What: Presentation at Sandberg
When: 27 January 2021
Their annotation on CoC:
Who: Luke and Cristina
Trajectory of our CoC
- Professionalisation grant
- Relearn 2019
- Collective Conditions 2019
- Displayed at http://www.intersectionsofcare.net/ | http://www.intersectionsofcare.net/guidelines/index.html
Perhaps to mention
> Moderator tasks https://pad.vvvvvvaria.org/tasks.board
> How we wanted to ask Eleanor Greenhalgh to give us a workshop but this never happened (CORONA)
- shaping informal situations, group dynamics
- - apply and enforce CoC together with one more person
- - the person others can confide issues in
- - activates less strong voices, moderates voices that are heard more often
- - raises issues of accessibilty
- - ensures someone takes care of hospitality during events
- - reviews and updates the CoC yearly depending on how the values of the group change (not necessarily alone, this should be a shared task)
- - thinks about the well being of the group and organises "team building" days or activities that strenghten the group dynamics
- - thinks about diversity and inclusion within the group itself, but also new possible members
> How we wanted to organise field trip days to relax and spend onspanning time with each other but this never happened (CORONA)
> How do we take care of each other online these days?
Abridged Version (in the space)
Pad used by Varias for the preparation
- Discussion on codes of conduct https://gitlab.com/relearn/relearn2019/-/blob/master/relearn.local/var/www/html/etherdump/publish/conductable
- Femke Snelting on CoC in Free Software communities http://snelting.domainepublic.net/wp-content/uploads/SNELTING-CodesofConduct0505.pdf
- Geek Feminism's evaluations of CoC https://geekfeminism.wikia.org/wiki/Code_of_conduct_evaluations
- Collective Conditions Reader https://constantvzw.org/collectiveconditions/reader.pdf
Some Codes of Conduct
- Collective Conditions http://constantvzw.org/w/?u=http://media.constantvzw.org/wefts/123/
- Free BSD https://www.freebsd.org/internal/code-of-conduct.html
- Hackers & Designers https://hackersanddesigners.nl/p/H%26D_Code_of_Conduct
- LGM https://libregraphicsmeeting.org/lgm/public-documentation/code-of-conduct/
- Relearn Paris CoC https://gitlab.com/relearn/relearn2019/-/blob/master/relearn.local/var/www/html/etherdump/publish/code-of-conduct-paris
- Community Agreement https://transhackfeminist.noblogs.org/community-agreement/
- Geek Feminism https://geekfeminismdotorg.wordpress.com/about/code-of-conduct/
5 min - what is varia: what we do (events, work groups, infrastructure)
- member run organisation (16), started in 2017 by 5 people, who then invited others in, takes time to establish how you want to run the space
- everyday technology
- examples of events
- run and maintain our own our own infrastructure
10 min - admin model of varia
- very brief intro to what we have now
- before prof / after prof
- proffessionalisation: 3 docs - roles of board, CoC, aims
- - one single board running for 2 years
- - no specific team roles
- - "writing of those documents was motivated mostly by a desire to set up discussions about what varia is, how things should relate and what membership means etc."
- - "Varia as a collective unity was pretty much undefined while writing it. Writing the CoC (and the other documents) was a practical way to address this and learn to know each other; an active form of community building."
- - "started thinking about the CoC from a feeling of necessity: we are a group of 16 people, if any conflict emerges, then we do not know what to do. And even beyond the risk of situations with conflicts, there was also something else. It was difficult to speak about how we operate as a group together, there was a feeling of awkwardness surrounding it, it's hard to describe it."
- - 3 documents: Code of Conduct http://varia.zone/en/pages/code-of-conduct.html , Varia Collective Statement http://varia.zone/en/pages/collective-statement.html , Membership Guidelines http://varia.zone/en/pages/membership-guidelines.html
- - Additional roles - e.g. mediator, programme manager, CoC contacts, space-alist
- - 2 people on for CoC duties (avoid 1 person issue)
- - mediator have active role in the org
- - 2 CoCs: one for the physical space, one for how we work together
- - it made it clearer to communicate what Varia's values were and to break the clique impression
- - the board changes every year
- - new members would be added in 2 moments of the year
- AFTER STIMULERINGSFONDS
- Varia has five main missions:
- * To work towards the eventual **disentanglement from the radical monopoly of Big Tech corporations** (Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, among others) by collectively building digital infrastructures that foreground care and conviviality.
- * To **demystify the complexities of technical objects** and find ways to adapt them to the needs of different communities by providing a space for long-term, sustainable, critical, artistic, hands-on, **dialogical learning** about everyday technology.
- * To **strengthen solidarity between local and international networks** by working together with artists, musicians, designers, technologists, theorists, activists and other practitioners that share a mission similar to Varia's and to provide space, resources and methods to these networks.
- * To move away from the ideological dichotomies that inform the adoption and use of technology, such as "old" versus "new" media, "low" versus "high" tech, "smart" versus "dumb" devices. We focus instead on notions like **appropriateness, frugality, accessibility, maintainance, and public interest**.
- * To **transform critical thinking into action** by explicitly engaging with technologies which do not rely on exploitative business models and which promote non-discriminatory standpoints.
- conversations -> points that are important | who feels comfortable with whom
- we met again to review and edit the documents
- ginger coons helped with the CoC, Femke Snelting helped with aims of the space
- we got paid
30 min - varia's CoC
5 min - intro
- make-up of varia: mainly PZI graduates + Luke
- motivations for CoC
- what is a CoC : A code of conduct is a document which sets out expectations for members of a community, with regard to how they will behave toward each other. (Geek Feminism)
- a number of incidents here and there...
