#54 Create event organization best practices guide for D&I at Fedora events
Opened 3 years ago by amsharma. Modified 11 months ago

We have some great ideas for Fedora Events to be considered so that we can make our events more inclusive. Some of them are here below, please note that this is not a complete list and approval for each of them is pending for discussion. Inputs from everyone is appreciated -

1. Childcare Facility - Dealing with children while attending conferences is a problem that many parent may face. To avoid this issue, sometimes the best they can think of is canceling the travel itself and not attend the conference OR they must negotiate as they balance between the meetings and the child. There are many such conferences at present which provide this facility and It will be a great initiative for Fedora, if we can start doing it for our big events like Flock.

2. Quiet Rooms - It is always nice to have few quiet rooms a distance from the conference space, as there are several teams and people who wants to have meetings during the conference to discuss their agenda. Also, for introverts, especially at conferences that number over maybe 75 people, it can be mentally exhausting. It's easier when the venue is a hotel, but not always an option. @jflory7 may want to add more to this point.

3. Emergency Menstruation Needs - We had a separate ticket for this one. Pasting the content here and I will close that ticket as duplicate -
"As part of our desire to be inclusive and recognize the issues that certain communities may face, we'd like to figure out a way for Fedora to more responsive to emergency menstruation needs. Our goal is not to remove the responsibility for self-management and appropriate self-care from people to Fedora, but instead to support emergency issues so that, in this case, menstruating people can get supplies to use while they go out to get the proper supplies for their situation. This is similar to how a plaster/bandaid might be provided to cover a small wound while the person seeks appropriate medical attention.
This proposal only applies to events hosted/run by Fedora. Events run by third parties, even where Fedora is a sponsor are not included.
Proposal:
For events less than 8 hours in length, a sign is placed at the registration desk, and if possible in all of the bathrooms closest to the meeting space, that explains who to contact if you need information about where to buy personal supplies. If it is easy, this information can be printed directly on the sign.
For events lasting longer than 8 hours, the organizer of the event shall purchase (and be refunded by Fedora) a package of 10 sanitary napkins. A sign shall be placed at the registration desk, and if possible in all of the bathrooms closest to the meeting space, that explains who to contact if you need emergency menstruation supplies. The organizer is encouraged to make sure the supplies are easily accessible. Ideally the supplies will be located in a discrete space for self-service. If this is not possible, the organizer is encouraged to ensure that it is easy to get in contact with whomever has these supplies. At the end of the event the remaining sanitary napkins can be given to an attendee who will use them, donated or destroyed as the organizer sees fit."


Metadata Update from @bee2502:
- Issue tagged with: events, needs feedback, outreach

3 years ago

These all seem like great ideas. I have a few logistics related questions -

  1. How will diversity team support these initiatives? Is it just in terms of providing funding to event organizers to ensure these facilities?

  2. I remember from discussion that we wanted to implement these as guidelines and not strict rules. (This is not in the earloerticket, so just reconfirming this) Would it be better then that we ask the organizers to say whether they can provide these facilities or not in their event proposal/ budget request and an explanation if it's not possible? (Was this discussed too? @amsharma @jflory7 )

If the above two points are agreed upon, we can solicit feedback via mailing list. I also think that since FLOCK venue is being discussed right now, this is a good opportunity for us to talk with the FLOCK organizing team and ensure that the venue can support these plans.

Metadata Update from @bee2502:
- Issue tagged with: Open for voting, meeting

3 years ago

These all seem like great ideas. I have a few logistics related questions -

How will diversity team support these initiatives? Is it just in terms of providing funding to event organizers to ensure these facilities?

Sharing guidelines and support with funding if event organizers want to implement the guidelines. But, we need to figure out what can be the estimated cost for each one of these.

I remember from discussion that we wanted to implement these as guidelines and not strict rules. (This is not in the earloerticket, so just reconfirming this) Would it be better then that we ask the organizers to say whether they can provide these facilities or not in their event proposal/ budget request and an explanation if it's not possible? (Was this discussed too? @amsharma @jflory7 )

Explanation for not implementing the guidelines should not be required. There can be many reasons and let's not bound anyone to give explanations why they can't do these extra things and just support them who want to do it IMHO, thoughts?

If the above two points are agreed upon, we can solicit feedback via mailing list. I also think that since FLOCK venue is being discussed right now, this is a good opportunity for us to talk with the FLOCK organizing team and ensure that the venue can support these plans.

+1 , yupp. I agree.

These all seem like great ideas. I have a few logistics related questions -

How will diversity team support these initiatives? Is it just in terms of providing funding to event organizers to ensure these facilities?

Sharing guidelines and support with funding if event organizers want to implement the guidelines. But, we need to figure out what can be the estimated cost for each one of these.

I believe that the estimates would depend on the number of attendees, location etc. I don't think we can estimate some cost here. Should we instead put a cap on how much funding can be requested for this per event?

For FADs and FLOCK, I believe the funding can be added to event budget request instead of a separate funding from Diversity to streamline the process for organizers. I also think that since costs for FADs and FLOCK are relatively on the higher side as compared to release parties, some addition to the requested event budget can be managed without it coming from Diversity team budget.

I remember from discussion that we wanted to implement these as guidelines and not strict rules. (This is not in the earloerticket, so just reconfirming this) Would it be better then that we ask the organizers to say whether they can provide these facilities or not in their event proposal/ budget request and an explanation if it's not possible? (Was this discussed too? @amsharma @jflory7 )

Explanation for not implementing the guidelines should not be required. There can be many reasons and let's not bound anyone to give explanations why they can't do these extra things and just support them who want to do it IMHO, thoughts?

Why not? If we want to make this a norm, I would prefer us to have an opt-out approach rather than an opt-in. If there is a valid reason for why it cannot happen for that particular event, we should be the ones to know so that the same reason is not repeated over and over again. Especially if it's something like there are no women attendees, maybe we could do something about it together with organizers.

If the above two points are agreed upon, we can solicit feedback via mailing list. I also think that since FLOCK venue is being discussed right now, this is a good opportunity for us to talk with the FLOCK organizing team and ensure that the venue can support these plans.
+1 , yupp. I agree.

Metadata Update from @jflory7:
- Issue untagged with: meeting

3 years ago

Metadata Update from @bee2502:
- Issue untagged with: Open for voting

3 years ago

What do team think about adding one more point here for making new rule to support fragrance-conscious/allergic person ?

Detailed read - http://hedonish.com/accessibility-fragrance-and-chemical-sensitivities/

Thanks @misc for raising this.

Metadata Update from @amsharma:
- Issue tagged with: needs votes

3 years ago

Metadata Update from @bee2502:
- Issue untagged with: needs votes
- Issue tagged with: 2018 GOAL

3 years ago

It was decided in the last team meeting that @bee2502 will work on a draft proposal which will possibly be tested during FLOCK. The final guidelines will be launched post FLOCK after we receive feedback from community.

Metadata Update from @bee2502:
- Issue tagged with: meeting

3 years ago

Link to the draft: https://etherpad.persephone.cloud/p/FedoraEventGuidelines

This is just an information dump for now. I will try to make a proper doc out of it over the weekend. I was thinking instead of having guidelines, we could implement them in form of a scoring system. Every point would be related to a particular area. The more you score, the better. If you score below a threshold, you need to reconsider. This gives flexibility to organizers to target particular areas without worrying about everything else.

Discussed in 2018-04-27 meeting.

Feedback needed by Friday, May 4

Please review @bee2502's Etherpad for Fedora event guidelines before Friday, May 4 2018. It will help to check in earlier in the week for this too so we have a chance to review any feedback.

We didn't have a chance to discuss this in the meeting today.

We want to @bex's feedback as a Flock organizer to help us decide what is realistic to pursue for this year. We can leave any feedback in the Etherpad, but we will try to move forward with this at OSCAL ( #68 ) when we can see Brian in-person and go over it.

