People want to get better at what they do.
People want to produce something
meaningful beyond than themselves.
Many times this is because they do not get the same satisfaction
from their job, and find that contributing to OSS is a way to
creatively express themselves through code. Successfully
contributing to a project creates a sense of accomplishment and
sense of pride in one’s work.
Why Hackers Do What They Do: Understanding Motivation and Effort in Free/Open Source
Software Projects, 2003
Extra reason: Accomplishment
“In March, I quit my job to work on Drupal 8 and then
Dries asked me to be a maintainer.
Since then I've spent over £15,000 of my own savings
and I've relied on my partner's maternity pay as well.”
Leaving Acquia, to have more time to contribute
"For the first seven and a half years, I didn't make any money from Drupal.
It was a hobby project. … By the time I was finishing school, I had
something like 400 euros left."
One of the biggest goosebumps moments in my lifetime was a couple
years back at the DrupalCon in San Francisco. There were a little over
3,000 people in the audience. I don't know why, but at some point I asked
the crowd, "If Drupal has changed your life, will you please stand up?"
Almost 3,000 people stood up. It was overwhelming
Reflections from My First Drupalcon - Ross Nunamaker
This is not a group of people simply looking to earn
a salary. This is a community that wants to make a
difference in the world.
It’s crap tech. Not bad tech, not complex tech, not even
immature tech. Just plain old crap. What about the
millions of sites and hordes of developers, the famous
“Drupal community” that sustains the CMS? All I can say
is they have either drunk too much Drupal Kool-Aid or
they have become inured to the punishment Drupal inflicts
Driving the hate to push forward Drupal