Commit message cheat sheet

Best practices

  • Minimum 3 words & 10 characters

    • At least a minimum of 3 words.

    • A total minimum of 10 characters.

    • e.g “Fix a bug” isn’t good enough: correct number of words, too few characters.

  • Proper spelling & grammar

    • All words should be spelled in Canadian English.
      (Only the commit message itself matters—American color in your code is okay.)

    • Sentence should be grammatically correct.

    • Commits should not end in periods (.)

  • Must start with an imperative verb

    • Start with words like “Fix”, “Add”, “Change”, etc.

    • It’s best to imagine that all your commit messages start with the phrase: “This commit will…”

    • First letter must be uppercase.


This commit will…

  • Good examples

    • “Fix a bug in the navigation”

    • “Add the footer to all the pages”

    • “Improve browser support”

    • “Darken the masthead colours”

    • “Change the title of the page”

  • Bad examples

    • “asdf”

    • “Chagnes”

    • “Commit changes”

    • “Fixes a bug in the CSS”

    • “Remove the last section.”

  • Example imperative verbs

    • “Fix”, “Change”, “Add”, “Remove”, “Test”, “Amend”, “Calculate”, “Correct”, “Finish”, “Disable”, “Darken”, “Lighten”, “Format”, “Extract”, “Improve”, “Push”

    • See the list of imperative verbs Markbot uses