Universal Code of Conduct/Draft review/Change log

Universal Code of Conduct


Process ReviewEdit

This document presents the changes made in the UCoC draft after the community consultation with the rationale behind those changes.

The UCoC draft was published on meta on the 7th of September by the Trust & Safety team. By the 10th of September, the team successfully uploaded the translation of the draft in 30 additional languages and posted an invitation message to participate in the consultation in 600+ community portals. The team then monitored the discussion, paying special attention to the draft-improvement feedback from the communities. At the end of every week, the team compiled the feedback from all the draft pages and community portals in the form of digests and supplied them to the Drafting Committee for reviews. The digests contained categorized inputs in the form of suggestions for - copy edit changes, word changes, phase changes, the addition of contexts, and questions from the communities. They included direct comments from the community members indicating the language projects they came from.

The Drafting Committee convened every Wednesday to discuss the proposed changes and make recommendations and continued to work on them asynchronously during the whole period.

The first set of finalized changes were published on October 13th, 2020.

Overall changes:Edit

All the changes included some copyedit suggestions and suggestions to remove ambiguities. The drafting committee incorporated most of those suggestions to make the document clearer and more concise. Several translation suggestions were shared by both the communities and the translators. Those suggestions have also been noted. Issues that could be addressed by making the English draft better were addressed while language-specific translation concerns will be passed onto the translators translating the final draft.

Section 1 - IntroductionEdit

Community’s comments Changes made Rationale
Changes
Word Changes:
  1. Question- So private abuse, say in wikimail or direct-messages on a WM-hosted chat platform, is okay?). Suggestion - include ‘one-to-one communication’
  1. The Universal Code Of Conduct applies equally to all Wikimedians without any exceptions.
  • Also added private, public and semi-public interactions
  1. Removing the ambiguity
Phrase Changes:
  1. baseline of acceptable and unacceptable behaviour
  2. It applies to all in-person and virtual events, technical spaces, and all Wikimedia projects and wikis
  3. It seems that there are three different categories? Acceptable, Expected, or Unacceptable?
  4. The UCoC provides a baseline of behaviour for collaboration on Wikimedia projects worldwide. Communities may add to this to develop policies that take account of local and cultural context, while maintaining the baselines listed here as a minimum standard.
  1. baseline of behaviour for collaboration on Wikimedia projects worldwide
  2. It applies to all Wikimedia projects, technical spaces, in-person and virtual events
  3. Changed to expected and unacceptable behaviour.
  4. The Universal Code of Conduct provides a baseline of behaviour for collaboration on Wikimedia projects worldwide. Communities may add to this to develop policies that take account of local and cultural context, while maintaining the criteria listed here as a minimum standard.
  1. Removing redundancy, providing more clarity
  2. Rearranging the terms to give them the appropriate weight.
  3. Removing redundancy, providing more clarity
  4. Tightening language, taking in concepts that were brought up in the broader discussion
Additions
  1. We want these communities to be positive, safe and healthy environments for anyone who joins (and wants to join) them
  1. Making space for growth, community suggestion
Removals
  1. This includes new and experienced contributors, functionaries within the projects, event organizers and participants, employees and board members of affiliates and Wikimedia Foundation employees and board members. It applies to all Wikimedia projects, technical spaces, in-person and virtual events, as well as the following instances:
  1. Redundancy removed

Section 2 - Why we have a UCoCEdit

Community’s comments Changes made Rationale
Changes
Word Changes:
  1. Redundancy in use of words ‘engage’ and ‘participate’ - To "engage in" is to take part in an activity, to be a participant, so there's no need to say that twice.
  1. anyone who joins (and wants to join)
  1. Simplified to enhance clarity
Phrase Changes:
  1. baseline of acceptable and unacceptable behaviour
  2. It applies to all in-person and virtual events, technical spaces, and all Wikimedia projects and wikis
  1. minimum set of guidelines of expected and unacceptable behavior
  2. It applies to all Wikimedia projects, technical spaces, in-person and virtual events
  1. Removing redundancy, providing more clarity
Critical comments:
  1. ‘Acting in contradiction with the UCOC can result in sanctions being imposed by ... the Wikimedia Foundation as the legal owner of the platforms.’ is much too vague and can lead to blocking without due process.
  2. This section could go before the first section
  1. Actions that contradict the Universal Code of Conduct can result in sanctions. These may be imposed by designated functionaries (as appropriate in their local context) and/or by the Wikimedia Foundation as the legal owner of the platforms.
  2. Changed the order, rearranged both sections internally and moved the section above ‘Introduction’.
  1. Changed the phrase to provide more clarity
  2. Community suggestion led to rearranging section titles and some parts of the sections.
Additions
Removals

