Getting Started at a Contributor Day

This guide is intended to help you get started contributing to the metaMeta Meta is a term that refers to the inside workings of a group. For us, this is the team that works on internal WordPress sites like WordCamp Central and Make WordPress. team at a contributor dayContributor Day Contributor Days are standalone days, frequently held before or after WordCamps but they can also happen at any time. They are events where people get together to work on various areas of There are many teams that people can participate in, each with a different focus. Below is an outline of what the meta team does and how to quickly get started with various projects that the meta team works on. If you need any help, talk to your contributor day organizer, or ask your question in #meta on Slack.

This is a work in progress so don’t be afraid to amend the document or leave comments, particularly if you’re at a contributor day and find that we’ve missed something.

Regular Meeting Time: None, but occasional ticket triage sessions in #meta on Fridays at 17:00 UTC.
Chat Room: #meta

Group Responsibilities

The only responsibility of the meta team is to maintain and create The community site where WordPress code is created and shared by the users. This is where you can download the source code for WordPress core, plugins and themes as well as the central location for community conversations and organization. sites. Some of these sites include:

  • theme, pluginPlugin A plugin is a piece of software containing a group of functions that can be added to a WordPress website. They can extend functionality or add new features to your WordPress websites. WordPress plugins are written in the PHP programming language and integrate seamlessly with WordPress. These can be free in the Plugin Directory or can be cost-based plugin from a third-party, and pattern directories
  • TracTrac Trac is the place where contributors create issues for bugs or feature requests much like GitHub. (coreCore Core is the set of software required to run WordPress. The Core Development Team builds WordPress., meta, etc)
  • support forums
  • Codex

A full list of sites and and projects is available, though not all sites are open sourceOpen Source Open Source denotes software for which the original source code is made freely available and may be redistributed and modified. Open Source **must be** delivered via a licensing model, see GPL. yet.

Top ↑

Common Tasks

As a member of the meta team, some common tasks that you’ll carry out are:

  • Coding and programming tasks (PHPPHP PHP (recursive acronym for PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor) is a widely-used open source general-purpose scripting language that is especially suited for web development and can be embedded into HTML., JS, CSSCSS CSS is an acronym for cascading style sheets. This is what controls the design or look and feel of a site., etc)
  • Design work
  • AccessibilityAccessibility Accessibility (commonly shortened to a11y) refers to the design of products, devices, services, or environments for people with disabilities. The concept of accessible design ensures both “direct access” (i.e. unassisted) and “indirect access” meaning compatibility with a person’s assistive technology (for example, computer screen readers). ( work
  • Testing sites to find issues to be fixed
  • Adding and updating content

Top ↑

Prior Knowledge

To get involved with the meta team, you’ll need some prior knowledge, depending on your area of expertise.

  • For development, coding expertise is needed, specifically with WordPress themes and plugins.
  • Designers, writers, testers are all needed with skills in their respective specialties.
  • Everyone who wants to be involved with the meta team should know where the meta trac is and read the Meta Development Blog for the latest information.

Top ↑


Since contributor days have limited time, and sometimes have slow WiFi, it’s best to setup your development environment before you attend.

  • A version control system: either SVN or Git, depending on the project. The Contributing with Git guide has more details about using GitGit Git is a free and open source distributed version control system designed to handle everything from small to very large projects with speed and efficiency. Git is easy to learn and has a tiny footprint with lightning fast performance. Most modern plugin and theme development is being done with this version control system.
  • A local development environment

Top ↑

Essential Reading

Top ↑

First Steps

The first step is to select a project that you’re interested in working on, whether it’s the plugin directory or the developer hub, and start finding issues with it or ways it can be improved. If you want to contribute code, all open source projects are listed in the prior link and can be contributed to through the meta trac.

Top ↑


Some easy tasks for a first time contributor to get started at a contributor day are:

  • View the currently open tickets and work on those if you’re a programmer. If you want something relatively easy to get your feet wet, focus on tickets tagged with good-first-bug.
  • If you’re a designer, concentrate on the open tickets that need UI/UX.
  • Testers can pick a website they’re interested in and find ways it can be improved
  • Regardless of whether the code for the meta site you’re testing is open source, getting tickets on file will help identify what needs to be fixed or designed better, and how to prioritize which components we should focus on open-sourcing first.
  • If you find an issue with one of the WordPress meta sites you can open a ticket on meta trac.

Last updated: