Jun 06 2019
Jun 06

One of the chartered responsibilities of the Drupal Community Working Group (CWG) is to work to develop and support community initiatives that promote the health of the Drupal community and help to prevent conflict and burnout. One of the ways that we do this is by organizing workshops designed to provide community leaders with the knowledge, tools, and resources they need to help keep our community a friendly and welcoming place.

Following feedback from last year’s Teamwork and Leadership workshop at DrupalCon Nashville, we decided to narrow the focus and audience for our next workshop. One of the things we’ve observed over the last year in the Drupal community is that many of the issues we’ve seen have had to do with communication breakdowns between various individuals and groups. Following internal discussion in late 2018, we decided that one way to begin addressing this issue was by bringing together leaders in the community representing different groups and interests for a workshop focused on communication skills at DrupalCon Seattle.

In early 2019, we interviewed a number of potential facilitators suggested by Drupal Association board chair Adam Goodman and selected Megan Bernard, a professor of communication studies who specializes in promoting meaningful and inclusive learning and collaboration. Based on Prof. Bernard’s recommendation, we decided to spread this year’s workshop out over two days (April 10-11) in a dedicated meeting room provided by the Drupal Association, who generously covered all fees and expenses.

After finalizing the logistics, we then reached out to those who had attended last year’s workshop, as well as additional community members involved with community governance, camp organizing, core and contrib maintainers, the Drupal Security Team, Drupal Diversity & Inclusion, and the Drupal Association. The workshop facilitator suggested that we keep the size of the workshop to around 20 people, focusing on individuals who are well-connected in the community in hopes that they can help distribute the lessons learned in the workshop. 17 people attended some or all of the first day of the workshop, and 18 attended some or all of the second. In total, community members from 10 different countries spread across 4 different continents were represented.

Day one of the workshop included introductions, a discussion of needs, assets, and challenges faced by various groups within the Drupal community, and a discussion of shared context and perspective. We talked about different ways that other online communities help communicate context about their users, such as identifying the primary language, pronouns, and location in comment threads. During our discussion, Neil Drumm pointed out there was already an active issue led by justafish and others to allow users to display this kind of information, and one of the first action items we agreed on was helping it get implemented on Drupal.org as quickly as possible.

Another topic of discussion centered around creating pre-written template responses that maintainers and/or other privileged users could use in issue threads to “nudge” users in the right direction and realign communication when conversations start trending away from our community standards. We discussed badges and other ways to promote positive communication in our issues threads and other community spaces. In addition, we also talked about better ways to on-board new members into the project and foster an ongoing sense of community. One insight was that small cohorts of 6-8 people are far more effective than 1:1 mentoring at building community engagement.

In our second day, we dug more deeply into the concepts of emotional intelligence, de-escalation practices, and different forms of conflict. One of our exercises was a case study challenge, where different groups were tasked with finding different ways to resolve typical kinds of conflicts often seen in Drupal and other open source communities.

We also spent time talking about different ways to apply some of the things we had learned to our own community, and next steps. We agreed as a group to focus on three main areas:

  1. Setting context in issue queues. This work had already been mostly completed in https://www.drupal.org/node/2961229 so it was really just a matter of working with DA staff to get it implemented on Drupal.org.

  2. Nudges. A group of us decided to do more research into pre-written templates to use in issue queues, forums, and Slack to gently steer things back in the right direction when conversations were starting to go in a negative direction.

  3. Improving Drupal.org user on-boarding and cohorts. In addition to better identifying new users on the site, we agreed to look into various ways to help community members join small cohorts, organized by industry, technology, geography, or other criteria. We felt it was important that this be an opportunity that’s open to existing community members as well as new ones.

The folks assigned to each area agreed to find a time to meet in the coming weeks and to involve other interested community members as well. The CWG also identified several opportunities to improve and streamline its internal processes and communication practices.

By developing and communicating best practices that can be shared across the community, the hope is that we can help build structures for self-guided conflict resolution among community members and support more effective communication overall.

Apr 25 2019
Apr 25

Earlier this month at DrupalCon Seattle, the Drupal Community Working Group (CWG) announced plans to begin the process of reviewing the Drupal Code of Conduct. The Drupal Code of Conduct, which is maintained and upheld by the CWG, governs interactions between community members. It is distinct from the DrupalCon Code of Conduct, which governs interactions at DrupalCon and other in-person events and is maintained and enforced by Drupal Association staff.

The current Drupal Code of Conduct was adopted in 2010 and last revised in 2014. Over the last two years, the CWG has received consistent feedback from the community that the Drupal Code of Conduct should be updated so that it is clearer and more actionable:

  • A set of recommendations for improving the Code of Conduct was shared as one of the high-level findings from the community discussions facilitated by Whitney Hess in April and May 2017.

  • 63% of respondents to a community governance survey held in July 2017 said that updating our codes of conduct should be prioritized as part of the process of overhauling community governance.

  • Improving the community code of conduct so that it is clearer and more actionable was also one of the key takeaways of the community governance discussions that occurred in the fall of 2017.

Over the last year, the CWG has been working on implementing changes to its charter to make the group more accountable to the community-at-large and provide a sustainable foundation for future growth. Now that those changes are complete, the CWG is now able to shift focus to the process of reviewing and improving the Drupal Code of Conduct.

To that end, we have set up a survey at https://forms.gle/rhKHorXXnp3wPQn2A for community members to share their thoughts, both about the current Code of Conduct and the next steps in the process. The results of this survey will help the CWG determine how, when, and who is involved in reviewing and updating the Code of Conduct.

We will be accepting responses through May 31, 2019, and we encourage as many community members to participate as possible.

Jan 05 2019
Jan 05

The Drupal Community Working Group is pleased to announce that nominations for the 2019 Aaron Winborn Award are now open. This annual award recognizes an individual who demonstrates personal integrity, kindness, and above-and-beyond commitment to the Drupal community. It will include a scholarship and stipend to attend DrupalCon and recognition in a plenary session at the event.

Nominations are open to not only well-known Drupal contributors, but also people who have made a big impact in their local or regional community. If you know of someone who has made a big difference to any number of people in our community, we want to hear about it. The winner of the award will receive a $1200 USD DrupalCon travel stipend as well as a ticket to DrupalCon. 

This award was created in honor of long-time Drupal contributor Aaron Winborn, whose battle with Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) (also referred to as Lou Gehrig's Disease) came to an end on March 24, 2015. Based on a suggestion by Hans Riemenschneider, the Community Working Group, with the support of the Drupal Association, launched the Aaron Winborn Award.

Nominations are open until March 1, 2019. A committee consisting of the Community Working Group members and past award winners will select a winner from the nominations. Current members of the CWG and previous winners are exempt from winning the award.

Previous winners of the award are:

2015: Cathy Theys
2016: Gábor Hojtsy
2017: Nikki Stevens
2018: Kevin Thull

If you know someone amazing who should benefit from this award you can make your nomination here.
 

Dec 05 2018
Dec 05

The Values & Principles Committee has formed and has started its work. It has started by looking at Principle 8.

Principle 8: Every person is welcome; every behavior is not

The Drupal community is a diverse group of people from a wide variety of backgrounds. Supporting diversity, equity, and inclusion is important not just because it is the right thing to do but because it is essential to the health and success of the project. The people who work on the Drupal project should reflect the diversity of people who use and work with the software.  In order to do this, our community needs to build and support local communities and Drupal events in all corners of the world. Prioritizing accessibility and internationalization is an important part of this commitment.

The expectation of the entire Drupal community is to be present and to promote dignity and respect for all community members. People in our community should take responsibility for their words and actions and the impact they have on others.

Our community is, by default, accepting with one exception: we will not accept intolerance. Every person is welcome, but every behavior is not. Our community promotes behaviors and decisions that support diversity, equity, and inclusion and reduce hatred, oppression, and violence. We believe that safety is an important component of dignity and respect, and we encourage behaviors that keep our community members safe. Our Code of Conduct is designed to help communicate these expectations and to help people understand where they can turn for support when needed.

Why are we doing this?

As Dries said, when announcing the first iteration of the Drupal Values & Principles, the Drupal project has had a set of Values & Principles for a very long time. Historically, they were mostly communicated by word of mouth and this meant that some in our community were more aware of them than others.

Writing down the Values & Principles was a great first step. What we need to do now is continually refine the common understanding of these Values & Principles across our whole community and ensure that they are built-in to everything we do.

How will we work?

The Values & Principles are held very closely to the heart of the members of our community and we absolutely recognise that any work on them must be inclusive, clear, structured and accountable.

We are, therefore, going to be open about the work we are doing. While there are members of a committee that will focus on this task, it is not the committee’s job to make decisions “behind closed doors”. Instead, the committee is responsible for enabling the whole community to refine and communicate our common Values & Principles.

We will record actions and progress in the Drupal Governance Project so that all in our community will be able to have the necessary input.

How will we communicate?

We will continue to post updates on the Drupal Community Blog and, as already mentioned, you will always be able to see and, most importantly, participate in issues in the Governance Project. We even have a board on ContribKanban!

Who is on the committee?

Hussain Abbas (hussainweb) works as an Engineering Manager at Axelerant. He started writing programs in 1997 for school competitions and never stopped. His work focus is helping people architect solutions using Drupal and enforcing best practices. He also participates in the local developer community meetup for PHP in general and Drupal in particular. He often speaks at these events and camps in other cities.

Alex Burrows (aburrows), from UK, is the Technical Director of Digidrop and has over 10 years working in Drupal, as well as an avid contributor and a member of the Drupal Community Working Group. As well as this he is a DrupalCamp London Director and Organizer and the author of Drupal 8 Blueprints book.

Jordana Fung (jordana) is a freelance, full-stack Drupal developer from Suriname, a culturally diverse country where the main language is Dutch. She has been steadily increasing her participation in the Drupal community over the past few years and currently has a role on the Drupal Community Working Group. She loves to spend her time learning new things, meeting new people and sharing knowledge and ideas.

