Soft Skills Engineering Slack Team Incident Process

Things Sometimes Go Sideways

In any group of humans, things will sometimes go sideways. Whether it’s simple unintentional miscommunication or more extreme unacceptable behavior, we need to have an agreed upon protocol to resolve these situations ourselves or to escalate in the case that one-to-one resolutions are unachievable.

This is the process for incident resolution at Soft Skills Engineering Slack and process is documented culture.

The Process

Resolve Peacefully

When an incident occurs, we ask that per the Code of Conduct for those involved to resolve peacefully:

“If you see someone violating any part of this Code of Conduct, we urge you to respectfully dissuade them from such behavior. Expect that others in the community wish to help keep the community respectful, and welcome your input in doing so.”

This is easier said than done, but this is the Soft Skills Engineering Slack. Our expectations are that everyone here is hoping to learn about the craft of soft skills; peaceful resolution of complex human situations is an essential soft skill.

Escalation

Resolution amongst the individuals will not always be achievable. In this case, the reporter or observer of the incident has a choice. They can share the incident with #slack-rules to seek feedback, and perhaps resolve the incident, or they can raise the incident with the Administrators (see below for specifics). We understand the need for the latter workflow, but we encourage the former because, again, this is a community focused on soft skills. Our hope is that the debate will help educate this sub-community of humans interested in the rules and culture that govern this small corner of the Internet.

There are two paths in reporting an incident to an Administrator: filing a formal complaint and raising a concern. For a formal complaint, the reporter needs to send an Administrator a direct message with the following information:

  1. What’s the nature of the incident or Code of Conduct violation?
  2. Who is involved in this incident?
  3. What material supports this situation?
  4. Any privacy concerns? (Reporter consent is required before sharing any information regarding the incident)

The second reporting path is raising a concern. We ask the reporter provide the same information with the understanding the reporter is not looking for resolution, but wants to provide Administrators a heads up regarding behavior within the community.

For both paths, with this information in hand, the Administrators will strive to respond to the reporter as quickly as possible with an estimate of when they think they’ll be able to triage and resolve this incident. In the case of a raised concern, the understanding is there may be no action other than administrative awareness.

In extreme cases involving formal complaints, the Administrator may suspend one or more accounts until they are able to triage and resolve an incident.

Incident resolution can vary from hours to days depending on the availability of those involved. Once the incident is resolved, the Administrators will communicate the resolution to the reporter and other parties relevant to the incident.

Incidents are confidential. The administrator will not provide any information to parties not involved in an incidents. The lone exception is the case where an incident occurs in a public channel, the administrator will consult those involved in the incident before disclosing any information.

Appeal of Account Suspension

In cases that result in account suspension, the individual suspended may appeal the decision starting one week after the suspension by sending a mail to an Administrator with justification for overturning the appeal. If a suspension is overturned, the new context will be shared with #slack-rules

FAQ:

  • “Is situation XYZ an incident?” Unsure if there’s a CoC violation? Ask in #slack-rules and/or DM the administrator. We’ll help.
  • “How many incidents have you handled since this place started?” None as of June 2019.

Administrators

The administrator(s) of the Soft Skills Engineering Slack as of June 18th, 2019:

@jamison (Jamison Dance)

V1.0 of this Code of Conduct was published on June 18th, 2019.

This Code of Conduct is released under the CC0 public domain license.