This document is adapted from Code for America’s Code of Conduct and Anti-Harassment Policy.


OpenOakland's Code of Conduct

Our Code of Conduct aims to produce an environment that is inclusive and collaborative by guarding each person’s dignity and sense of security.

The OpenOakland community expects that  OpenOakland activities, events, and digital forums:

  1. OpenOakland is a professional environment. Behaviors that are inappropriate around your boss are inappropriate here.
  2. Respect personal space. As a policy, we discourage hugs and other physical contact
  3. Err on the side of political correctness. Don’t say or write anything that can be misunderstood as insensitive

OpenOakland reserves the right to ask anyone in violation of these policies not to participate in OpenOakland network activities, events, and digital forums

We have put together a toolbox for achieving the environment set out above.

For interpersonal interactions:

  1. Presume the value of others. Differing ideas, skills and contributions all play a crucial role in the operation of each project
  2. Endeavor to include technical and non technica skill set in your project
  3. Encourage members and participants to listen as much as they speak.

When considering a new project or working on a current one:

  1. Strive to build tools that are open and free technology for public use.
  2. Consider access for and input from those who are traditionally excluded from the civic process.
  3. Encourage participation from all community members in the planning, design, and implementation of civic tech
  4. Create and maintain positive relationships with community partners, community members and local government staff and actively involve them in the decision making process.

OpenOakland’s Anti-Harassment Policy

This anti-harassment policy is based on the example policy from the Geek Feminism wiki, created by the Ada Initiative and other volunteers.

This policy is based on several other policies, including the Ohio LinuxFest anti-harassment policy, written by Esther Filderman and Beth Lynn Eicher, and the Con Anti-Harassment Project. Mary Gardiner, Valerie Aurora, Sarah Smith, and Donna Benjamin generalized the policies and added supporting material. Many members of LinuxChix, Geek Feminism and other groups contributed to this work.


All OpenOakland network activities, events, and digital forums and their staff, presenters, and participants are held to an anti-harassment policy, included below.

OpenOakland is dedicated to providing a harassment-free experience for everyone regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, or religion. We do not tolerate harassment of staff, presenters, and participants in any form. Sexual language and imagery is not appropriate for any OpenOakland event or network activity, including talks. Anyone in violation of these policies may expelled from OpenOakland network activities, events, and digital forums, at the discretion of the event organizer or forum administrator.

Harassment includes but is not limited to: offensive verbal or written comments related to gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, religion; sexual images in public spaces; deliberate intimidation; stalking; following; harassing photography or recording; sustained disruption of talks or other events; inappropriate physical contact; unwelcome sexual attention; unwarranted exclusion; and patronizing language or action.

If a participant engages in harassing behavior, the organizers may take any action they deem appropriate, including warning the offender or expulsion from OpenOakland network activities, events, and digital forums.

If you are being harassed, notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other concerns, please contact a member of the event staff or forum administrator immediately. You can contact them at [EVENT ORGANIZER/FORUM ADMINISTRATOR EMAIL AND PHONE NUMBER]. Event staff or forum administrators will be happy to help participants contact hotel/venue security or local law enforcement, provide escorts, or otherwise assist those experiencing harassment to feel safe for the duration of the event.

If you cannot reach an event organizer or forum administrator and/or it is an emergency, please call 911 and/or remove yourself from the situation.

You can also contact OpenOakland about harassment at _safespace@openoakland.org _and feel free to use the email template below.  The OpenOakland Core Team acknowledge that we are not always in a position to evaluate a given situation due to the number of events and the fact that our team is not always present. However, we are hopeful that by providing these guidelines we are establishing a community that jointly adheres to these values and can provide an environment that is welcoming to all.

We value your attendance and hope that by communicating these expectations widely we can all enjoy a harassment-free environment.

Email Template for Anti-Harassment Reporting

SUBJECT: Safe Space alert at [EVENT NAME]

I am writing because of harassment at an OpenOakland event, (NAME, PLACE, DATE OF EVENT).

You can reach me at (CONTACT INFO). Thank you.

Code of Conduct Complaints will be reviewed by the Ombudspersons. The full process is stated here.

Image and Video Policy

OpenOakland respects members’ and event attendees’ privacy—online and offline. Creating a safe and comfortable space for all people to participate and contribute fully is our first priority in OpenOakland spaces. When capturing video, photographic, or audio images in all OpenOakland spaces, consent by subjects is paramount.

To this end, OpenOakland’s official photo and video policy is an opt-in model, meaning it is the photographer’s onus to gain consent from all individuals being photographed/filmed. Images and videos captured officially to be used on OpenOakland promotional materials are captured and used at the discretion of the Communications Leads.

Any OpenOakland member capturing images on behalf (meaning they are capturing images, video, or audio that will be posted or used on official OpenOakland channels, websites, or social media accounts) of OpenOakland must follow the opt-in policy. If a photo shoot (meaning a pre-arranged event specifically for capturing images, video, or audio for the purpose of being used for promotion of OpenOakland events or projects) is being arranged, consent should be provided in writing by each “model” signing a waiver that stipulates that the images taken are only for OpenOakland promotions. At events, name badges that clearly state opt-in or out should be worn by all attendees. When events are held in public spaces where photograph or videotape anyone is legal, the rules stipulated above still apply. Our goal is not to simply meet legal requirements, but to foster a space that is comfortable for everyone.

In the event that name tags are not available, anyone capturing images, video, or audio must acquire verbal consent of all those persons whose image is being captured ideally before any image, video, or audio is captured, and definitel prior to making any collected content public _e.g _, before tweeting, or distributing through other social media platforms. Any complaints could result in a take down of images on media channels. If repeated complaints are filed, OpenOakland steering committee members may take disciplinary action.

Related reading:

https://geekfeminism.org/2009/10/11/conference-recordings-and-harassment