Suchi Garg (gargsuchi), living in Melbourne Australia is a Tech Lead at Salsa Digital. She has been a part of the Drupal community for more than 12 years as a site builder, developer, contributor, mentor, speaker and trainer. She had been a part of the Indian community before moving to Australia and is now an active Drupal community down under.

John Kennedy (johnkennedy), lives in Boston, works as a Product Manager for AWS. Over 10 years in Drupal as a site-builder, developer, speaker and on the business side. Co-organiser of Drupal Camp London 2012-2015. PM for Acquia Lightning and the Drupal 8 Module Acceleration Program.

Rachel Lawson (rachel_norfolk), UK and the Community Liaison at the Drupal Association will finally be providing logistical support to the committee and helping wherever she can. Having been in the Drupal community for 11 years as a site builder, a contributor and a mentor, she has had opportunity to experience how the community understands its collective Values & Principles.

In order to be as transparent and forthcoming as possible we wanted to address the fact that there are currently 2 CWG members on the committee. The initial call for people to join the Values & Principles committee happened at the same time as the Community Working Group was calling for new members and, as luck would have it, Alex Burrows applied for both.

In October 2018 a current member of the CWG, Jordana Fung joined the Values & Principles committee and at same time he was being vetted for potential membership to the CWG, Alex joined the Values & Principles committee as well. After the vetting process, Alex officially became a member of the CWG in November. So as it stands now, there are 2 CWG members on the V&P committee.

There are a few possible options going forward, some are:

  • Both CWG members continue for now (whilst the V&P committee is in the very early formation stages) and then possibly:
    • One member drops off
    • They act as a team and only one member (whichever is available) participates in meetings
  • The CWG decides which member is on the VP committee
    • We may need to add another member to the VP committee to take the place of the member that will no longer attend.

So, what’s next?

We have started by compiling a summary of feedback from the community so far that relates to the project’s Values & Principles from such places as the Whitney Hess Interviews, community-led conversations around governance and some anonymized feedback from the Governance Taskforce. We will be adding this summary to an issue in the project.

Call to action

We recognize, though, that what we really want to understand is how you understand what we already have written in Principle 8. THis is how we intend to do that…

The members of the committee have each written stories from their own memories of the Drupal community that demonstrate Principle 8 in action.

We invite you all to write your own stories, from your memories of the Drupal community, other tech communities or indeed any other aspect of life, that demonstrate Principle 8 to you. You should add your story to this issue we have created:

Add my story about Principle 8

One thing we do ask, though, is that you only add your own stories (as many as you like!) and NOT comment or question others’ stories. All stories are valid.

By the end of the year, we hope to have a rich set of stories that show how we, as a global community, interpret Principle 8 and we can then look to see if any changes need to be made to the words or, maybe, it is more a case of linking the Principle to the stories or providing other statements supporting Principle 8.

Nov 21 2018
Nov 21

The Drupal Community Working Group is happy to announce the addition of Alex Burrows (aburrows). Based in Surrey, United Kingdom, Alex has been contributing to the Drupal project and community for more than a decade. He is one of the lead organizers of Drupalcamp London, and a frequent speaker at other Drupal events. Alex also serves as a volunteer police constable in his local community.

The CWG would also like to announce that both Josef Dabernig (dasjo) and Manjit Singh (Manjit.Singh) have agreed to serve as Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) to the CWG. SMEs are not full members of the group, but can be called upon on an as-needed basis for issues that might require specific knowledge or expertise. SMEs are subject to the same Code of Ethics as full members of the CWG.

Adam Hill and Emma Karayannis are also officially stepping down as members of the CWG. We would like to thank both Adam and Emma for their invaluable contributions to the group and for their ongoing contributions to the Drupal community.

The CWG continues to seek new members and SMEs as it seeks to increase the diversity of its membership. It is our hope that by expanding our membership, the CWG will be able to better serve the community in a more proactive manner. If you think you or someone you know might be a good fit for the CWG and are interested in learning more, please reach out to us via email at [email protected].

In other news, the CWG recently proposed a set of changes to its charter to address feedback and concerns raised by the community over the last year and a half. We are accepting feedback from the community through November 23 before finalizing the proposal.

The CWG is responsible for promoting and upholding the Drupal Code of Conduct and maintaining a friendly and welcoming community for the Drupal project. To learn more about the group and what we’ve been up to over the last year, check out our recently-published annual report.

Nov 08 2018
Nov 08

This is a public update on the work of the Governance Task Force.

Drupal is one of the most successful open source projects in the world. Governance is fundamental to the project's success.

The community and the code has been built from the ground up. And as the code has grown, so has the community.

When communities are first emerging it's easy to bring newcomers along, but over time the community begins to mature, change, and then needs to adapt. Challenges and opportunities emerge as evolution occurs, and our community needs to navigate them strategically.

A Governance Task Force has been meeting weekly since May to put together the strategic proposal we now share with you. We've synthesized ideas, discussions, and experiences from people we've interviewed, and we've revisited the themes that emerged from the community listening project run by Whitney Hess and by previous governance discussions.