Section 3 - Expected BehaviourEdit

Community’s comments Changes made Rationale
Changes
Word Changes:
  1. The word ‘sex’ is missing from the list, it is not the same as gender identity
  2. Respect - "Respect me" can mean "treat me as your equal," but it can also mean "treat me as your superior." Thus, less emphasis should be paid on this word.
  3. “will treat them with the same respect as we would want them to show to us”--> This statement can be interpreted as an expression from an ideal world assuming all people have the same underlying well behavior. This is not shared by everyone in reality. I suggest something as "we will treat them respectfully".
  4. engage in constructive, positive editing - Some editing is by necessity destructive; removing a statement is sometimes required. Deleting an article is also destructive, but sometimes necessary. Pointing out that a statement is wrong or unverifiable is "negative". It would be better to say "Your contributions should improve the quality of the project".
  5. Criticism should be delivered in a sensitive, constructive manner, and include concrete, measurable strategies for improvement. - unclear what does ‘concrete, measurable strategies’ imply? Also it’s a project management style writing.
  6. A high standard of politeness - Politeness is important, but what level does ‘high’ standard imply?
  7. Solidarity - This is a confusing and superfluous word to use. It comes with historical baggage and may be used like "brotherhood" or an indication that Wikimedians are of the same political class. It comes with the imagery of group religion, group think, even radicalization, to the extent that to be seen to be in solidarity you can expect to be under peer pressure to raise your virtual fist to show support with your brothers.
  8. Citizenship - Very American. The term of "citizenship" implies a set of responsibilities I am legally enforced to perform, actions I must do; I am not forced to make any of my contributions to any of the projects.
    1. What is meant by "solidarity"? And by "good citizenship"?
  1. sexual orientation, gender identity, sex or career field
  2. Changed to ‘Mutual Respect’
  3. Changed to “we will treat them with mutual respect”
  4. engage in constructive edits;
  5. Criticism should be delivered in a sensitive and constructive manner.
  6. Civility is politeness in behaviour and speech amongst people - removed ‘high standard’.
  7. Removed ‘Solidarity’ from the title of the sub-section.
  8. Changed to “Mutual support and good citizenship means….”
  1. Added the word as per community request.
  2. Modified to enhance clarity
  3. Modified to enhance clarity
  4. Removed ‘positive editing’ as per community’s request as some work requires mandatory negative editing
  5. Removed ambiguous words
  6. Removed ambiguous words
  7. Removed ambiguous words
  8. Simplified the phrase to enhance clarity.
Phrase Changes:
  1. Nor will we distinguish based on accomplishments, skills or standing
  2. Always assume good faith - Assume good faith is a very important rule guideline but the “always” part is problematic. At some point AGF is no longer warranted and actions must be taken to protect the project or other users. Maybe the wording should be changed here slightly? ( four users support dleting the word ‘always’.)
  3. Respect the way that contributors name and describe themselves- This is a huge problem, and why enwiki removed honorifics in article space. To explain why, suppose I say that my name is 107.242.121.53, M.D., and I am an expert in Glaswegian homeopathy. That clearly shouldn't go without scrutiny.
    1. I find this point problematic because of the differences in languages; and again: how universal and firm should this rule be? If someone wants to be addressed as Jedi Master, will I be banned if I don't comply?
    2. Similar concerns were brought in at Dutch Italian and German talk page as well.
    3. Similar concerns from the Spanish talk page, especially in regards to US citizens referring to themselves as ‘Americans’
  4. All the rules listed under ‘This includes but is not limited to’ should be desirable behavior but should not be enforced. Ex. people cannot be banned for not mentoring anyone or not thanking others for their contribution. It is easy to mandate civility, but respect, empathy, and solidarity?
    1. Mandating the given definitions of empathy and solidarity could honestly put anyone and everyone in violation of this thing. Same goes for respect.
  1. Nor will we distinguish based on standing, skills and accomplishments
  2. Removed the word ‘always’. Kept it as- Assume good faith.
  3. As a sign of respect, use these terms when communicating with or about these people, where linguistically or technically feasible.
  4. Added the phrase ‘ We strive towards the following behaviours’ on top of the section.
  1. Rearranging the terms to give them the appropriate weight.
  2. Changed as per community request
  3. Simplified the phrase to enhance clarity.
  4. Removing redundancy, providing more clarity
Additions
  1. where linguistically or technically feasible.
  2. We strive towards the following behaviours.
  3. Looking out for fellow contributors
  4. expected behaviour as per Universal Code of Conduct
  5. thank them for their help and work.
Removals
  1. Respect is showing regard for others.
  2. Positive editing
  3. and include concrete, measurable strategies for improvement.
  4. rather than the name historically used by others to describe them
  5. Show solidarity
  6. thank them for the help they have given you

