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Re: Reminder: Unsuitable language & Code of Ethics & Professional Conduct

From: Mike Prorock <mprorock@mesur.io>
Date: Mon, 31 Jan 2022 09:06:36 -0500
Message-ID: <CAGJKSNSrvzND8qdueA6gQxNxbBEirT=Yet-wQpFC41OSYyyApg@mail.gmail.com>
To: Joe Andrieu <joe@legreq.com>, Heather Vescent <heathervescent@gmail.com>
Cc: Credentials Community Group <public-credentials@w3.org>
A lot to unpack here, and I will miss a few things, though not

First a few notes from my perspective as a chair, and I believe as to why
Heather chimed in and I fully support her comment.
1) There have been multiple uses of language on the mailing list lately
that have been quite inflammatory to some audiences, including use of the
term Fascism
2) We should try to be cognizant of how things will be perceived by others,
and if we can avoid politically charged language we should.
3) We should be looking at this mailing list as a way to advance common
goals related to technical standards for the greater adoption of
technologies that increase self sovereignty, privacy, and security, and to
discuss technical issues related to work items within the CCG.

In this case, Heather posted as a top level thread that some concern has
been raised, on and off list by members of the community, that certain
items have been taken as offensive.

You will note that Heather did not state that those items were a violation
of the CEPC, only that "All members of the CCG agree to abide by the Code
of Ethics and
Professional Conduct" (

Can we as chairs do better? always.  In this case however, I would not take
it as a personal attack, and If you want to hop on a direct call with
myself, Heather, or both of us; or to discuss the topic on a CCG call, as
always, we are happy to facilitate.

On the practical matter of how reported concerns related to or violations
of the CEPC are currently being handled by the Chairs:
In general if there is a clear violation of the CEPC that individual will
be reached out to directly by the chairs, and most often, if the matter is
serious enough, a quick call is usually all it takes to discuss the issue
and resolve it.  If it is a minor issue, there might be a quick note out to
the list or on a related github comment that basically says "guys, we agree
on way more than we disagree on, and have some really important common
goals here, lets try and get along and if possible avoid offending folks".
That latter should act as a self reflection point, and I would not take it
as a personal attack, especially if, as in this case, it is noted right up
front that there was clear good intention.  The chairs need some practical
way if approached by individuals from the community to say "let's be
mindful" and acknowledge some concern, without trying to kill the
conversation, which in relation to this topic and post, I at least have no
desire of doing.    If for some reason there is repeat behaviour that is
highly problematic that individual might be referred to a W3C Ombuds to
help identify and avoid repeat issues.

Mike Prorock
CTO, Founder

Received on Monday, 31 January 2022 14:07:01 UTC

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