This Drupal Governance Task Force 2018 Proposal serves two purposes.

Firstly, it's clear that for community evolution to occur there needs to be broad agreement and buy-in. People are comfortable jumping in and building a new module, but community change and action is hard. People talked to us openly about the unclear processes and barriers holding back community progress.

We heard strong perceptions that support from Dries or the Drupal Association is needed before initiatives could be created or scaled; real or otherwise, this is affecting community progress and action. Speaking to people from the Drupal Association, the Community Working Group and other initiative leaders, they also feel limitations. But to change their terms of reference and priorities they also need to have a community directive.

The community is stronger and more influential than we sometimes assume  --- when we are speaking together.

That's why at the heart of this proposal is a new community governance structure.

The second purpose of the proposal is to create a starting point --- a framework. We’ve been practical, highlighting a range of actions that form a backbone for community evolution. It’s not a defined roadmap, and it’s not a list of every idea we had or heard. We welcome the discussion, debate and idea generation that this document will spark. We want to hear your solutions on how to get change done, and what you would like to contribute.

We strived to make practical recommendations with the potential to make progress, lower barriers, and help our community to continue to evolve with time.

Throughout this process we have heard people say they believe change is necessary. Change is necessary for the longevity of Drupal the project and the code. Change is necessary to create a new generation of Drupallers — the people we want to help build ambitious things and to have the chance to build a career within our community.

It is hard to not feel the project is at a crossroads. We’ve climbed the mountain of Drupal 8, we sit at the peak and look to the valley below.

Where we go next, and who we take with us, is up to you.

We hope this proposal helps.

David, Ela, Stella, Lyndsey, Rachel, Hussain, and Adam

File attachments:  Drupal-Governance-Task-Force-Proposal-2018.pdf
Oct 04 2018
Oct 04

This is a public update on the work of the Governance Task Force.

The Governance Task Force has been working hard to prepare the proposal. We currently have a completed draft that we are actively refining for editorial improvement. As part of the review, we believe it is important to get initial feedback from some key stakeholders to ensure there are no major issues identified. We'll consider making changes to the proposal at our discretion. The proposal will then be delivered to the community and we’re very excited to soon share this. While things may change, we believe we are on time to deliver the proposal before the end of October.

Our team is actively discussing the handoff and next steps that follow from our work. We recognize that there may be ongoing support needed and want to do what we can to help follow-up efforts. It is imperative that momentum is maintained after our proposal is delivered.

We will be recommending a public commentary period before any recommendations move forward for the community to share their thoughts. This commentary period will likely outlast the task force. The task force will officially disband at the end of October, as we have stated in our charter. This does not mean that the work is complete, as there may be discussion and, most importantly, approved recommendations will need support to move forward. The task force wants to do what we can to enable the next steps and we are actively discussing how this might happen, even if we, as individuals, participate without an official charter.

We continue to be committed to serving the community and operating in a transparent way. If you wish to reach us, please fill out this Google form and we will respond as soon as we’re able.

Sep 15 2018
Sep 15

Who Are We?

The Drupal Community Working Group (CWG) is responsible for promoting and upholding the Drupal Code of Conduct and maintaining a friendly and welcoming community for the Drupal project.

The CWG is an independent group chartered directly by Dries Buytaert in his capacity as project lead. The original members of the CWG were appointed by Dries in March of 2013. Since then, new CWG members have been selected by the group from the Drupal community, and then approved by Dries. The CWG is made up entirely of community volunteers, and does not currently have any funding, staff, legal representation, or outside resources.

The CWG’s current active membership is:

  • George DeMet (United States): Joined CWG in March 2013, chair since March, 2016.
  • Michael Anello (United States): Joined CWG in December 2015.
  • Jordana Fung (Suriname): Joined CWG in May 2017.

Rachel Lawson (United Kingdom) was a member of the CWG from May through December 2017, when she started a new position as the Drupal Association’s Community Liaison.

Emma Karayiannis (United Kingdom) and Adam Hill (United Kingdom) have informed the CWG of their intention to formally step down from the CWG once replacements can be found for them; we are currently engaged in a search process to identify new members to fill their positions.

The CWG is also building a network of volunteer subject matter experts who we can reach out to for advice in situations that require specific expertise; e.g., cultural, legal, or mental health issues.

What Do We Do?

The CWG is tasked with maintaining a friendly and welcoming contributor community for the Drupal project. In addition to maintaining and upholding the Drupal Code of Conduct and working with other responsible entities within the Drupal ecosystem to ensure its enforcement, the CWG also helps community members resolve conflicts through an established process, acting as a point of escalation, mediation, and/or final arbitration for the Drupal community in case of intractable conflicts. We also provide resources, consultation and advice to community members upon request.