Some of it is happening for FLOCK! More info on discussion during OSCAL:
https://etherpad.gnome.org/p/fedora-diversity-tirana-sprint-2018

We also need to rewrite the guidelines so we can ask for feedback during FLOCK. Help appreciated.

Metadata Update from @bee2502:
- Issue untagged with: next meeting

3 years ago

@recursedd Will work on a pitch for CommBlog post introducing event guidelines rough draft and asking for feedback from community by Wednesday, June 27

https://meetbot.fedoraproject.org/fedora-diversity/2018-06-22/diversity.2018-06-22-13.09.html

Since this is already late, I think mid July would be a good hard deadline for this

@recursedd Ping – did you have any luck starting a draft on introducing the event guidelines? Is there anything we can do to help?

Metadata Update from @jflory7:
- Issue untagged with: needs feedback
- Issue assigned to recursedd
- Issue priority set to: urgent (1-2 weeks)
- Issue set to the milestone: Fedora 29 (to Oct. 2018)

3 years ago

No I didn't start on this. It got unassigned in the last meeting. I will
take this up and come up with basic pitch asap.

On Sat, Jul 14, 2018 at 5:43 AM, Justin W. Flory pagure@pagure.io wrote:

The issue: Create event organization best practices guide for D&I at Fedora events of project: fedora-diversity has been assigned to
recursedd by jflory7.

https://pagure.io/fedora-diversity/issue/54

Metadata Update from @jflory7:
- Issue priority set to: waiting on external (was: next meeting)
- Issue set to the milestone: Fedora 30 (to May 2019) (was: Fedora 29 (to Oct. 2018))

3 years ago

I will add this as a topic for our next meeting.

Metadata Update from @jonatoni:
- Assignee reset

2 years ago

Metadata Update from @jonatoni:
- Issue tagged with: meeting

2 years ago

Just a previous update:

We decided to use numFOCUS DISCOVER Cookbook as an outline to build Fedora Event guidelines.
https://github.com/numfocus/DISCOVER-Cookbook.
Here is the pagure clone for that: https://pagure.io/fedora-diversity/Fedora-Event-Guidelines

We can track its progress in the repo itself. I think this task still needs a lot of work even for a first draft.

Metadata Update from @bee2502:
- Issue tagged with: difficulty - hard, help wanted, improvement, new change, type - docs, type - hackfest

2 years ago

We may need a dedicated team meeting for only this one..

Metadata Update from @jflory7:
- Issue set to the milestone: None (was: Fedora 30 (to May 2019))

2 years ago

I propose we have some time at our FLOCK hackfest for this

Metadata Update from @jflory7:
- Issue untagged with: improvement, type - hackfest
- Issue assigned to bee2502
- Issue priority set to: next meeting (was: waiting on external)

2 years ago

Discussed in 2019-07-15 meeting.


Current status

@bee2502 gave a quick update on current status of the event guidelines. As mentioned previously, we want to use the NumFOCUS cookbook as a base for our own guidelines. This way, we can reduce the work of our time to write guidelines and benefit from the existing work done by an upstream community (who has likely gone through the same challenges we faced in coming up with guidelines and getting feedback).

Next steps

In the meeting, @bee2502 suggested to divide this ticket by having multiple folks read a section of the guidelines and sharing notes about takeaways we could use in the Fedora community. This would give us an opportunity to have some discussion on the content and how we want to apply.

@bee2502 I was curious what the final deliverable for this ticket will look like. What would need to be true for us to close this ticket as complete?