Section 4 - Unacceptable BehaviourEdit

Community’s comments Changes made Rationale
Changes
Word Changes:
  1. In some cases, repeated mockery, sarcasm, or aggression may qualify as insults collectively - qualify is difficult to translate here to some languages
  2. No community comment
  1. may constitute insults
  2. knowledge or resources at the disposal of (elected) project functionaries > knowledge or resources at the disposal of designated functionaries
  1. Translatability
  2. Including functionaries that might not be elected and those not active on the projects, e.g. an event safety team
Phrase Changes:
  1. Stalking - In English Wikipedia this term is deprecated. Consider replacing with ‘Hounding’. Definition in the document leaves room for misinterpretation.
    1. what is defined here is "harassment", not stalking, which means only observing or waiting hidden, hidden, it does not imply any action against anyone
  2. The bullet ‘Doxing’ should be called ‘Disclosure of personal data (doxing)’
  3. sexual attention or advances of any kind - Change to "sexual attention or sexual advances" or "sexual attention/advances". Also add “against their wish’ to the sentence. Or "unwanted" in the beginning
    1. I think the language used, for example, in the point about sexual harassment is bad. I don't think it is clear enough what is "unsolicited sexual attention" or even "unsolicited sexual advances", especially by the qualifier "of any kind".
    2. Clarify the advances mentioned are sexual advances
    3. Unsolicited - The word "unsolicited" is not acceptable, because it would make any attempt of beginning a relationship by single people— or, in many cases, mere courtesy — punishable!
    4. Replace "unsolicited" and similar terms with something that is closer to "known or ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome and unrelated to improving the project" (this could obviously be worded better). It does two things; it adds some objectivity and reasonableness to the text and it allows for critical commentary that improves a user's contribution, unwelcome as such comments or reverts may be.Replace "unsolicited" and similar terms with something that is closer to "known or ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome and unrelated to improving the project" (this could obviously be worded better). It does two things; it adds some objectivity and reasonableness to the text and it allows for critical commentary that improves a user's contribution, unwelcome as such comments or reverts may be.
  4. “reputational harm to win an argument or force someone to behave the way you want” - Don’t understand why "reputational harm" was included, or the stated end goal of having an editor "behave the way you want". This could be applied to literally thousands of cases. If I am threatening an editor with a block if they continue to do a certain negative action, I am threatening, among other things, reputational harm in an effort to have them behave the way I (and the community) want.
    1. Change “Using the possibility of physical violence, legal action, unfair embarrassment, or reputational harm to win...” to “Using the possibility of physical violence, legal action, reputational harm or other unfair behaviours to win.. “
  5. following a person across the project and repeatedly critiquing their work with the intent to upset or discourage them - This is written without any understanding of what an admin's job looks like. If this gets in the final draft, it will doubtlessly be used as an excuse by every wikilawyering troll whose every edit has to be fixed or reverted by unthanked admins.
  6. Gaslighting - The use of the word Gaslighting and its definition is not clear to many language communities. It has translation issues, contextual issues and cultural issues.
    1. Additional discussions about what gaslighting is and isn’t on several language versions
  7. Deliberately introducing incorrect or biased content -- properly defining on a global level which content is truly "incorrect and biased" might be extremely hard, especially given that RS in English and local languages might have, umgh, opposite views on what is incorrect and what is biased due to differences in cultural background.
    1. It would be wise to completely remove these misguided attempts at the regulation of speech from here and leave the enforcing of the content rules entirely to the individual projects, where the staffing is way better and the editorial independence is at least plausible.
  8. the unwarranted, unjustified addition of symbols, images, or content with the intent to intimidate or harm others - How shall WMF determine "intent" in this manner?
  9. Repeated removal of Wikimedia content without appropriate peer review or constructive feedback for improvement - there can be legitimate reasons for this, summarised in the en-wp essay WP:DOLT, which cross-references a speech given by Jimmy Wales in 2006
  10. Hate speech against an individual is not listed (Italian)
  11. the unwarranted, unjustified addition of symbols, images, or content with the intent to intimidate or harm others - How shall WMF determine "intent" in this manner?
    1. The swastika is a good example to think about. That symbol has a long history before Nazi usage, in multiple cultures, with a variety meanings. Consider the user page for a Navajo, Hindu, or Jain Wikimedian on Meta or Commons (clearly inter-cultural spaces), whose cultures have positive connotations of that symbol. How should we deal with a Jewish and/or gay Wikimedian going to that page, and being traumatized, because their community's association of the symbol with Nazism?
  1. Replaced Stalking with Hounding
  2. Disclosure of personal data (Doxing): sharing other contributors’ private information, such as name, place of employment, physical or email address without their explicit consent either on the Wikimedia projects or elsewhere, or sharing information concerning their Wikimedia activity outside the projects.
  3. Sexual attention or advances of any kind towards others where the person knows or reasonably should know that the attention is unwelcome.
  4. unfair and unjustified reputational harm,
  5. Hounding: following a person across projects and repeatedly critiquing their otherwise satisfactory work mainly with the intent to upset or discourage them.
  6. Psychological manipulation: Maliciously causing someone to doubt their own perceptions, senses, or understanding with the objective to win an argument or force someone to behave the way you want.
  7. Deliberately introducing biased, false, inaccurate or inappropriate content, or hindering, impeding or otherwise hampering the creation (and/or maintenance) of content.
  8. The gratuitous, unjustified and decontextualized addition of symbols, images, or any kind of content with the intent to intimidate or harm others (or to impose an arbitrary scheme on content)
  9. The repeated arbitrary or unmotivated removal of any content without appropriate discussion or providing explanation
  10. Hate speech in any form, or discriminatory language aimed at vilifying, humiliating, inciting hatred against individuals or groups on the basis of who they are
  11. The gratuitous, unjustified and decontextualized addition of symbols, images, or any kind of content with the intent to intimidate or harm others (or to impose an arbitrary scheme on content)


