Developers all over the world already use GitHub, which now wants to make it easier to build experiences for the platform. It’s announcing a few changes to its developer program, which will open up its API to developers without a paid account for the first time.
Those with paid accounts will now get added perks. Level one, the free tier, gives developers “tools to learn about” the Github API as well as acess to the integrator community. Users will also get access to special developer events and content.
The second level of this new program gives users all the benefits of the first level, but adds credits to GitHub and “network discounts.” Level three adds some marketing muscle, like retweets from the company’s Twitter account and special placement on the various digital platforms it manages; those at this level also get “strategic consulting services” to scale products built with the developer program.
This new “open” policy is still governed by GitHub. Rather than let developers pay for access to any of the three tiers, it will only open up the top two levels to those with large communities. It doesn’t say what the thresholds for the top two levels are, but it seems like a measure to keep its program from becoming bloated. Other developer programs with APIs, such as Slack, have a seemingly endless list of integrations listed.
GitHub’s move comes days after Twitter altered its own API platform, which also has three levels of service. It’s not known if GitHub will offer up any data for developers, but Twitter is leaning into Gnip for its top tier of service.
Either way, creating a solid integration for GitHub and having it collaborate on (and promote) that service is something many developers will have a hard time passing up. For the rest of the community, Github may end up more like a platform than a service – something quite a few have been yearning for.