Other activities the CWG has engaged in in the past year include:

  • Sharing experiences and best practices with representatives from other open source projects, both in a one-on-one setting and at various open source community events.
  • Recognizing community leadership through the Aaron Winborn Award, which is presented annually to an individual who demonstrates personal integrity, kindness, and above-and-beyond commitment to the Drupal community.
  • Helping to ensure the community’s voice is represented in the governance process. While the CWG’s charter does not allow it to make community-wide governance decisions, the CWG did work with other interested members of the community to help organize and facilitate a series of community governance meetings in the fall of 2017 following the results of a survey conducted by the Drupal Association. Results and takeaways from these meetings were also shared with the community-at-large.
  • Organizing a Teamwork and Leadership Workshop at DrupalCon Nashville to explore teamwork, leadership, and followership in the context of the Drupal community. Our goal was to expand the base of people who can step into leadership positions in the Drupal community, and to help those who may already be in those positions be more effective. Takeaways from this event were also shared with the community-at-large.
  • With input from the community, drafting and adopting a Code of Ethics for CWG members that clearly defines expectations for members around subjects such as confidentiality and conflicts of interest.

Incident Reports

The CWG receives incident reports from Drupal community members via its incident report form or via email.

  • In 2017, the CWG received 43 official incident reports submitted.
  • From January 1 through September 14, 2018, the CWG has received 33 official incident reports.

In addition, we regularly receive informal reports from community members, which are not included in the totals above. With informal reports, we often encourage the community member to file an official report as well to establish a written record of the incident and to ensure that they have as much agency as possible over how the issue is addressed.

The types of issues that the CWG has received in the last year include:

  • Community members being disrespectful and rude in issue queues.
  • Technical disagreements and frustrations that turn into personal attacks.
  • Abusive language and harassment in Drupal Slack and IRC.
  • Appeals of bans made by Drupal Slack moderators.
  • Inappropriate language and content at community events.
  • Harassment and trolling of community members on social media .
  • Physical harassment of community members (both in and outside of community spaces).
  • Ongoing issues involving specific community members with established patterns of behavior that are disruptive to others.
  • Drupal trademark questions and issues (these are referred to Dries Buytaert, who is responsible for enforcing the Drupal trademark and logo policy).

The CWG also chose not to act on several reports it felt were being made in bad faith and/or in an attempt to harass or intimidate other community members. As per its charter, the CWG also does not respond to requests to take specific punitive action against members of the community. Our goal is to help people understand and take responsibility for the impact that their words and actions have on others.

The CWG relies primarily on its established conflict resolution process to address incident reports. Depending on the situation, this may involve one or more CWG members providing mediation between the parties in conflict or suggesting ways that they can resolve the issue themselves. For matters that may take an unusually long time to resolve, we provide all involved parties with regular status reports so they know that their issue is still being worked on.

In cases of a clear Code of Conduct violation, the CWG will take immediate steps as necessary to ensure the safety of others in the community up to and including recommending permanent or temporary bans from various Drupal community spaces, such as Slack, IRC, Drupal.org, or DrupalCon and other Drupal events.

Other outcomes may include:

  • Discussion of the issue with involved parties to try to find a mutually acceptable and beneficial outcome.
  • Asking one or more of the involved parties to apologize and/or take other actions to address the consequences of their behavior.
  • Discussion of the issue with the involved parties, after which someone may choose to leave the community voluntarily.
  • Asking someone to leave the community if they are not willing or able to address the consequences of their behavior.
  • Recommending bans from various community spaces, including virtual spaces

In some cases, we may receive an after-the-fact report about a situation that has already been resolved, or where the person making the report has asked for no action to be taken. In those cases, we review the incident, decide whether further action is necessary, and keep it on file for reference in case something similar happens in the future.

While the CWG has in the past directly acted as code of conduct enforcement contacts for DrupalCon (which is run by the Drupal Association and has its own code of conduct distinct from that of the community), as of November 2017 those duties have been assumed by DrupalCon staff. The CWG and DrupalCon staff continue to coordinate with each other to ensure that reports are handled by the appropriate responsible body.

Sharing With the Community

The CWG publishes anonymized versions of its weekly minutes that are shared with the community via our public Google Drive folder. These minutes are also promoted via the CWG’s Twitter account @drupalcommunity.

In addition to the public minutes, the CWG also occasionally issues public statements regarding issues of importance to the broader community and beyond:

The CWG also maintains a public issue queue on Drupal.org. Following a series of community discussions in the spring of 2017, the CWG filed a series of issues in this queue to clarify points of confusion and address outstanding concerns about its role in the community.

The CWG also presents sessions at DrupalCon, as well as other camps and events. Sessions presented at DrupalCon in the last year include:

In addition, CWG members have also organized, spoken, and/or participated in Q&A sessions about the CWG at the following events:

  • MidCamp (Chicago, IL)
  • DrupalCamp Asheville (Asheville, NC)
  • Twin Cities DrupalCamp (Minneapolis, MN)
  • DrupalCamp Colorado (Denver, CO)
  • FOSS Backstage (Munich, Germany)
  • Community Leadership Summit (Portland, OR)
  • Edinburgh Drupal User Group (Edinburgh, Scotland)
  • Open Source North East (Newcastle upon Tyne, England)
  • All Things Open (Raleigh, NC) - Upcoming

The CWG is also exploring ways it can make itself available more often to the community via real-time virtual channels such as Slack, Google Meet, or Zoom.

