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Bounty Guidelines

What to include, and what to keep in mind.
Please refer to the Github Issue Template for proper content formatting and structure 🙌

1. Submission Period

Indicate the timeline/deadline for accepting registrations and submissions during your hackathon. When this deadline is reached, no more submissions can be received.

2. Eligibility

In this section, you should briefly state your eligibility requirements: Are there any geographical restrictions on where you can send prizes or limits on where the required tools can be accessed from? Will there be age restrictions or other restrictions?

3. Prizes & Incentives

Prize Title (Title of the bounty)

The Bounty Title should be catchy and descriptive! Short and vague Bounty titles will not catch the participants’ attention and may result in lower projects submitted.

Prize Bounty

List the token type (ETH/ERC-20) and amount.

Important Tips

  • Be clear and transparent with your prizes. Make sure to explain the way that prices will be distributed. Will there be price categories (1st, 2nd, 3rd place)? Will there be a total price divided amongst many winners? Make sure this is detailed in the bounty to avoid confusion and backlash from participants.
  • Never remove or lower prizes after the hackathon is live!
  • Never promise prizes that you may not give out.
  • All prizes must be guaranteed to members of the hackathon.
  • Even if guaranteed, the requirements for how to achieve it need to be stated clearly in the Submission Requirements for the hackathon and cannot be changed once the hackathon is live.
  • We understand that if the submissions do not meet your set criteria and are considered to be of "low quality", prizes may not be awarded. In this event, your bounty should include: "We reserve the right to not pay out prizes if there are low-quality submissions that do not meet project criteria".
*Keep in mind that for ALL projects that may be judged as low quality/not meeting criteria, a detailed explanation of your reasoning will need to be provided.

4. Challenge Description

When completing this section, please consider the following:
  • Be as descriptive as possible about what you want to see built.
    • Challenges should be useful for your organization but open-ended enough to allow for creativity from hackers.
  • What do they need to create, and what framework is required?
    • Ex: Build a [project] using [X tool/ API] that [theme statement].
    • Ex: Build an application using React that helps make education accessible.

5. Submission Requirements

  • What do participants need to submit?
  • What constitutes a valid submission to win the prize? Share clear, concise, and detailed criteria for what you would consider a successful project.
  • What will help you determine whether a submission passed an acceptable quality threshold? Please include any relevant contribution guidelines/standards, etc.
    • Would you like a demo/presentation included in the submission? (Strongly recommended!). Make sure to specify.
For submission requirements, avoid requiring too much and instead use judging criteria to ensure all eligible projects are judged fairly. Here are some reasonable asks:
  • Link to their working project
  • Link & access to their Github repository (public or private)
  • 3-5 minute demonstration video
  • Include Licensing requirements for all submissions

6. Resources

You are asking your participants to build software, and depending on your requirements, it might be pretty complicated. To help your participants and your hackathon’s success, we recommend including any necessary resource to help participants build an amazing project. This might include:
  • Links to documentation,
  • Resources,
  • How-to videos,
  • Webinar schedules,
  • Other [anything else that may help participants create quality submissions.]
Make sure to add a link to your Discord or community groups where participants can get in touch with your team!

7. Judging

Hackathons commonly set up one panel of judges made up of subject matter professionals asked to judge all of the eligible projects based on the same judging criteria.

Judging Criteria

Before you launch your hackathon, you should define the judging criteria and their weight. Both are important for participants to know how their projects will be judged.
  • What are the criteria you want your judges to care about? Be sure to add a clear description of what each criteria measure for participants and judges to be on the same page.
Judging criteria should mirror what you would like the projects to focus on. Most often judging criteria include:
  • Quality of the idea (How creative and unique is the project?)
  • Implementation of the idea (Does the end result demonstrate quality software development and design?)
  • Potential Impact (How big of an impact could the project have?)
Make sure that you provide a detailed explanation of how the sponsor will ultimately decide the winner/winners from all valid submissions. Best submission(s) meeting some/all criteria by the deadline? Will the participants need to present in order to qualify for the price(s)? Be specific and transparent in your decision.
Note: Upon judging, if you come to the conclusion that no valid/quality submissions have been received and you wish to not pay out those submissions, make sure to provide reasoning to support your conclusions/decision. The participants invest time and energy into these events, and transparency goes a long way toward protecting your organization's reputation and future hackathons.

8. Winner Announcement Date

Please plan to have judges from your organization (or others you choose) review the submissions as early as possible after the hackathon ends to ensure prompt winner announcement and payout.
Kindly note that to ensure prompt winner payout, Gitcoin advises that payouts are handled within 7 days post hackathon wrap-up. Kindly note that failure to complete payouts within 21 days post hackathon wrap-up will prohibit the posting of future bounties and participation in hackathons going forward.
*** Participants can start working on their prizes at any time during the hackathon. We recommend checking regularly on progress and making sure to reply to any questions in the hackathon Town Square or your own community chat.
*** Include your Discord handles in your bounty!! Remember, the most important thing you can do is communicate with the participants. If your participants have questions, concerns, or uncertainties and are not receiving responses, they will post about it publicly. Developers are generally understanding as long as they are being heard, responded to, and respected. Hackathons are a great way to build an engaging and loyal community. Let’s make the most out of it!
*** Skill(s) Tags: Be sure to include skill(s) tags relevant to your bounty when completing your bounty issue.