- constant rra/mb invite NOOO1, zeitgeist
- CoC as part of formalising our organisation
- CoC popping up in technology communities
- goals of CoC:
-- to affirm the inclusivity and diversity of communities,
-- to facilitate the mediation of disagreements,
-- and to prevent and respond to cases of harassment.
- CoC comes from corporate background (from Femke Snelting's piece):
1. Historically, the term ‘Code of Conduct’ appears in relation to changing international business practice in the early 1990s. In the aftermath of state de-regulation and the globalisation of capital, transnational companies were pressured by NGOs and trade unions to adopt voluntary Codes of Conduct. In the absence of state control and international legal frameworks, this would, at least in theory, regulate their impact on social and environmental conditions. It is no surprise that the depoliticised mix of managerial and motivational language of these business codes rings through in documents adopted by projects such as Ubuntu and Python. Both projects operate in a US-based entrepreneurial environment.
2. A second influence is the informal tradition of ‘netiquette’ which circulated in the early days of the Internet. Reiterating the way etiquette functions as a framework to govern social interactions through behavioral norms, netiquette established a loose set of conventions that facilitated friction- free interaction over networks.5 Common-sensical advice such as “Remember that the recipient (of your e-mail) is a human being whose culture, language, and humor have different points of reference from your own,” has found its way into many Codes of Conduct.
3. Codes of Conduct are influenced by feminist and LGBTQ activism for Safe Spaces and also by anti-oppressive practices that try to address racism, sexism, homophobia and trans-phobia head on.6 These intersectional approaches to privileges and power can be found back in the language and methods of certain Codes of Conduct, such as the one adopted by FreeBSD.
5 min- EVENTS THAT HAPPENED AROUND COC
- Relearn 2019
- Collective Conditions 2019, standing on shoulders of peers, remixing, adaptations
- - where conducts of code came from
- - "scores for togetherness" (../Relearn): "Scores can be a plan, question, inspiration, (state of) play, structure, framework, libretto, (set of) tools, game (rules), substructure… Some scores are used to generate movement, some to suggest or define an approach to the act of performing."
- - executable feminist server table
- - bots table
- - Constant worksession on the conditions for/of collectivity and collaboration that took place from 8 until 16 November 2019
- - experimented with the generative potential of codes of conduct, complaints procedures, bug reports and copyleft licenses. We approached these socio-technical protocols as artistic and activist media and explored the role they could play in (different) imaginations of complex collectivities.
- - we gave lectures to different part of each other's bodies, we touched self-determined objects for orientation, talked about transformative justice, wrote manifestos of care, audio-visual gymnastics with an attention to consent giving while photographed, made acapella proto-anarcho post-punk operette
- - Varia was asked to make a contribution
5 min - other examples of CoC
- CoTech and online moderation (https://community.coops.tech/t/cotech-code-of-conduct/2459/5)
- - difficult to formalise smth without the executive part of it; maybe that's why apathy comes about formalising values; CoC as a formal document, if you don't have the exec power to enforce it, then that can build apathy towards the purpose of the doc because we don't have the future processes behind it
- - epic 9 hour fire debate on ethics and morality with a group that Luke didn't know (until 2.30am) and then the CoC never got approved and then the group disintegrated
- - doing one won't save you; it might not even help you
- Examples from other initiatives
- * Geek Feminism Code of Conduct Evaluation
- Important elements of an effective code of conduct include:
- Specific descriptions of common but unacceptable behavior (sexist jokes, etc.)
- Reporting instructions with contact information
- Information about how it may be enforced
- A clear demarcation between unacceptable behaviour (which may be reported per the reporting instructions and may have severe consequences for the perpetrator) and community guidelines such as general disagreement resolution.
- technical & social relation, how one influences the other; convivial tools ( http://conviviality.ouvaton.org/spip.php?article2 ); consent is key to privacy:
- XMPP Archive Incident (you can literally talk to or be your own sysadmin)
- feminist servers? The Sudo Incident +
- Etherpad welcome message (from opt-out to opt-in)
- Varia as unintentional service provider
- XMPP logbot and what can be archived (consent)
- Convivial Tools
- taking photos in the space
5 min Corona situation
- post-COVID situation https://pad.vvvvvvaria.org/post-covid > we applied for Stimu;
- pre-stimfonds introspective problem modelling; post-stimfonds meetings where we tried to find ways to support ppl who didn't get funded
- doubled down on infra work
- came up with 4 ppl in the space
- chat overload > move to email for important things
- solidarity financial model: use the donation we received from Alina Lupu to fund the contrib of ppl in case they couldn't pay it due to financial circumstances
- fighting the landlords - rent stop, rent payment ruling, self-organised mess
5 min future
- review and adapt going forward
- what would happen in case of violations / transformative justice
- "no silver bullet": the facilitating we do in meetings builds our skills, the strategies we use (check in at the start of the meeting, messaging a member privately if they feel , holding meetings to figure out how to support ) building capacity to do self-organising; day to day things that bring us into a position we can handle the nazi poster
- do you need this document? luke: it's the most effective as a backdrop, a place to refer to when things happen; it's an enabling tool;
place holder on wiki: https://wiki.vvvvvvaria.org/Professionalisation_process
Code_of_Conduct page on wiki: https://wiki.vvvvvvaria.org/Code_of_Conduct
= Questions =
* Why did we start this process (motivating factors for CoC, aims etc.)
* What was the budget and how was the split out (roughly)
* Timeline and how meetings were organised
* before prof / after prof check-list kinda thingy