Skip to main content


This project is maintained by the Permissionless Software Foundation.

This document describes a very simple process suitable for most projects under the PSF umbrella. It is based on this Medium article and the Node.js Community Contribution Guide. Projects are encouraged to adopt this whether they are hosted under the PSF or not.

The goal of this document is to create a contribution process that:

  • Encourages new contributions.
  • Encourages contributors to remain involved.
  • Avoids unnecessary processes and bureaucracy whenever possible.
  • Creates a transparent decision making process which makes it clear how contributors can be involved in decision making.

This document is based on much prior art in the Node.js community, io.js, and the Node.js project.

Additional guidance can be found at the Permissionless Software Foundation Telegram Channel.


  • A Contributor is any individual creating or commenting on an issue or pull request.
  • A Committer is a subset of contributors who have been given write access to the repository.
  • A TSC (Technical Steering Committee) is a group of committers representing the required technical expertise to resolve rare disputes.

Logging Issues

Log a GitHub Issue for any question or problem you might have. When in doubt, log an issue, any additional policies about what to include will be provided in the responses. The only exception is security disclosures which should be sent privately.

Committers may direct you to another repository, ask for additional clarifications, and add appropriate metadata before the issue is addressed.

Please be courteous, respectful, and every participant is expected to follow the project's Code of Conduct.


Any change to resources in this repository must be through GitHub Pull Requests (PR). This applies to all changes to documentation, code, binary files, etc. Even long term committers and TSC members must use pull requests.

No pull request can be merged without being reviewed.

For non-trivial contributions, pull requests should sit for at least 36 hours to ensure that contributors in other timezones have time to review. Consideration should also be given to weekends and other holiday periods to ensure active committers all have reasonable time to become involved in the discussion and review process if they wish.

The default for each contribution is that it is accepted once no committer has an objection. During review committers may also request that a specific contributor who is most versed in a particular area gives a "LGTM" (looks good to me) before the PR can be merged. There is no additional "sign off" process for contributions to land. Once all issues brought by committers are addressed it can be landed by any committer.

In the case of an objection being raised in a pull request by another committer, all involved committers should seek to arrive at a consensus by way of addressing concerns being expressed by discussion, compromise on the proposed change, or withdrawal of the proposed change.

If a contribution is controversial and committers cannot agree about how to get it to land or if it should land then it should be escalated to the TSC. TSC members should regularly discuss pending contributions in order to find a resolution. It is expected that only a small minority of issues be brought to the TSC for resolution and that discussion and compromise among committers be the default resolution mechanism.

Becoming a Committer

All contributors who land a non-trivial contribution should be on-boarded in a timely manner, and added as a committer, and be given write access to the repository.

Committers are expected to follow this policy and continue to send pull requests, go through proper review, and have other committers merge their pull requests.

TSC Process

The TSC uses a "consensus seeking" process for issues that are escalated to the TSC. The group tries to find a resolution that has no open objections among TSC members. If a consensus cannot be reached that has no objections then a majority wins vote is called. It is also expected that the majority of decisions made by the TSC are via a consensus seeking process and that voting is only used as a last-resort.

Resolution may involve returning the issue to committers with suggestions on how to move forward towards a consensus. It is not expected that a meeting of the TSC will resolve all issues on its agenda during that meeting and may prefer to continue the discussion happening among the committers.

Members can be added to the TSC at any time. Any committer can nominate another committer to the TSC and the TSC uses its standard consensus seeking process to evaluate whether or not to add this new member. Members who do not participate consistently at the level of a majority of the other members are expected to resign.