grace period that all PRs for Hacktoberfest must go through before they count toward completing the challenge. Once a participant has submitted four eligible PRs (ready-to-review, not drafts), the review window begins. This period gives maintainers time to identify and label spammy PRs as invalid. If the PRs are not marked invalid within that window, they will allow the user to complete the Hacktoberfest challenge. If any of the PRs are labeled as invalid, however, the user will return to the pending state until they have four eligible PRs, at which point the review period will then start again.

Bad repositories will be excluded. In the past, we've seen many repositories that encourage participants to make simple PRs – such as adding their name to a file – to quickly gain a PR toward winning Hacktoberfest. While this may be a learning tool for new contributors, it goes against one of our core values for Hacktoberfest. The quality of pull requests is paramount; quantity comes second. These repositories do not encourage quality contributions and provide an unfair advantage in completing the Hacktoberfest challenge. This year, we've implemented a system to block these repositories, and any pull requests submitted to such repositories will not be counted.