IBM developerWorks Author Achievement Recognition Program

Have questions?

How do I sign up for the dW author program?

To participate in the program, simply complete and submit the very brief registration form. You will receive a smart tracking tool (a spreadsheet that you can use with Microsoft® Excel® or OpenOffice) with which you can record your progress.

If I participate in the dW author program, will I be paid for writing articles?

The dW author program recognizes publishing achievement and does not offer monetary awards, and is not affiliated with any compensation program.

Do articles I have written for other publications count?

No. The dW author program only recognizes contributions to developerWorks, so only original contributions that are published first in developerWorks are applicable. Content initially published elsewhere (including book excerpts, videos on other sites, your personal blog, and so on) are not applicable. Similarly, content published on IBM-based non-developerWorks properties (including Redbooks, Technotes, Knowledge Centers, IBM Press books, and so on) are not applicable.

My article is featured in more than one zone. Does that mean I get more points?

No. Although we often spotlight an article in multiple areas of the site to make it accessible to the widest audience, the article is still only published once.

After I sign up, how long before I can publish an article?

You can sign up for the program at any time. Past publications that were published within five years of registration are applicable, provided they meet the eligibility requirements.

Can I automatically get a designation if I have enough points from past publications?

If you have accumulated the minimum number of publication points and participation credits needed to achieve a dW author program designation, you will be awarded the designation, provided your most recent contribution was published within the past year. If you haven't contributed to developerWorks in more than one year, then you will be awarded the designation with your next published item. This is an opportunity for past authors to re-establish their presence on developerWorks.

How will you know if I really reviewed an article or mentored an author?

We use the reference information you provide in the tracking tool to verify these entries during the verification process.

Do I get extra credit for answering questions from readers who contact me through an article?

No. Responding to questions that result from your article is expected of developerWorks authors. Assistance that you provide through developerWorks forums or blogs can count toward community activity.

Can I be an author and a technical reviewer?

Yes, but not for the same article.

At what point is an article considered "published"?

When your article is available publicly with an URL, you may then enter it as a published item on your tracking tool. Unpublished items are ineligible.

I published an item on developerWorks that doesn't fit in the categories defined in the tracking tool. What do I do?

Contact your editor or the program administrator. If your content is eligible to be included in the program, we will instruct you on how to enter it in the tracking tool. Be aware, however, that some developerWorks content is not applicable.

Is there a place I can go to online to see my status in the program?

Because you track your own status, you will always know what you need to do to reach the next achievement level by checking the dashboard section of the tracking tool.

I have enough points, why don’t I have the designation?

In addition to accumulating a minimum number of publication points, you must also earn the corresponding participation credits.

What counts for community activities?

Owning and maintaining a blog, participating in webcasts, forums, interviews, and videos are eligible community activities. Remember that all eligible activity must be contained within developerWorks properties. (If you wish to include forum and space activity, you will need Version 2.0.2 (V202) or later of the tracking tool.)

How are publication points awarded when there is more than one author?

All publication points are divided evenly between co-authors.

Are publication points for a group blog awarded based on the contributions of each individual in the group?

If you own the blog, you receive points for owning and maintaining the blog. For the purposes of the dW author program, a blog is considered a single content item that is continually updated. Therefore, you do not receive points for individual blog entries. If you post entries to an eligible public blog that you do not own, you can receive points for up to ten individual posts.

Why do you make the distinction for single-author content?

The dW author program acknowledges the contributions of individuals. The program contains requirements for single-author content to enable participants to demonstrate their individual strengths. Because teaming is critical for success in all aspects of our industry, the program also contains elements that require working with colleagues.

What do I get when I reach an achievement level?

When you reach an achievement level, you will receive an e-mail notification, an announcement on developerWorks, and a formal certificate of achievement that specifies your designation. You can use your new awarded title with your professional credentials as a way to exhibit your accomplishment, promote your expertise, and heighten your professional reputation. Your name will be listed on the dW author program directory page as an accredited author. The names of Professional Authors and Master Authors will include a link to their developerWorks portfolio. You will also be awarded an IBM open badge for being an IBM developerWorks Accredited Author. This industry-standard credential can be easily shared and promoted through LinkedIn and other social media.

How do I get the IBM developerWorks Accredited Author open badge?

IBM developerWorks Accredited Author is a companion credential that is awarded when you reach an achievement level in the dW author program.

How will I know that I have reached an achievement level?

The dashboard section of your tracking tool displays the number of publication points and participation credits you have earned, and also counts down the remaining requirements for each achievement level. When all the indicators for an achievement level reach 0, the word “SUBMIT” will display. At that time, send your tracking tool to the program administrator at so we can verify your data and confirm your achievement.

What is the time limit for fulfilling all the requirements for an achievement level?

Because elements of the publishing process is beyond an author's control, there is no time limit during which you must complete all the requirements for a particular achievement level. The exception is that you must have published within the past 12 months to be awarded a designation.

Who do I notify when I need data added to my tracking tool?

You can enter updates into your tracking tool at any time. You do not need to notify us each time you publish a new article. Send us your tracking tool when the dashboard indicates that you have completed the requirements for an achievement level.

What if I enter data incorrectly in the tracking tool?

If we find errors or discrepancies in your tracking tool during the verification process, we will notify you, correct the errors, and return the tracking tool to you so you can continue.

Do articles published on developerWorks sites in other geographies (like dW China, dW Russia, and so on) count in the program?

Yes. However, if your article was published on the developerWorks worldwide site in English and then translated for the dW China site, you can enter information for EITHER the English article OR the Chinese article into your tracking tool, but not both.

When does my designation expire?

It doesn't, unless we revoke your designation according to the terms and conditions of the program.

What happens after I finally achieve Master Author?

Keep contributing! There are ongoing plateaus beyond Master Author. For every additional 100 publication points you accumulate, you achieve another Master Author level. For example, after you have earned a total of 300 publication points, you will have achieved Master Author, Level 2; after 400 points, Master Author, Level 3, and so on.