1. Purpose

A primary goal of Code for Philly is to reflect the diversity of the City of Philadelphia. As such, we are committed to providing a friendly, safe and welcoming environment for all, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, mental and/or physical ability, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, age, and religion (or lack thereof).

This code of conduct outlines our expectations for all those who participate in our community, as well as consequences for unacceptable behavior that contributes to making anyone feel unsafe or unwelcome in our community.

We invite all those who participate in Code for Philly to help us create safe and positive experiences for everyone.

2. Good Tech and Open Source Citizenship

A supplemental goal of this Code of Conduct is to increase good tech and open source citizenship by encouraging participants to recognize and strengthen the relationships between our actions and their effects on our community.

Communities mirror the societies in which they exist and positive action is essential to counteract the many forms of inequality and abuses of power that exist in society.

If you see someone who is making an extra effort to ensure our community is welcoming, friendly, and encourages all participants to contribute to the fullest extent, we want to know.

3. Expected Behavior

The following behaviors are expected and requested of all community members:

  • Participate in an authentic and active way. In doing so, you contribute to the health and longevity of this community.
  • Exercise consideration and respect in your speech and actions.
  • Attempt collaboration before conflict.
  • Refrain from demeaning, discriminatory, or harassing behavior and speech. For more details and examples, see section 5.
  • Help us maintain an environment that encourages social entrepreneurship and civic mindedness.
  • Do not assume someone has a specific skill, experience, or education or judge them based on a perceived lack in any of those areas. Instead, help us inspire productivity in our fellow community members regardless of specific skill.
  • Refrain from policing community membership based on location. We define “Philly” broadly to include those who live, work, or visit Philadelphia as well as the towns and suburbs neighboring the city.
  • Be mindful of your surroundings and of your fellow participants. Alert community leaders if you notice a dangerous situation, someone in distress, or violations of this Code of Conduct, even if they seem inconsequential.
  • Remember that community event venues may be shared with members of the public; please be respectful to all patrons of these locations.

4. Projects

Code for Philly aims to foster a community interested in volunteering their time and energy for the betterment of Philly. Given that volunteer projects are a significant programming component, we ask that community members’ projects or ideas align to the following guidelines to have access to our community members and their expertise.

  • Non profit
  • Motivated by civic and/or social good
  • Publicly accessible
  • Open source with an appropriate open source license

5. Unacceptable Behavior

The following behaviors are considered harassment and are unacceptable within our community:

  • Violence, threats of violence or violent language directed against another person.
  • Sexist, racist, homophobic, transphobic, ableist or otherwise discriminatory jokes and language.
  • Posting or displaying sexually explicit or violent material.
  • Posting or threatening to post other people’s personally identifying information (“doxing”).
  • Personal insults, particularly those related to gender, sexual orientation, race, age, religion, or physical and/or mental disability.
  • Inappropriate or non-consensual photography or recording.
  • Inappropriate physical contact. You need to have someone’s consent before touching them.
  • Unwelcome sexual attention. This includes, sexualized comments or jokes; inappropriate touching, groping, and unwelcome sexual advances.
  • Deliberate intimidation, stalking or following (online or in person).
  • Deliberate silencing of other community members in the form of constant interruption, undermining the thoughts and opinions of others, or otherwise perpetuating demeaning commentary
  • Advocating for, encouraging, or any form of tolerating any of the above behavior.
  • Sustained disruption of community events, including talks and presentations.

6. Solicitation and Job Posting Policy

Code for Philly is a community that has grown considerably and as such our Slack and MeetUp pages are easy ways to communicate to a sizable group of people. We have a dedicated #jobs channel where we allow members of the community, who have shown an interest and investment in the community’s continued success and growth, can post job-related information. In general the rule is to give back to the community before you endeavor to take from the community. Code for Philly organizers reserve the right to block or remove any job posting.

7. Political Action Policy

Code for Philly does not and will not endorse any candidate in local, state, or federal elections. While some issues truly are one sided, we will make every effort to be nonpartisan in instances where doing so won’t come at the expense of our institutional and personal values. We ask that community members refrain from campaigning for any candidate at Code for Philly events or on any Code for Philly social platforms. Sharing information on events centered on legislation, grassroots protesting, or community-based organizing is allowed. If time at a Code for Philly event is ever given to a candidate running for political office, every effort will be made to give equitable time to their opponent or opponents so long as giving them a platform does not come at the expense of our institutional and personal values.

8. Consequences of Unacceptable Behavior

Unacceptable behavior from any community member, including sponsors and those with decision-making authority, will not be tolerated.

Anyone asked to stop unacceptable behavior is expected to comply immediately. If a community member engages in unacceptable behavior, the community organizers may take any action they deem appropriate, up to and including a temporary ban or permanent expulsion from the community without warning (and without refund in the case of a paid event).

9. Reporting Guidelines

If you are subject to or witness unacceptable behavior, or have any other concerns, please notify a leadership team member as soon as possible. If you can not identify a leadership team member in the moment you can email safespace@codeforphilly.org.

Leadership team members are available to help community members engage with local law enforcement or to otherwise help those experiencing unacceptable behavior feel safe. In the context of in-person events, organizers will also provide escorts as desired by the person experiencing distress.

10. Violation Process

If a member of the community is found to be in violation of Code for Philly’s code of conduct, they will be informed in writing by the leadership team. If the individual is not an immediate threat to the community, they will be issued a warning. If, after receiving an initial warning, the individual is found to have violated the code of conduct a second time, that individual can be expelled from the organization. When expelled, they will be removed from the Code for Philly website and all subsequent social media platforms. They will not be permitted to attend any Code for Philly events. Consideration will be given at all times to the severity of a given code of conduct violation. If it is in the best interest of the community for an individual to immediately be expelled from Code for Philly, it is the discretion of the leadership team to do so.

If the person you feel is in violation of the code of conduct is a leadership team member, contact Code for America at safespace@codeforamerica.org. They will take over from there and involve Code for Philly’s leadership only as they deem it’s appropriate to do so.

If you feel you have been falsely or unfairly accused of violating this Code of Conduct, you should notify the Code for Philly leadership team with a concise description of your grievance.

11. Scope

We expect all community participants (contributors, paid or otherwise; sponsors; and other guests) to abide by this Code of Conduct in all community venues–online and in-person–as well as in all one-on-one communications pertaining to community business.

This code of conduct and its related procedures also applies to unacceptable behavior occurring outside the scope of community activities when such behavior has the potential to adversely affect the safety and well-being of community members.

12. Contact info

Rich McMillen, Co-Director: rmcmillen@codeforphilly.org

Toni McIntyre, Co-Director: tmcintyre@codeforphilly.org

Additionally, you can email safespace@codeforphilly.org.

13. License and attribution

This Code of Conduct is distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license.

Portions of text derived from the Django Code of Conduct and the Geek Feminism Anti-Harassment Policy.