  1. Per community request
  2. Translatability, community request
  3. Elaborated for clarification
  4. Elaborated for clarification
  5. Tightening language, taking in concepts that were brought up in the broader discussion
  6. Elaborated for clarification
  7. Translatability, refining the definition
  8. Elaborated for clarification
  9. Added gratuitous and decontextualized for clarification
  10. Providing more clarity
  11. Removing redundancy, providing more clarity
Additions
  1. This includes any behaviour intended primarily to intimidate, outrage or upset a person, or any behaviour where this would reasonably be considered the most likely main outcome.
  2. Sex as a protected category

' (Note: The terms “race” and “ethnicity” are included here as prohibited ways to distinguish people. The Wikimedia movement does not endorse these terms as meaningful distinctions among people and believes that they should not be used outside of prohibiting them as the basis for personal attacks).

  1. religion (or lack thereof)
  2. Hate speech in any form, or discriminatory language aimed at vilifying, humiliating, inciting hatred against individuals or groups on the basis of who they are or their personal beliefs
  3. We expect people with significant experience and connections in the movement to behave with special care because hostile comments from them may carry an unintended implication of creating threats from their friends and supporters.
  4. Systematically manipulating content to favour specific interpretations of facts or points of view (also by means of unfaithful or deliberately false rendering of sources, altering the correct way of composing editorial content)
  1. Trying to make the problem of determining intent easier.
  2. Following a community comment that pointed out how sex is different from gender and sexual orientation
  3. Clarification to address the many different perspectives on race and ethnicity around the world
  4. Following a community request
  5. Following a community request
  6. Clarification
  7. Clarification
Removals
  1. The Universal Code of Conduct aims to help community members identify situations of bad behavior and harassment.
  2. Many communities will have a higher standard than this and prefer to prohibit the publication of information published elsewhere on the internet but not shared on a Wikimedia project.
  3. Legal action
  4. Abuse of office by functionaries, officials and staff: misuse of authorities, knowledge or resources at the disposal of (elected) project functionaries, as well as officials and staff of the Wikimedia Foundation or Wikimedia affiliates to intimidate or threaten others or for their own material or immaterial benefit.
  1. Removing redundancy
  2. Communities can always go to higher standards, current practice not mentioned elsewhere in the document.
  3. Following a community comment that pointed out this was too generic.
  4. Removing redundancy