[FOSDEM] It's time for a Code of Conduct

Pieter Hintjens ph at imatix.com
Fri Oct 30 14:19:11 CET 2015

On Fri, Oct 30, 2015 at 2:04 PM, Imifos <imifos at gmail.com> wrote:

> We are not speaking about a law, but about a "code of honor".

Indeed, yet honorable people need no code, and dishonorable ones treat
codes like toys to break. Fair and effective enforcement is a *very*
difficult task. Let's say I accuse someone of breaking the code, just
to get them into trouble?

> When you break the law, there is not even a question of what to do...

It takes knowledge to know what is criminal behavior, what the police
will accept, what counts as valid evidence, and what will eventually
be prosecuted. Few people enjoy spending hours writing a process

> This is about respect, awareness, open-mind, self-reflection and "making a
> statement of support".

We already have all that at FOSDEM and I don't think this would solve
the problems cited from last year... would it?

> A "team" would negotiate, calm down, set things clear between people, try to
> re-construct respect, pay the involved people a hot milk, and in "extreme"
> cases ask the organisers to kick someone out... abuse should be prevented by
> educated and civilised behaviour and common sense.

I'm sorry to be negative here, yet I must remind you of the venue.
There are no gates or ID checks at FOSDEM. I don't think it's
practical to suggest we implement them. There is no security service
to patrol the ground. There are no cameras to face detect offenders.
"Kicking someone out" sounds easy, it is not. (Even if you could
guarantee you were acting fairly.)


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