Why does Remotive have a Code of Conduct?

Ensuring that everyone at Remotive feels included is a big priority for us. That’s why creating a framework for expected behaviors is something we feel is important for our continued work on inclusion.

Remotive's Code of Conduct

Remotive is dedicated to creating an inclusive environment for everyone, regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, color, national origin, age, disability (physical or mental), sexual orientation, gender identity, parental status, marital status, and political affiliation as well as gender expression, mental illness, socioeconomic status or background, neuro(a)typicality, or physical appearance. We’re united by Remotive’s values, and we celebrate our unique differences.

We put forth this code of conduct not because we anticipate bad behavior, but because we believe in the already exceptional level of respect among the team. We believe that articulating our values and accountabilities to one another reinforces that respect and provides us with clear avenues to correct our culture should it ever stray. We commit to enforce and evolve this code as our team grows.

Like our Remotive values, the contents of this code of conduct are concepts we expect clients to work to apply to their daily lives inside Remotive. Specifically, the code of conduct applies to clients interactions in various areas of our shared professional lives, including all events hosted by Remotive, shared online spaces (Slack, Discourse, email, etc.) , social media, feedback, and other events.

Expected behaviors

Every Remotive client is expected to be considerate of fellow community members and contribute to a collaborative, positive, and healthy environment in which we can all succeed.

  • Specifically: Be supportive of other community members, both proactively and responsively. Offer to help if you see someone struggling or otherwise in need of assistance (taking care not to be patronizing or disrespectful). If someone approaches you looking for help, be generous with your time; if you’re too busy, let them know when you will be able to help or direct them to someone else who may be of assistance.
  • Be inclusive: Go out of your way and across cultures to include people in team jokes or memes; we want to build an environment free of cliques. Avoid slang or idioms that might not translate across cultures, or be deliberate in explaining them to share our diverse cultures and languages. Speak plainly and avoid acronyms and jargon that not everyone may have an understanding of.
  • Be respectful toward all time zones: Embrace habits that are inclusive and productive for community members wherever they are and pay attention to timezones when scheduling events.
  • Be kind: Be polite and friendly in all forms of communication – especially remote communication, where opportunities for misunderstanding are greater. Avoid sarcasm. Tone is hard to decipher online; make liberal use of emoji and GIFs to aid in communication. Use video hangouts when it makes sense; face-to-face discussion benefits from all kinds of social cues that may go missing in other forms of communication.

Unacceptable behaviors

The Remotive team is committed to providing a welcoming and safe environment for all. Discrimination and harassment are expressly prohibited. Furthermore, any behavior or language that is unwelcoming—whether or not it rises to the level of harassment—is also strongly discouraged.

Additionally, there are a host of behaviors and language common on tech teams which are worth noting as specifically unwelcome:

  • No surprise if another community member isn’t familiar with something: At Remotive, we believe in the value of a beginner’s mind. It’s always acceptable to say “I don’t know” or “I don’t understand.” All questions are great questions! So please don’t act surprised when people aren’t familiar with a tool, person, place or process.
  • No well-actually’s: A well-actually happens when someone says something that’s almost – but not entirely – correct, and you say, “well, actually…” and give a minor correction. We strive to let others save face as part of our values, and most well-actually’s aren’t crucial to the overall conversation. If it’s critical to add your correction, use language that leaves room for the idea that you might be wrong or missing some context, too.)
  • No exclusionary language: Be careful in the words that you choose, even if it’s as small as choosing “hey, everyone” over “hey, guys.” Sexist, racist, ableist, and other exclusionary jokes are not appropriate and will not be tolerated under any circumstances. Any language that is unwelcoming—whether or not it rises to the level of harassment—is also strongly discouraged.
  • No subtle -isms: Much exclusionary behavior takes the form of subtle -isms, or microaggressions – small things that make others feel unwelcome. For example, saying “It’s so easy my grandmother could do it” is a subtle -ism with tones of both sexism and ageism. Regardless of intent, these comments can have a significant demeaning impact on teammates. If you see a subtle -ism, you can point it out to the relevant person, @vic on Slack.

Reporting a problem

These guidelines are ambitious, and we’re not always going to succeed in meeting them. When something goes wrong—whether it’s a microaggression or an instance of harassment—there are a number of things you can do to make sure the situation is addressed.

Most recommended: Talk to a member of the Remotive Team (@vic on Slack). We take concerns about this stuff seriously. We are here for you to discuss the problem and we will figure out what steps to take next.

Taking care of each other

Sometimes, you’ll be a witness to something that seems like it isn’t aligned with our community values. Err on the side of caring for fellow community members in situations like these. Even if an incident seems minor, reach out to the person impacted by it to check in. We’d also appreciate it if you would speak to a member of the Remotive Team (@vic on Slack) to voice your concerns.

Repeated or severe violations of this code can and will be addressed by the Remotive team, and can lead to disciplinary actions, including exclusion without reimbursment.

  • This Is A Safe Space: Due to the sensitive nature of many of these discussions, please keep what is said in these spaces - whether online or in person - confidential unless you receive permission otherwise. Always ask the original poster or speaker if they would feel comfortable having their post or experience shared.
  • Zero Tolerance For Hateful Messages & Actions: Each of our members plays a role in establishing and promoting a positive, inclusive, and encouraging community. Discussions, posts, actions, or comments that promote hatred of any kind - including, but not limited to, racism, sexism, transphobia, homophobia, biphobia, queerphobia, ableism, and ageism - are not acceptable in Remotive and may result in you being removed from online spaces.
  • We take every report of hatred, violence, and harassment seriously and we prioritize working with those affected to determine what the next steps should be. If someone is found to have broken the Tech Ladies code of conduct, they will be excluded from our communty(ies) without reimbursment.

Note: This has been adapted from Buffer’s Code of Conduct - read up about it over here! We’re grateful for other Code of Conduct pioneers like the Vox Code of Conduct, the Recurse Center’s Social Rules and the Hack Code of Conduct for their ideas and inspiration. Also, hat/tip to Tech Ladies!