Contribute to the Planet Friendly Web Guide


This guide is being written in the open, so you're looking at unfinished draft content. Sorry about the mess.

You can get an idea of the proposed table of contents on this trello board, and if you're up for helping we're looking for help in a number of areas.

If you just want to hear when a first version of the guide is ready, you can sign up for the newsletter too.

Want to get involved?

That’s great news - huzzah!

This might be a good time to share the vision of this project, to help give an idea what this is all about:

work with web professionals, campaigners, and academics, to build tools and information resources for web professionals, so that they can understand and radically reduce the environmental impact of the web

Note: the scope of this guide is limited to what can realistically be done to change the impact of using and building the web, over effecting change via the web.

For example, while going vegan and not flying on holidays are effective steps to reduce a personal carbon footprint, they wouldn’t fit in this guide. There’s plenty of useful information about this already.

Running everything on renewable power, and making it easier to replace long work commutes with remote work, would be a better fit, as this isn’t covered so much yet.

You don’t need to be an expert in climate change, or a ninja coder to help out on this guide. As long as you’re interested in up for learning, and prepared to follow the code of conduct, we’ll do our best to make contributing a rewarding experience.

Who are we?

We are a (tiny) group of friendly people, with an interest in the transformative power of the web, and in climate change. You can see a bit more in the contact page on about

How you can help

The first, easiest thing - help shape the guide by voting on the bits that interest you on this Trello board.

We have a finite amount of time to write the guide, so knowing where to focus efforts is useful for prioritising what to write about.

If you have time, and you don’t see a matching question already, try adding a comment phrased as a question that you’d want to be able to answer by reading the content in this part of the guide.

Having a set of questions to check a page against helps design the content so it’s meeting the needs of people visiting the site.

An example might look like:

What difference does it make to the carbon footprint of a site if it’s powered by electricity generated from burning coal, compared to using renewables?

Visit the Trello board and mark what you’re interested in

I want to do more to help!

That’s fantastic news - huzzah! You can see what we’re focussing our efforts on at any given point by consulting our roadmap on github.

If you have expertise in the field of CSR and environmental sustainability

Much of this guide relies on data in reports, and papers, and in some cases, speaking directly to experts or practitioners. Given how fast technology changes, it’s important to base the guide on up to date information, and if you know of more recent publications, we’d love to hear about them.

Go to the Planet Friendly Web Guide contributor form

If you are comfortable using github, markdown, or html/css

The Planet Friendly Web Guide exists as a static website, written largely in Markdown for the various sections. It uses TachyonCSS as a the CSS framework, as it’s small, well documented, and relatively easy to use.

The general (ideal) workflow typically looks like:

Go to the Planet Friendly Web Guide contributor form

If you’re interested in user research and UX

If you’re comfortable interviewing users, or you’re looking for practice doing so, you can volunteer to buddy up on interviews. The goal here is to help capture the key points from speaking to users of the guide, as well as subject matter experts, so content can be revised, or new sources added.

Go to the Planet Friendly Web Guide contributor form

If you are up for reading early versions of the guide

You might just be interested in reading versions of the guide as they’re written, and giving feedback on the content and clarity. That’s extremely valuable. You’ll have an option to opt-in when signing up for the newsletter, or you can opt in, when filling out the contributor form.

Go to the Planet Friendly Web Guide contributor form

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