New Challenges

Online Harassment

The number of incidents that the CWG handles relating to online harassment, particularly on social media, has increased significantly in the last couple of years. Because this harassment is often perpetrated by individuals or groups of people posting from behind anonymous accounts, it is sometimes difficult for the CWG to positively identify those responsible and hold them accountable for their actions. This is compounded by the apparent lack of interest from leading social media companies in taking action against abusive accounts or addressing harassment that occurs on their platforms in any effective or meaningful way.

The Drupal community’s switch from IRC to Slack for much of its real-time communication has also provided another vector for harassment, particularly targeting people who participate in communities of interest that focus on topics such as diversity, inclusion, and women in Drupal. While it is possible to ban individual Slack accounts, it is fairly easy for perpetrators to create new ones, and because they are not always tied to Drupal.org IDs, it is sometimes difficult to identify who is responsible for them.

Sexual Harassment and Abuse

Following reports last year relating to sexual harassment in the Drupal community, the CWG understands that there are likely additional incidents that have occurred in the past that have gone unaddressed because we are unaware of them. While our code of conduct is clear that we do not tolerate abuse or harassment in our community, we also know that people don’t always feel safe reporting incidents or discussing their concerns openly. As a consequence, nothing is done about them, which undermines the effectiveness of our code of conduct and in turn leads to fewer reports and more incidents that go unaddressed.

It is our opinion as a group that open source communities across the board need better mechanisms and procedures for handling reports of sexual abuse, harassment, and/or assault. We also need to keep better records of incidents that have occurred, so that we can more quickly identify patterns of conduct and abuse, and better ways to recognize and address incidents across projects so that people who have engaged in harassment and abuse in one community aren’t able to repeat that behavior in another community.

Staffing and Resources

We need to ensure that the CWG is adequately staffed to assist with the increasing number of incident reports we receive each year. While several members have pursued relevant professional development and training opportunities at their own expense, the CWG currently has no direct access to funds or resources to pursue them as a group. As a volunteer community group chartered by the project lead, the CWG also currently operates without the benefit of legal protection or insurance coverage.

Initiatives for 2018/2019

Governance Changes

While the CWG is not allowed to make changes to its own charter, in early 2017 we explored a number of potential changes that we had intended to propose to Dries to help make our group more effective and better positioned to proactively address the needs of the Drupal community.

That work was put on hold following a series of community discussions that occurred in the spring of 2017.  Those conversations surfaced questions, suggestions, and concerns about the accountability, escalation points, and overall role of the CWG, many of which we documented and addressed in our public issue queue. While we were able to address many of the issues that were raised, some can only be addressed with changes to the CWG’s charter.

We fully support and appreciate the ongoing work of the Governance Task Force to update and reform Drupal community governance. While we understand that additional changes may occur pending the outcome of the overall governance reform process, we also feel that there are some changes related to the CWG that need to be made as soon as possible. These proposed changes are currently under review both internally as well as with Dries and other involved stakeholders, and will be shared with the community for review and comment prior to adoption.

Updating the Community’s Code of Conduct

The current Drupal community code of conduct was published in 2010 and is based on the Ubuntu code of conduct.  As per its charter, the CWG is responsible for “maintain[ing] the Conflict Resolution Process (CRP) and related documentation, including the Drupal Code of Conduct”. The CWG has made several changes to the code of conduct over the years, the most significant of which was the addition of the conflict resolution policy in 2014, much of which was inspired by work done within the Django community.

While Drupal was one of the first open source projects to adopt a code of conduct, many others have done so since, and there are a variety of models and best practices for open source community codes of conduct. Based on feedback that we have received over the past year, the CWG is working on an initiative to review and update Drupal’s community code of conduct with input and involvement from both the community-at-large as well as outside experts with code of conduct experience from other projects. Our goal is to introduce this initiative before the end of 2018.

Dealing with Banned Individuals

Some local event organizers have asked the CWG for better tools to ensure that they weren’t inadvertently providing a platform to people who have been banned from speaking at or attending other events due to code of conduct violations.  While the number of people who have been banned from attending DrupalCon and other Drupal events is very small, a comprehensive list of the identities of those individuals is currently known only to the CWG and the Drupal Association.

While the CWG does not generally publish the names of individuals who have been asked not to attend Drupal events, we do reserve the right to publish their names and the reasons for their ban if they do not abide by it.  While we believe that this is effective at deterring individuals from attending events they have been banned from, we also understand that it does not always provide other attendees and/or conference organizers with the tools they need to ensure a safe environment at their events.

Members of the CWG have discussed this issue with their counterparts in other communities, and it does not appear that there are consistently established best practices for handling these kinds of situations, particularly in communities as decentralized as Drupal. With the input of the community, we would like to establish clear and consistent guidelines for local event organizers.  

Community Workshops and Training

In 2016, the CWG conducted a survey and interviews of Drupal core contributors to identify sources of frustration during the Drupal 8 development cycle. One of our recommendations was for the project to focus more on developing skills like creative problem solving, conflict resolution, effective advocacy, and visioning in order to broaden understanding of Drupal’s community, its assets and its challenges.