Metadata Update from @jflory7:
- Assignee reset
- Issue priority set to: waiting on external (was: next meeting)
- Issue tagged with: improvement, type - hackfest

2 years ago

Metadata Update from @jflory7:
- Issue untagged with: type - hackfest
- Issue assigned to bee2502
- Issue priority set to: waiting on assignee (was: waiting on external)

2 years ago

I've taken some time to read the Cookbook and here are my first thoughts:

  • Minimal Measures
    Organizing Committee they empathize on selecting a Leader who represents a minority, however, anyone who shows a true interest on Diversity & Inclusion should be up for the role
    Venue Selection & On-Site Services The gender neutral bathrooms might not be available in all countries yet. It could be a suggestion but not mandatory.
    Code of Conduct (CoC) Having a short version either printed at the Venue or sent as a reminder through email to those attending sounds like a good idea to empathize
    Event Registration & Assessment of the event They recommend to ask for specific info that might look like a survey. Would this be an issue with Legal?
    Childcare & Grants/Scholarships Childcare financing and Schoolarships might not apply to our events. So we could get rid of those sections.

  • Organizing Committee
    Team it's more information and recommendations to form a team, and events are already organized by diverse people. Maybe we can exclude this section or just make a small note that anyone at Fedora can organize an event?

  • Venue
    Create Access Visual & Hearing Disabilities At some events it might be easier to ask in advance if any attendee needs a translator, sing-language interpreter, or so; and have people from the same community to help. It will all depend on budget.
    Microphones Include a whiteboard at the main check up table to have the important announces visible. Something that can easy be rewritten as per convenience.
    Bathrooms Again, will depend on the venue accommodations.

  • Catering
    Fedora Events not always offers catering, so a list of restaurants around the venue indicating the type of foods offered should provide some assistance.

  • Childcare
    Financial Support I'm not sure this would apply to Fedora events. Parents are more than welcome to attend, and a quiet room would be easy to offer. Having a paid daycare would depend entirely on budget.

  • CoC
    Awareness it all looks pretty good, specially having available a Resume
    Reporting goes through who? Would D&I team help on this task somehow?

  • Grants
    Mindshare has been doing a terrific job with funds.
    FundingThere's a paragraph that says "Applicants should be from a traditionally underrepresented and/or marginalized group". I don't think this paragraph is necessary and can be used only the latter one stating "Applicants should be unable to attend without some financial assistance"
    Scholarships Fedora events are free to participate, entry fee is optional. i don't think this section applies to our events.

  • Speakers
    Invited Speakers I like the section about inviting people. There's a lot of talented and inspiring people inside our community that is either shy or feels impostor syndrome, and never fill up tickets.
    Call For Proposals review Our ticket system ask anyone who submits a proposal if they have special needs for their talks, we could add a question about special needs to attend (accessibility, mobility, translators, etc) as well.

  • Registration
    Attendance I don't remember if all the suggestions from the Cookbook were at the eventbrite registration page (food, mobility, language, photo policy, tshirts, etc). Would be worth to give it a look.
    Demographic Info I would love to gather more results, but again, this sounds like a Survey, and we have that issue with Legal. How could we approach it?

  • Check In Practices
    I think everything included here is ask at eventbrite. Wouldn't hurt to check and confirm.

  • Assessment
    Again, they recommend following surveys. Legal.

The updated document is here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1JPKSTOHPNIhMPxeKsGwJH7KJbKtIFb-tc4i0ZrqFh_Y/edit?usp=sharing

Please leave feedback (please read the note on how to leave feedback before commenting)

@tatica thanks for your feedback, I have added it to the doc. Just to make it clear,

  • These guidelines are written for all event organizers in Fedora eg. from local community events like release parties to global conference like FLOCK.
  • Everything mentioned here is a suggestion and none of the guidelines are compulsory for Fedora event organizers. For more information, please read ‘How to use this guide’ section before your proceed to give feedback.

I think this should address some of the concerns of low vs high effort suggestions. From now on, let us comment in the doc.

Discussed in 2019-07-15 meeting.

