VTTA Community Code of Conduct
The Vermont Technology Alliance (VTTA) Community is dedicated to our values of treating every individual with respect and dignity. In the interest of fostering an open and welcoming environment, all participants, including attendees, speakers, sponsors, volunteers, online contributors, VTTA board members, VTTA members, and VTTA employees are expected to show courtesy for each other and our community by creating a harassment-free experience for everyone, regardless of age, personal appearance, disability, ethnicity, gender identity and expression, body size, level of experience, nationality, race, religion, or sexual identity and orientation. Expected behavior applies to both online and offline engagement within the VTTA Community.
The VTTA community prioritizes marginalized people’s safety over privileged people’s comfort. The needs of the most vulnerable in any given situation will be prioritized.
The purpose of this Code of Conduct is to define and enforce the values and conduct of participants in the VTTA community. The Code of Conduct applies both within virtual and in-person spaces when an individual is engaging with the VTTA community. Examples include attending a VTTA event, either in-person or virtually; commentary on chat platforms including Zoom or Slack; posting via an official social media account, or acting as an appointed representative at an online or offline event.
Examples of behavior that contributes to creating a positive environment include:
• Using welcoming and inclusive language
• Being respectful of differing viewpoints, experiences, and cultures
• Gracefully accepting constructive criticism
• Focusing on what is best for the community
• Showing empathy towards other community members
• Being mindful of your surroundings and your fellow participants and listening to others
• Valuing the contributions of all participants
• Engaging in collaboration before conflict
• Pointing out unintentionally racist, sexist, or biased comments and jokes made by community members when/if they happen
Examples of unacceptable behavior by participants, even when presented as “ironic” or “joking,” include:
• The use of sexualized language or imagery and unwelcome physical contact, sexual attention, or advances
• Trolling, insulting/derogatory comments, and personal or political attacks
• Public or private harassment, including offensive or degrading language
• Publishing others’ private information, such as a physical or electronic address, without explicit permission. This includes any sort of “outing” of any aspect of someone’s identity without their consent.
• “Doxxing,” Publishing screenshots or quotes, especially from identity channels, private chat, or public events, without all quoted users’ explicit consent.
• Other conduct which could reasonably be considered inappropriate in a professional setting
Responsibilities & Enforcement
The entire VTTA community is responsible for upholding the terms of the Code of Conduct in VTTA Community events and spaces and reporting violations if they see them. The internal VTTA team is ultimately responsible for clarifying the standards of acceptable behavior and enforcement, and is expected to take appropriate and fair corrective action in response to any instances of unacceptable behavior.
Trained community member moderators at any given VTTA Event and in VTTA Slack, including both VTTA employees and non-VTTA employees, are the first line of defense for Code of Conduct enforcement. Their role is to flag and warn members of the community who commit minor or accidental code-of-conduct offenses, and to file Code of Conduct violation reports on the Code of Conduct violation form (https://forms.gle/hnMVwex2jrAMxTbE9). The VTTA team will maintain and monitor the internal Code of Conduct violation form. Employees, board members, and representatives of the VTTA must recuse themselves from deliberations regarding offenses they allegedly committed.
If a participant or contributor engages in negative or harmful behavior, VTTA will take any action they deem appropriate, including but not limited to issuing warnings, expulsion from an event with no refund, deleting comments, permanent banning from future events or online community, or calling local law enforcement. VTTA has the right and responsibility to remove, edit, or reject comments, and other contributions that are not aligned to this Code of Conduct, or to temporarily or permanently ban any participant for other behaviors that they deem inappropriate, threatening, offensive, or harmful.
If you see a Code of Conduct violation:
• If you feel comfortable, let the person know that what they did is not appropriate and ask them to stop and/or edit or delete their message(s) or comment(s).
• If the person does not immediately stop the behavior or correct the issue, or if you’re uncomfortable speaking up, flag a moderator and, if appropriate, fill out the anonymous Code of Conduct violation form (https://forms.gle/hnMVwex2jrAMxTbE9). All entries to this form will trigger an email to the Code of Conduct team. You can also send an email directly to [email protected].
• The VTTA Code of Conduct enforcement team will open an investigation upon receiving your form entry. When reporting, please include any relevant details, links, screenshots, context, or other information that may be used to better understand and resolve the situation.
If the Code of Conduct violation occurs at an event (either in-person or virtual) and requires immediate response or contains a concern about an individual attending an upcoming event, contact the event host listed in the description of the event. If you don’t feel comfortable speaking to the point of contact in person, fill out a Code of Conduct violation form entry (https://forms.gle/hnMVwex2jrAMxTbE9). and include the details of the event so that the Code of Conduct team can contact the event’s on-call host. You can also send an email directly to [email protected].
If a VTTA employee or representative witnesses a Code of Conduct violation at any time, such as at events, in a Slack channel, or other online forums, it is their responsibility to file a Code of Conduct violation report.