Following the success of the teamwork and leadership workshop that the CWG led in collaboration with the Drupal Association at DrupalCon Nashville in 2018, the CWG is exploring opportunities for additional workshops and training at DrupalCon Seattle and other events.

Summary

Over the past few years, the Drupal project and community has grown rapidly, bringing a series of new and evolving challenges. Not only has the project grown progressively more complex with each major release, but the time between releases has increased and more is being asked of the developer community by customers and end-users.

We believe this is a significant contributing factor in the increase in the number of documented incidents of negative conflict, which left unaddressed may result in a decline in contributor productivity and morale. The work of the Community Working Group seeks not only to mitigate the impact of negative conflict, but also to provide the community with the tools and resources it needs to make the Drupal project a safer, more welcoming, and inclusive place.

Sep 11 2018
Sep 11

This is a public update on the work of the Governance Task Force .

The Governance Task Force completed the research phase, community member interviews, and is now working on the proposal to be delivered to project leadership and the community. We analyzed all of the previously shared information, and the interviews we conducted, in an effort to identify individual themes. These individual themes will be the basis for the proposal.

Extension

This process has taken longer than expected, especially given summer time conflicts. As such, members of the Governance Task Force have formally requested a one-month extension. We aim to have the proposal delivered by the end of October.

Drupal Europe

September 11, some members of the Governance Task Force will be leading a session at Drupal Europe, providing an update on current progress, facilitating an open discussion, and answering and questions.

Ongoing Feedback

Should you want to contact the Governance Task Force, feel free to reach out to any member of the group via Slack, drupal.org, or any public place you find our members. We’ve also setup a Google form for direct feedback. You can submit the form anonymously. This form will stay active throughout the proposal process.

Adam Bergstein
David Hernandez
Ela Meier
Hussain Abbas
Lyndsey Jackson
Rachel Lawson
Stella Power

Aug 07 2018
Aug 07

This is a public update on the work of the Governance Task Force.

We have progressed into what we are calling the “Engagement Phase” of our schedule; interviewing community member, working groups, and soliciting feedback and meetups and camp. To date we have interviewed at least 18 people (including community members, liaisons, and leadership,) and 3 groups, with at least 15 more being scheduled.

Interviews

If you would like to participate in an interview, please contact any member of the Governance Task Force or sign up using this Google form.

The purpose of interviews is to meet with people individually to get feedback and ideas, and have a conversation about community governance (non-technical governance.) Many governance related discussions have occurred in the past, but we want to make sure everyone has an opportunity to be heard, since group discussions are not always conducive to individual thoughts. Notes taken during the interview are available to, and editable by, the person interviewed, and not shared outside the Governance Task Force. If you have any concerns about a language barrier, privacy, or any other concerns about participating in an interview, contact us. We will do what we can to work with you.

Analysis

The individual interviews are a new step in this governance process, but we do have access to a lot of information that was already compiled from prior discussions. Many town hall style discussions were held over the past year, and we are using all of that information. As we progress into the “Analysis Phase” we are using that information to develop user stories and ideas that will help inform our eventual proposal. Once the interviews are concluded, their analysis will be merged with the existing information.

Drupal Europe

Rachel, Ela, and Stella will be providing an update on the task force’s efforts at Drupal Europe. Findings will be shared and there will be an open discussion to hear from attendees to inform our efforts.

Ongoing Feedback

The task force is committed to working transparently and delivering a well-rounded proposal for both the community and for leadership to review. We believe the proposal presents a great opportunity to help evolve community governance and inform next steps. Should you want to contact the Governance Task Force, feel free to reach out to any member of the group via Slack, drupal.org, or any public place you find our members.

We’ve also setup a Google form for direct feedback. If you do not want to participate in an interview, but do want to contribute your individual thoughts, use this form. You can answer as many or few questions you like. You can also submit the form anonymously. This form will stay active throughout the proposal process, so if you have thoughts to share at a later date, you can still use this form.

Adam Bergstein
David Hernandez
Ela Meier
Hussain Abbas
Lyndsey Jackson
Rachel Lawson
Stella Power

Jun 06 2018
Jun 06

The Drupal Community Working Group (CWG), with support from the Drupal Association, organized and held the first-ever Teamwork and Leadership Workshop at DrupalCon Nashville on April 10, 2018. The goal of the three-hour workshop was to explore teamwork, leadership, and followership in the context of the Drupal community as well as to help provide support and resources for people in the Drupal community who work alongside others in teams and/or may find themselves in positions of responsibility or leadership. Additionally, we hoped to expand the base of people who can step into leadership positions in the Drupal community, and to help those who may already be in those positions be more effective.

The workshop was led by Drupal Association board chair Adam Goodman, who generously donated his time. Adam is the head of Northwestern University’s Center for Leadership, and he works as an executive coach and advisor to senior executives and boards of directors at dozens of companies and organizations around the world. 