Current status
@bee2502 gave a quick update on current status of the event guidelines. As mentioned previously, we want to use the NumFOCUS cookbook as a base for our own guidelines. This way, we can reduce the work of our time to write guidelines and benefit from the existing work done by an upstream community (who has likely gone through the same challenges we faced in coming up with guidelines and getting feedback).
Next steps
In the meeting, @bee2502 suggested to divide this ticket by having multiple folks read a section of the guidelines and sharing notes about takeaways we could use in the Fedora community. This would give us an opportunity to have some discussion on the content and how we want to apply.
@bee2502 I was curious what the final deliverable for this ticket will look like. What would need to be true for us to close this ticket as complete?

The doc is here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1JPKSTOHPNIhMPxeKsGwJH7KJbKtIFb-tc4i0ZrqFh_Y/edit?usp=sharing

At FLOCK, the activity can be as following:

I would suggest everyone to first read the following sections:
Introduction
Important note on leaving feedback
* How to use this guide
to get a basic overview of the proposal. Following this, attendees (individually or in group) can pick one section such that we maximize the number of sections covered, and evaluate the guidelines based on following :

  1. Select a section of interest and think about the following for each of the suggested guidelines in that section:
    a. Is this relevant for Fedora community? If no, why not and how can we make it more relevant?
    b. As an event organizer, Is this guideline clearly understandable? If not, what is unclear?
    c. What are the efforts (low, medium, high) and impact (low, medium, high) needed to implement this guideline as an organizer of a local Fedora community event eg. Release Party?
    For example, please identify “low effort- high impact” guidelines as 🍎and “high effort-high impact” guidelines as ✅
    d. Do you need more resources to implement this guideline and/or support from Fedora D&I Team?

  2. What do you think of general rule for evaluation mentioned in ‘How to use this guide’ section i.e. “As a general rule, we encourage conference organizers to implement all of the 🍎 measures and at least one of the ✅ suggestions.”
    a. Is this feasible for smaller local community events like Release Parties?
    b. For global community conferences eg. FLOCK, FUDCONs, should this rule be different? If so, what?

In the end, we can ask people to give a short 2 min talk about their findings and results.

@bee2502 can we have an update on this ticket after the session we had at Flock?

Sorry for the late reply! During the session, using the proposed activity, we were able to collect in-depth feedback about each section which is written in comments in the doc. However, one major problem was the document is tproblemoo long and it raises concerns over if and how can event organizers can use it without feeling an additional burden especially if its an event with <100 people as is the case with most Fedora community-organized events IMO

I have been thinking about this problem and have reached the conclusion that there is no one solution which can be used for all different kinds of events . My current proposal is instead of making a guideline document we should aim for something like a shorter checklist (of max 10 suggestions, non-comprehensive but highly relevant to Fedora community) which event organizers can use to check how diverse and inclusive their event is or in which area related to D&I their event falls short in. We also provide suggested solutions on how to solve the issues in the checklist. If they want to go above and beyond this checklist and improve D&I in their event even more, we can ask them to refer to the original NUMFOCUS guidelines book or open a ticket with Fedora D&I team and we can work with them to improve D&I in their event. This way we can have a good MVP for this huge initiative and depending on the feedback and number of event organizers interested in this, we can decide on additions to the checklist later on.

For event organizers who expect 100+ attendees, I think we can suggest them open a ticket with our team and we work together with them based on the funding, logistics, time, region, etc. as I think based on these factors suggestions vary a lot eg. childcare, gender-neutral bathrooms etc. I don't expect any other events apart from FLOCK/FUDCON to fall in this category and I feel for such events working together with the organizers is better than just providing a guideline document to get better context of issues.

I hope this makes sense. Let me know if you have any questions. I will post a draft of the proposed checklist soon.

The draft for the proposed checklist is below. It is a bit long (though much much smaller than our original guidelines) but without the solutions it will be just 8 questions i.e. 8 lines. It is also in the begiining of our google doc: The doc is here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1JPKSTOHPNIhMPxeKsGwJH7KJbKtIFb-tc4i0ZrqFh_Y/edit?usp=sharing

[ ] Do you have any speakers from underrepresented communities and first-time speakers?

