Etiquette/Etiquette Guidelines

From OpenStreetMap Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

As requested by the OSMF board, the LCCWG Moderation Subcommittee of volunteers revised the [Etiquette Guidelines]. This draft document will be open for comments and suggestions from August 13 to September 8, 2021. Please use this Discussion page for your comments. The Process for Moderation draft is posted here and is open for comment until August 18. Recruitment for a Moderation Team will be the next step of this process. Thank you for your participation!

Etiquette Guidelines - DRAFT REVISION


The OpenStreetMap Foundation adopted this revision to their Etiquette Guidelines in 2021 to foster a safe and positive community experience for all. These guidelines aim to support a community where all people should feel safe and confident to participate, regardless of “age, culture, ethnicity, gender identity or expression, national origin, physical or mental difference, politics, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, subculture”, and any other dimension of diversity (reference: OSMF Diversity Statement).

Where this Applies

As of 2021, these Etiquette Guidelines apply to the OSM talk@ and OSMF talk@ mailing lists (Note: The subcommittee recommends that the OSMF Board expand the Guidelines and the Process for Moderation to make all OSMF spaces safe and inclusive). Many people new to OpenStreetMap have their first exposure to the community in our online channels, but communication through online methods does not allow one to see facial expression, hear tone or see other cues. Due to the nature of this communication initial impressions are very important. We should strive to make a good first impression and we should be aware that many of these channels are archived in one form or another and will survive for a long time.

How do these guidelines apply in the OpenStreetMap Community? The best use of these guidelines is self governance. When we forget ourselves, our friends should remind us. But if our friends don't remind us, a moderator might remind us or need to take further action.

Encouraged/Expected Behavior

The following behaviors are expected of OpenStreetMap community members:

  • Be welcoming. OpenStreetMap strives to be a community that welcomes and supports people of all backgrounds, cultures, and identities. Some examples of behavior that contribute to creating a positive environment include the use of welcoming and inclusive language, respect for differing viewpoints and experiences, empathy towards other community members and communicating with a global audience in mind. Remember that those new to OpenStreetMap may not have any background. Tolerance and support are encouraged.
  • Act in good faith. It is surprisingly easy to misunderstand each other, be it online or in person; particularly in such a culturally and linguistically diverse setting as OpenStreetMap. Misunderstandings can easily arise on contentious topics, when we are in a rush, or otherwise distracted. Please ask clarifying questions before assuming that a communication was inappropriate or not in good faith.
  • Be respectful. Communicate with the same respect you would utilize in person. Enthusiastic discussions are part of the lifeblood of a successful project and disagreements are inevitable. We should strive to keep our discussions and disagreements appropriate and calm.
  • When we disagree, try to understand why. Disagreements, both social and technical, happen easily and often. It is important that we seek to understand each other and work to resolve disagreements and differing views constructively. When someone contradicts your own perceptions, try to understand where the other person is coming from. Try to ask questions that will serve to clarify, rather than to escalate an issue, or consider private messaging for two-person conversations or digressions.
  • Effective communication. Stay on topic and be concise. Please feel free to start a new thread with any diverging topics.

Behavior That Will Not Be Tolerated

Examples of behaviors that will not be tolerated include, but are not limited to:

  • Violent threats, abuse, or language directed against another person, including deliberate intimidation or harassment;
  • Conduct, speech, or jokes that are sexist, racist, homophobic, transphobic, xenophobic, ableist or otherwise discriminatory or offensive in nature;
  • The use of unwelcome, suggestive, derogatory or inappropriate nicknames or terms. This includes hurtful or harmful language related to: background, family status, gender, gender identity or expression, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, native language, age, ability, race and/or ethnicity, caste, national origin, socioeconomic status, religion, geographic location, profession, and other attributes.
  • Bullying or disrespect towards individuals, such as retaliation, personal insults, deadnaming, or innuendo.
  • Posting sexually explicit or violent material, or including this content in presentations, talks, workshops, or threads;
  • Posting (or threatening to post) other people's personally identifying information ("doxing");
  • Inappropriate attention or communication. This includes continued unwelcome one-on-one communication after a request to cease, unwelcome sexual attention, and repeated harassment of others.