As part of the planning for the workshop, Adam asked us to enlist a number of facilitators to help with the various workshop exercises. In addition to three CWG members (Jordana Fung, George Demet, and Mike Anello), the following community members also facilitated: Donna Benjamin, Shyamala Rajaram, Gábor Hojtsy, Angie Byron, and Tiffany Farriss. The facilitators met with Adam prior to the workshop to understand what would be expected of them. 

We wanted to make sure that we invited a diverse range of people to the workshop who are doing awesome work with Drupal around the world, including those whose efforts may not be as well-known or recognized (yet).  We set an internal goal of at least 50% of attendees to be from populations historically underrepresented at DrupalCon, including those who self-identify as women, non-gender binary, people of color, and/or people who are not from Europe, the United States, or Canada.. To this end, prior to the public registration period, we sent out invitations to 64 community members, 75% of whom were from an under-represented cohort. We invited people who are involved in all aspects of the community including (but not limited to) event organizers, sprint organizers, project maintainers, as well as past and current Aaron Winborn Award nominees. At the workshop, there were a total of 50 attendees (there were a total of 60 seats available), with approximately 64% from underrepresented cohorts. 

Attendees were seated at round tables of approximately 10 people per table. The first half of the workshop was focused on large group exercises that focused on helping attendees think about what it meant to be a leader and a team member. We talked about keeping perspective as team members and not jumping to conclusions about each other's behaviors based on an often (extremely) limited set of data. The second half of the workshop focused on smaller group exercises in which individuals responded to various prompts and then discussed them as a small (table-sized) group. 

A few days after the workshop, we asked the attendees to complete an 11-question follow-up survey. Of the 50 attendees, we had 17 responses for a 33% response rate. We asked what their expectations were for the workshop; representative responses included:

I thought it would be a workshop on leadership, but I was surprised by the approach to the Drupal community.

Didn't know what to expect. So...none

The fact that we had multiple responses indicating that the expectations were not clear tells us that we need to do a better job in communicating exactly what the goals and activities of the workshop will be in the future. 

On a scale of 1-5, 73% of respondents indicated that the workshop met their expectations (via a rating of 4 or 5). 

We also asked respondents to share an insight from the workshop. Responses included:

Transition planning for responsibilities you take on and having a plan in place before even taking on the responsibility.

The need to know why each person on the team is present (their motivation) and the importance of unified movement toward a goal.

I hadn't written out what leadership looked like to me before, so I found that part of the exercise to be quite helpful.

The survey also found that the attendees found more value in the smaller group exercises than the large group exercises (81.3% vs. 60%), with 81.3% indicated they'd be interested in attending future similar workshops.

Many of the open ended responses indicated that some attendees were hoping for more practical, hands-on advice for specific situations. In addition, several of the responses felt that parts of the exercises felt rushed, and wished there was more time. Finally, several attendees commented on the appropriateness of some of the imagery used in one of the workshop exercises, for which the CWG made a public apology following the event. We have gone through all of the comments relating to aspects of the event that were considered negative or unhelpful and will take this into consideration on how we can improve the workshop for the future.

Overall, we feel the workshop was a success, and something that has been long overdue for the Drupal community. We've been discussing how we can make similar content available to everyone in the community, not just DrupalCon attendees. We're open to ideas for future workshops on these topics (and format), let us know if you have any ideas.
 

Mar 17 2018
Mar 17

The Drupal Community Working Group, in partnership with the Drupal Association, is very excited to offer a special workshop at DrupalCon Nashville designed to explore leadership, followership, and teamwork as it applies to various roles in our community.

One of the most remarkable things about open source projects like Drupal is that they enable people from all over to come together and collaborate with others toward shared goals. In order to be successful, open source projects need to continually work toward building positive, supportive communities that enable everyone to be at their best. If you are someone who has, or is ready for a position of responsibility within Drupal (e.g., camp and group organizers, initiative leads, sprint mentors, module maintainers, etc.), we encourage you to attend.

This free event will be facilitated by incoming Drupal Association board chair Adam Goodman, who is also the head of Northwestern University’s Center for Leadership, and works as an executive coach and advisor to senior executives and boards of directors at dozens of companies and organizations around the world. A number of other community members, including Donna Benjamin, Shyamala Rajaram, Gábor Hojtsy, Mike Anello, George DeMet, Tiffany Farriss, and Jordana Fung will also be helping to co-facilitate.

The Teamwork and Leadership Workshop will feature a large group exercise about common assumptions and myths regarding teamwork and leadership, discussion of some best practices for effective leadership and teamwork today, and small group sessions where people can link those concepts with their own experiences within the Drupal community.

The workshop will be held from 2-5pm on Tuesday, April 10, and you can register now at: https://goo.gl/forms/7SWzVS4qhHqbiRrW2. Space is limited, so don’t delay.

We hope to see you there!

About Drupal Sun

Drupal Sun is an Evolving Web project. It allows you to:

  • Do full-text search on all the articles in Drupal Planet (thanks to Apache Solr)
  • Facet based on tags, author, or feed
  • Flip through articles quickly (with j/k or arrow keys) to find what you're interested in
  • View the entire article text inline, or in the context of the site where it was created

See the blog post at Evolving Web

Evolving Web