About Us

Digital Commonwealth Code of Conduct

Digital Commonwealth (DC) welcomes everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, religion, nationality, citizenship status, or professional status. We do not tolerate harassing speech or acts at DC-sponsored conferences, events, meetings, or in DC’s online spaces. Those who violate these rules will be asked to modify their behavior and may be sanctioned, asked to leave the space in which the incident took place, or expelled from the event at the discretion of the designated DC Community Advocate(s).

Definition & Examples

Criticism and rigorous examination of beliefs and viewpoints does not, by itself, constitute harassment or hostile conduct. Harassment is the act of subjecting an individual or group to hostile or prejudicial remarks or actions, pressuring or intimidating a person or persons such that they are made to feel unwelcome or unsafe in physical or virtual spaces. Examples of speech or actions that will not be tolerated include but are not limited to:

       Derogatory comments related to gender, gender identity and expression,  sexual orientation, disability, mental illness, neuro(a)typicality, physical  appearance, body size, race, religion, citizenship status, or professional status

       Unwelcome sexual attention

       Continued one-on-one communication after requests to cease

       Deliberate misgendering or use of ‘dead’ or rejected names

       Gratuitous or off-topic sexual images or behavior in spaces where they’re not  appropriate

       Sustained disruption of discussion

       Deliberate “outing” of any aspect of a person’s identity without their consent,  except as necessary to protect other DC members or other vulnerable people  from intentional abuse

       Physical contact and simulated physical contact without consent or after a  request to stop

       Threats of violence

       Incitement of violence towards any individual, including encouraging a person  to commit suicide or to engage in self-harm

       Deliberate intimidation

       Stalking as defined by law


Any participant in a DC event or DC virtual or physical space who experiences or witnesses conduct they believe violates the DC Code of Conduct is encouraged to report the incident either personally or anonymously (see details below) to the organization.

If you are reporting a violation after the conclusion of an event and/or are unable to find a designated CA to speak with, you may contact report@digitalcommonwealth.org, or complete our online incident report form. The form may be completed either with contact information or anonymously.

Making a Personal Report

If you witness or experience harassment you believe violates the DC Code of Conduct, and are comfortable speaking to a DC representative personally, please report the incident as soon as possible to the designated DC CA(s) responsible for the event or space in which the violation occurred.

If you feel that you are in immediate danger at any time contact law enforcement (by dialing 911) or, if applicable, the facility front desk without delay.

At the DC Conference

Go to the meeting registration and ask the DC representative there to contact the designated CA(s) on duty. You may be asked for a cell phone number at which the CA can reach you.

Other DC Events

Discuss any concerns with the designated CA, instructor, moderator and/or contact report@digitalcommonwealth.org.

In DC Online Spaces

Contact the website administrator or report@digitalcommonwealth.org, or complete an incident report.

Anonymous Reporting

Anyone may submit an anonymous report of conduct they believe violates the DC Code of Conduct by completing this incident report form. These reports are collected, reviewed, and documented by the DC Board.

While we will be unable to follow up with you directly in the case of an anonymous report, DC will monitor such reports for incident patterns and do what we can to ensure the issue is addressed.

Addressing Violations

DC CAs have received bystander intervention training and been given guidance in how to respond to Code of Conduct violations. They are also responsible for submitting written incident reports to the DC Board.

CAs’ first responsibility is to ensure the physical and emotional safety of the individual or individuals experiencing harassment. If appropriate, the CA will put the individual in contact with local law enforcement or local support services, provide escorts, or otherwise ensure the individual feels safe for the duration of the event.

CAs have a number of options for responding to Code of Conduct violations, depending upon the nature and severity of the violation. CAs are empowered to take immediate action to address the violation by supporting the targeted individuals, requesting an immediate cessation or change in harassing behavior, issuing a verbal warning, and/or if necessary asking the violator to leave the event or space in question. Conference, event, meeting, and online participants who are asked to stop any harassing behavior are expected to comply immediately. Those who violate the DC Code of Conduct may be expelled from the conference, event, or meeting at the discretion of the responding CAs, or may be denied access to the online space at the discretion of the site administrator.

All such actions will be documented by the CA as an incident report and submitted to the DC Board. Reports will be reviewed by the DC Board and follow-up action(s) will be taken when necessary.

Appeals Process

If a person believes they have been wrongly found to be in violation of the DC Code of Conduct and as a result of that finding has been expelled from or denied access to DC spaces or events, that person may appeal to the DC Board. To initiate such an appeal, please contact report@digitalcommonwealth.org.

Communication at Conferences or Events

The short-form DC Code of Conduct which includes the Definition & Reporting sections will be included in registration materials for each DC-sponsored conference, event, and/or meeting in program booklets and displayed at registration tables. All participants including presenters, workshop leaders, exhibitors, or others involved in the conference, event, or meeting will be asked to review and acknowledge the DC Code of Conduct upon registration and/or when confirming attendance. The long-form DC Code of Conduct which includes all sections of this document will be available upon request to meeting attendees at the registration table.

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