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Code of Conduct for RPG Projects
This Code of Conduct establishes that all members of this project have the right to a healthy and safe work environment. Projects with a Code of Conduct are productive projects. People work at their best when they have a clear expectation of acceptable behavior. This Code of Conduct states the following expectations for how project members will conduct themselves.
Respect and Equality: Team members will be treated fairly and with respect, without regard for gender/identity, race, nationality, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, neuro(a)typicality, physical appearance, religion or absence thereof. This includes equality in payment and work opportunities.
No Harassment: Team members will work in an environment free from physical, verbal, emotional, or sexual harassment. Demeaning, discriminatory, abusive, or harassing behavior will not be tolerated.
Boundaries: Individuals have the right to set boundaries for behavior and to ask for problematic behavior to immediately stop. Team members have a right to professional physical boundaries.
Sensitive Topics: If the project has to involve sensitive or uncomfortable topics, this should be clear when the project is first described to team members. Individuals have the right to express discomfort or sensitivity to topics and to request that the topics no longer be presented to them.
Professional Behavior: The work environment will be professional. The conditions and work offered to team members will be based on skill and professional factors. When team members are offered opportunities, they will not be contingent on anything other than professional considerations.
Examples of Unacceptable Behavior: Unacceptable behavior can include, but is not limited to, engaging in, advocating for, or encouraging any of the following:
- Violating Respect and Equality
- Sexist, racist, homophobic, transphobic, ableist, or otherwise discriminatory jokes and language.
- Inequality in pay or work opportunities
- Violating No Harassment
- Violence, threats of violence or violent language. This includes bullying or cyberbullying.
- Inappropriate physical contact. You must have someone’s consent before touching them.
- Unwelcome sexual attention. This includes sexualized comments or jokes, inappropriate touching, groping, or unwelcomed flirting or sexual advances.
- Deliberate intimidation, stalking or following (online or in person).
- Posting or threatening to post other people’s personally identifying information («doxing»).
- Violating Boundaries
- Requiring sharing a hotel room or travel with another team member or Project Owner
- Requiring party attendance
- Inappropriate photography or recording.
- Violating Sensitive Topics
- Posting or displaying sexually explicit or violent material.
- Creating project content that is offensive or otherwise violates the Code of Conduct
- Violating Professional Behavior
- Offering gifts, compensation, advancement, or opportunities for unprofessional reasons.
Witnessing Problematic Behavior
All team members are responsible for reporting any violation of this Code of Conduct that they witness, regardless of whether the improper conduct was directed at them. When a violation is witnessed, the following process should be followed*:
- SPEAK UP against the behavior as it’s happening, if you feel comfortable doing so – especially if it is directed at someone else. Ask the person(s) to cease the problematic behavior and remind them of the Code of Conduct. Remain calm and professional.
- DOCUMENT what took place with screen captures and first-hand accounts when possible. Note the date and time when it took place, the perpetrator, anyone else present, what was said, and whether this is an ongoing or repeat situation.
- REPORT what took place to the Project Owners or other responsible parties.
* If the situation includes a threat to someone’s physical safety, consider notifying law enforcement in accordance with local safety ordinances. These guidelines are never a substitute in such situations.
The Project Owner is expected to listen to and trust the person reporting the problematic behavior and the person(s) affected. The Project Owner and team members will respect those reporting a violation and those reporting a violation are never to be punished or harassed for reporting.
Receiving Feedback that your Behavior is Problematic
If the Project Owner or a team member says you violated the Code of Conduct:
- STOP the behavior. If necessary, take a break to think clearly.
- LISTEN to the team member and/or Project Owner reporting the issue.
- BE SELF-CRITICAL. Take the time to analyze your behavior and how it could have been problematic. Try to understand the perspective of the person reporting the problem.
- ACCEPT your actions. Take responsibility for what took place, even if it was not your intent. Apologize unconditionally and propose solutions.
- DO NOT ARGUE your actions with team members or attempt to garner support for your actions. Do not retaliate in any way against the victim or any other team members.
- UNDERSTAND that for severe or repeated problems, the Project Owner has the right to remove you from the project.
If the Project Owner violates the Code of Conduct, team members may report this to any higher management or to entities that collaborate or work with the product/project. This includes distributors, resellers, vendor and industry groups, conventions, and similar entities.
The Project Owner is responsible for taking corrective action, based on the severity of the incident. If the Project Owner reports to a higher authority, the Project Owner will coordinate corrective action with them.
The Project Owner will follow up with all involved parties and communicate the corrective action. If the resolution is not acceptable to team members, it is their right to leave the project. In this case they will be paid for all work they have done.
Corrective action should address and fully resolve the situation. At a minimum, the problematic behavior or situation should cease and all project participants should be reminded of the Code of Conduct. The project owner should retain all reports of the incident and the corrective action.
Credits and Acknowledgements
Development and Editing: Kenna Conklin.
We sincerely thank the following people who contributed to this Code of Conduct: Robin Abadia, JN Childs, Kenna Conklin, Paige Leitman, Sarah Pipkin, Hannah Rose, Chris Sims, Maria Turner.
The following sources were used as supporting materials in crafting this Code of Conduct:
Citizen Code of Conduct, A Project of Stumptown Syndicate, http://citizencodeofconduct.org/
Django Code of Conduct – Enforcement Manual, https://www.djangoproject.com/conduct/enforcement-manual/
Ireland, L. R. & Parry, M. H. (1982). Code of Ethics for Project Managers. Project Management Quarterly, 13(4), 39–44. https://www.pmi.org/learning/library/project-managers-code-of-ethics-10343
The Finnish Game Industry Code of Conduct, Neogames Finland. https://www.neogames.fi/the-finnish-game-industry-code-of-conduct/
Herald’s Guild Code of Conduct, used at Baldman Games conventions. http://heraldsguild.com/sample-page-2/code-of-conduct/
Google Code of Conduct.
Contributions and Latest Version
You may contribute ideas for improving this document, including variations of the document. To contribute ideas or find the latest version, please visit https://alphastream.org/index.php/code-of-conduct-for-rpg-projects/