Code of Conduct
Our code of conduct applies to all TSF spaces, which include but are not limited to:
- Online and offline events, such as TSF conferences, virtual summits, panel discussions, roundtables, meetups, reading groups, and mixers.
- Collaborative workspaces and communication channels.
- Any communication (digital or analog) carried out in the context of TSF business or collaborations.
Our code of conduct applies to everyone who engages with TSF, which includes, but is not limited to:
- TSF staff, board, and advisors
- Members of the Trust & Safety Research Coalition
- Individuals with whom TSF engages in the course of TSF-sponsored activities and spaces
Healthy Engagement and Communication
We do not expect everyone to agree on everything; in fact, we believe that differences of perspectives and opinions are necessary for individual learning and growth and to promote innovation and creativity within TSF, the trust and safety ecosystem, and our broader communities. We do, however, expect individuals engaging with TSF and within TSF-supported spaces to commit to positive, civil discourse that is constructive and informative, with the understanding that our diversity makes us stronger.
Healthy tension in collegial discussion can help us grow, but unhealthy conflict can result in a chilling effect. To make TSF as welcoming as it can be for all, we expect the following:
Be Open To Learning
- Be intellectually curious. Ask questions.
- Be ready to listen and engage. Try to be mindful of any preconceived judgment or assumptions.
Support Each Other
- Encourage others to participate. Bring others into the conversation, and create spaces for others to share ideas. Do not dominate conversations or engage in behaviors that prevent others from participating.
- Do not disparage other people’s work or their approaches to their work. For example, quantitative researchers should recognize qualitative researchers’ methods and approaches as legitimate and vice versa.
We want those in our community to be who they are and act in good faith by being authentic and truthful about themselves and their work. Individuals should be forthright about their professional affiliations and proactively disclose potential conflicts of interest. Additionally, as TSF’s spaces are meant for collaboration and learning, no one should leverage these spaces to market their products or services.
The following are inauthentic behaviors that could result in action from TSF:
- Saying you work for a specific organization when you don’t, or misleading others with regards to your primary organizational affiliation.
- Impersonating another individual or role.
- Taking credit for someone else’s ideas or work, including plagiarizing.
- Sharing or making copies of someone else’s work product without approval or consent.
- Using TSF’s spaces to fundraise, market, or sell a product, tool, or service.
- Deliberately misrepresenting research data or findings.
A Respectful Community
Productive collaborations depend on trust, so it’s critical everyone behaves with respect towards each other.
Recognizing Structural Bias and Inequities
TSF encourages constructive dialogue with diverse perspectives. To do so, everyone needs to feel welcome and comfortable. There may be times when unexamined perspectives, structural bias, or other inequities compromise community trust and result in conflict or disagreements. When made aware, TSF will work to address the situation, including engaging in conversations with individuals to increase awareness of privilege and unconscious bias, to ensure that all people feel welcome, and work to increase recognition of structural bias and inequities in our research and in trust and safety as a field.
Below are examples of conflicts that may arise due to lack of awareness, privilege, and unconscious bias.
- Invocation of “Reverse”-isms: Claims of “reverse”-isms include allegations of “reverse racism,” “reverse sexism,” and “cisphobia.”
- Tone policing: Feeling that someone’s “tone” isn’t appropriately congenial or agreeable while they are calling out bias/prejudice or voicing concern about an issue.
- Willfully disregarding boundary communication: Not listening and/or not respecting boundary communications the listener perceives as rude, such as “Leave me alone,” “Go away,” or “I’m not discussing this with you.”
- Refusing to engage with discourse about structural bias: Arguing with or silencing someone who calls out the existence of racist, sexist, cissexist, ableist, or otherwise oppressive behavior or assumptions.
You must not make harmful or prejudicial comments related to race, color, caste, ethnicity, immigration status, national origin, religion or faith, sex or gender identity, sexual orientation, disability or medical condition, lower socio-economic status, age, weight or size, pregnancy, veteran status, or any other attributes or characteristics. Such behaviors could result in action from TSF, including banning from TSF events or activities.
Harassment, Bullying, Threats, and Violence
You must not engage in behaviors such as intimidating, stalking, or threatening other individuals. Behaviors such as assault, damage to others’ property or person, or other behaviors with the intent to harass or harm are prohibited. Such behaviors could result in action from TSF, including banning from TSF events or activities.
Unwelcome sexual or romantic attention, contact, behavior, or advances are unacceptable. Such behaviors will result in action from TSF.
You should not inhibit the normal flow of business with disruptive behavior. Disruptive behavior that could result in action from TSF includes the following:
- Repeatedly sending irrelevant or spammy content through TSF communication channels and/or disrupting live events (e.g., Zoombombing).
- Distributing nude or sexual content, violent and gory content, hate speech, etc. outside of the context of a trust and safety discussion. (See “Sensitive Content” below.)
Due to the nature of trust and safety work, there may be times when individuals will need to share, discuss, or debate material that is offensive or harmful. We expect everyone to engage in these discussions with respect and empathy. Where possible, TSF will apply content warnings to let people know that they may encounter sensitive topics and content (written, visual, or audio) in TSF discussions, documents, or other material. Depending on availability and context, content warnings could take the form of interstitials, labels, or verbal warnings.
When sharing or discussing content that is sensitive, all stakeholders are expected to inform others that what they are about to share may be sensitive content. (Refer to the “Abuse types” section of the T&S Curriculum for examples of sensitive content.) Given that it is difficult to anticipate what others might consider to be troubling, it is recommended that, whenever presenting examples of content that an audience might encounter, to indicate that it is potentially sensitive content.
Privacy and Confidentiality
To foster trust and protect others’ personal safety, we expect people to respect others’ privacy and, where requested or legally required, adhere to confidentiality.
You are expected to adhere to implicit and explicit confidentiality expectations when engaging in TSF’s activities, events, or networking spaces. For example, if a meeting is operating under Chatham House Rule, you are free to use the information received, but you should not reveal the identity or the affiliation of the speaker(s) or any other participant.
The following are behaviors that could violate privacy and confidentiality and result in action from TSF.
- Sharing others’ personal information without their consent: Personal information includes: name, contact details (email, phone number, address), current or former employer, location, or other personally identifiable information.
- Doxxing: Do not publicly share private and personal information of anyone in the TSF community.
- Intellectual property infringement: Do not take or share screenshots or screen recordings of TSF virtual or in-person events and/or online communication spaces without the consent of TSF.
- Sharing other’s work, projects, or ideas without consent: Do not share other TSF community members’ work without permission.
- Violating confidentiality or NDA agreements: Do not share information that was disclosed in a confidential discussion.
Legal Obligations and Confidentiality
Compliance with Laws and Ethics
You should not engage in illegal or unethical behavior. You should comply with all applicable laws and regulations when engaging in TSF events, activities, and spaces. Compliance with applicable laws and ethics is your responsibility. If engaged in research projects or activities, you are expected to adhere to rigorous research standards and ethical guidelines.
Illegal content or behavior is prohibited on TSF’s communication platforms and workspaces. Although there may be times when TSF members may discuss illegal content (e.g., CSAM), it is imperative that the content itself stays out of TSF channels.
TSF does not play a role in the competitive decisions of its members, partners, supporters, or stakeholders. While TSF may facilitate discussions or activities that examine or describe various trust and safety practices or operations, TSF does not force supporters or individual trust and safety professionals to adhere to uniform positions or standards espoused by TSF. Moreover, TSF does not encourage partners, stakeholders, or those engaging with TSF to collude or encourage any particular set of business practices.
Security and Encryption
TSF’s communication platforms may not support end-to-end encryption. Individuals should not share documents or information that require end-to-end encryption through TSF’s communication platforms.
Employer Compliance and Guidelines
TSF doesn’t have insight into codes of conduct or other compliance requirements set out by employers or professions. Individuals who engage with TSF are responsible for making sure they never engage in activity that could put their employer or employment at risk.
- Read, understand, and comply with your employer’s antitrust policy, data use policies, and privacy policies.
- Do not reveal or exchange information that violates your terms of employment, such as sharing trade secrets or internal-only documentation that hasn’t been approved for circulation.
Mutual Non-Disclosure Agreements
Depending on the research activity (for example, if participating as a member of a Research Subcommittee composed of industry researchers), you may be required to sign a mutual non-disclosure agreement (NDA) and adhere to any legal confidentiality obligations.