Bountysource payment process (backer tutorial)


UPDATE: Bountysource has poor customer support, expensive fees, and a non-intuitive workflow.  Use FreedomSponsors instead


original article for historical documentation...

Bountysource is a helpful service that allows companies, groups, and individuals to incentivize specific development tasks via bounties and fundraisers.  Many big companies have used the service, including IBM, Facebook, GitHub, and Adobe.  Although the process is fairly straightforward, there are areas for improvement -- especially the payment process.  Here's the "missing manual":

0. If you haven't already, create a free Bountysource account

1. On the Bountysource homepage, find the Post section and submit the issue tracker URL for an issue you want to incentivize.  Bountysource currently supports GitHub, Bugzilla, Google Code, Jira, Trac, LaunchPad, and Pivotal issue trackers.

2. Click the Post button

3. Select a pre-determined amount or enter your desired bounty amount:

4. Select a payment option and checkout to complete the order:

Once processed, Bountysource displays the new bounty on their homepage.  You can also post a link to the bounty on the target issue's tracker or other advertising means, like social media.

Bountysource holds the funds until the issue is marked closed and awaits a bounty claim by a developer.  Simple, right?

Well, what happens when a developer claims the bounty?  The Bountysource FAQ describes a straightforward process: The backer(s) receive email notifications indicating a claim has been filed.  They can either accept the claim, refute the claim within two weeks, or if a claim goes uncontested for two weeks the claim is automatically paid.

Easy...until you try to accept the claim.  The FAQ states:

"If all Backers vote to accept the claim, it is processed immediately and the developer is awarded the bounty."

But how do I "accept the claim"?  There's no button that says accept and the link emailed to backers doesn't explain it or provide an accept button either.  It turns out the solution is a non-intuitive three-step process:

1. Click the thumbs-up button to vote your approval:

2. Once all the backers vote their approval, an Accept button will appear which you should click:

3. The backers will be notified of the successful payment via an online message and email:

Not hard if you know the process, but super confusing if you don't!