Feb 23 2015
Feb 23

In previous posts, we’ve talked about who the Community Working Group (CWG) is and why we’re here, as well some of the work we’ve done around establishing a process for conflict resolution in the Drupal community.

In this post, I’d like to go into more detail about what happens when folks file incident reports with the Community Working Group, and open up the conversation on how we can more effectively address issues that have a larger impact on the Drupal community as a whole.

Currently, the CWG meets once a week over Google Hangout to go through any issues that might have been filed since our last meeting, as well as to discuss ongoing questions and concerns that have been brought to our attention through various channels (reports, individual conversations, etc.) and the overall health of the Drupal community.

As often as possible, we post the minutes of our regular meetings. By necessity, these are somewhat redacted due to the fact that we are often discussing matters of a sensitive nature that have been shared with us in confidence. We also maintain an email list where we discuss ongoing issues and other things that come up in the time between our regular meetings.

When an issue is filed, whether though the Incident Report Form, via e-mail, or in our public issue queue, it goes on the agenda for the next weekly meeting (if the matter is of a serious and immediate nature, CWG members may choose to take immediate action and/or meet outside our normal meeting time). We discuss each item as a group and come to agreement on next steps, then assign someone to follow-up with the individuals in question. If the issue is about something that doesn’t fall within the charter of the CWG, we may refer the matter to another group (e.g., the Technical Working Group or the Licensing Working Group), or reply back to the reporting individual with an explanation.

In cases where there is a dispute between two or more individuals, our general approach is to first gather as much information as possible from all involved parties. In order to ensure that people are able to share their stories with us in an open and honest manner, we do not share any names or other sensitive details outside the group without permission.

Once we have a sufficient level of detail, we meet again as a group to decide how to proceed. 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. In cases where there is a clear Code of Conduct violation, we will talk directly to the person or persons who engaged in the violation to help them understand the impact of their words and/or actions and to take responsibility for them.

In some cases, we may receive an after-the-fact report about a situation that has already been resolved. 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.

If this sounds long and drawn out, that’s intentional. Unless an issue requires immediate action, our process is designed to enable resolutions that are as thoughtful and permanent as possible. The Community Working Group is not the “Drupal police” and our role is not about deciding “who’s right” and “who’s wrong” in a given situation so much as it is about helping people in our community work together in a mutually respectful way. While many of the items that we tackle are initiated by issues that are reported to us, our process is not exclusively complaint-driven.

The people who volunteer their time serving on the Community Working Group are people with backgrounds in community leadership and conflict resolution who all have been working in the Drupal community for years. We believe that a culture that encourages healthy debate and disagreement is a big part of what gives the Drupal project and community its strength. What we are primarily concerned about are destructive conflicts that violate our shared community values and make the Drupal community a less welcoming place for everyone.

To that end, we’re looking for the community to help us shape our process for addressing systematic patterns of disruptive behaviours that have an impact that goes beyond just those individuals who are directly involved. Please read our proposal and give us your thoughts in the comments section. You can also share your thoughts privately by e-mailing us at drupal-cwg [at] drupal.org.


Jul 07 2014
Jul 07
webchick's picture

An alternative is the drupal-cwg [at] drupal.org email address, as documented on https://www.drupal.org/governance/community-working-group.

We chose to use Google Forms because a wide variety of people about whom conflicts may occur have very high-level access to Drupal.org. A neutral third-party service doesn't have this problem, although I totally get why some have ToS concerns with it.

DamienMcKenna's picture

Could we please have that email address added to the top of the Incident Report form, just to make it obvious for people? Thanks!

kattekrab's picture

I've edited the form and updated the issue.


Would be good to get some sanity check eyeballs on it though!

Thanks all!
@gaele - for raising the question
@DamienMcKenna - for the suggestions.
@webchick - for adding to the queue.

jhodgdon's picture

You asked for "sanity check eyballs" on https://www.drupal.org/governance/community-working-group/incident-report

I have a few comments:

a) There is a very large wall of text at the top. Maybe it could be organized into bullets or sections or something? [see below]

b) You might also want to take a look at the descriptions for the Who/What etc. questions. They are a bit repetitive.

c) The "Who" question also has a mix of questions (ending in ?) and ... sort-of questions (ending in .) which turned me off.

d) "Please include links or quoted text if relevant." is under "where". Um... I think that would be under "what"? At least the "quoted text" sounds like a "what" not a "where"? It's kind of confusing what the distinction is.

So... Here's my suggestion for the top. Items in [] are my notes on the edits.

The community working group (CWG) upholds the Drupal Code of Conduct (DCOC). See:
- https://drupal.org/governance/community-working-group
- https://drupal.org/dcoc

[made this a bullet list]

Reporting incidents to the CWG

[header added]

This form can be used to report incidents that may breach the code of conduct, or to report non-code, non-technical issues that can't be resolved between members of the community.

Alternatively, you may email the CWG directly: [email protected]
Please make sure to include as much information as you can by answering the questions in the form in your email. [note: small edit in this sentence]

Incidents to report elsewhere

[added header, and this information came from elsewhere on the page]
IMPORTANT: If you are in any kind of immediate physical danger, please contact your local authorities.

Technical disputes should be raised with the Technical Working Group. Personal disputes that have arisen out of technical issues can be brought to the CWG.


Notes about incident reports

[added header, and the information here elsewhere on the page]
We hope you've tried to resolve issues between yourselves. If that failed, we hope that you reached out to fellow friends and colleagues in the community to help mediate your dispute. This form should only be used when those steps did not lead to resolution.

These incident reports are shared with the immediate members of the Drupal Community Working Group and are kept confidential. In some cases we may decide it necessary to make a public statement. In that case, the identities of all involved will remain confidential unless there are strong reasons, or mutual agreement they should be revealed.

Builder of Drupal sites and modules, and Drupal tutor - http://poplarware.com
Drupal Core maintainer for documentation

kattekrab's picture

Thanks Jennifer - really useful review and patch.

Going to paste this into the issue https://www.drupal.org/node/2299737

Let's see if we can tighten up the wording around those questions too.

Patrícia Jyotsna's picture

Hi, I heard about Drupal is now a growing community and knowing that the mentored sprints was attended by many to listen to tools presentation is such a very successful one. In relevance to this, I am with you to say that we must be aware in keeping our shared principles and values in mind when interacting with others to be able to attain an inspiring event like the Drupal sprints at Amsterdam.

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