We encourage you to reach beyond the event organizers' own networks. Fedora D&I team plans to keep and maintain a list of possible speakers from the Fedora community with expertise and their contact info whom you could reach out to. We ask you to ensure that any panels and roundtables include a diversity of participants Additionally, we suggest you incentivize and encourage first time speakers especially from local Fedora communities. Let potential speakers know there are resources to help them prepare and provide them with these eg. Global CFP Day Blog .

[ ] Have you taken any steps to attract attendees from underrepresented backgrounds?

We encourage you to pay attention to the diversity (eg. gender, race, age) reflected in the photos you use to advertise your event. Advertise and explain the event to organizations whose membership you’d like to convince to attend your event eg. open-source clubs, women in computer science clubs at universities. Additionally, we encourage you to request D&I related swag to make the event feel more inclusive to attendees from diverse backgrounds.

[ ] Have you provided speakers with recommendations or resources to ensure their presentations are accessible by all?

Encourage speakers to use clear language, large and legible fonts like Arial, Calibri, or Times New Roman, and high colour contrast (can be checked using online color contrast checker ) and avoid italics and specialty or decorative fonts for their presentations. Ask speakers to provide captions and visuals where possible for audio, and provide descriptions where possible for visuals. Encourage speakers to consider color-blindness in slide design. Ask speakers to leave blank space at the lower part of the slides should the captioning technology platform used cover any text.

[ ] Are the attendees informed about the Code of Conduct and is it easily accessible to them?

Make sure that everyone involved in your event is aware that the CoC applies to them: that not only includes participants but also speakers, sponsors, committee members, etc, and how and where to access it. Ask potential speakers to ensure the content of their talk abides by the code of conduct. We encourage you to mention the CoC in the welcome talk and at the start of every day, including how to access it and who to contact if there is a problem/violation.

[ ] Have you made any provisions to accommodate attendees with disabilities?

Organizers should ensure that the microphone is used at all times (even if the speaker thinks their voice is loud enough) and encourage speakers to repeat questions from the audience over the mic so that everyone can hear. If you plan to print any information, make sure the font is large (>30 pt) so that it is easily readable. If seating arrangement is up to the organizers, we encourage you to create wide aisles (2.5m so two power chairs can pass each other) between chairs to make it easier for people who are mobility-impaired to navigate the room and reserve easily-accessible seats, such as at the end of a row on the aisle for people who need it (eg. with crutches, canes). When possible, we encourage you to choose a wheelchair-accesible venue or make remote access available via livestream, recorded talks, etc.

[ ] If you are providing food at the event, have you tried to account for different dietary needs?

We encourage you to have a sign/small label in front of each dish with a list of ingredients and common labels (e.g. "gluten-free, vegan, includes peanuts"). If you are offering beverages, make sure to include a variety, in particular non-alcoholic and non-caffeinated. Plan to have food options which cover different common dietary needs like gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, vegetarian, nut free - especially peanut, kosher, halal etc

[ ] Have you made any provisions to make participants(attendees and speakers) feel more included?

We encourage organizers to make different pin/buttons/ribbons available at registration to indicate photo preferences (green = photos fine; yellow = ask first; red = no photos). Similarly, they can be used to communicate pronouns. If this is not possible, attendees can consider writing the text on their badges. We encourage organizers to run a mentoring program that matches experienced attendees with first-timers for networking or run a "First-Time Attendee" lunch/dinner/coffee-break as a welcome and safe place for attendees to ask questions. Additionally, If having panel discussions is part of the program, appoint a moderator to make sure each member of each panel is given an equal opportunity to speak and avoid having panelists monopolize the discussion. Research shows that men are more likely to ask a question during Q&As; however, this changes if the first question is asked by a woman. If you are taking one question at a time, try starting with a woman, member of a minority group, or early-career professional whenever possible.

[ ] Do you have any plans to collect feedback after the event?

Organizers can survey participants after the event to establish whether the diversity and inclusion measures had an effect. A fast and quick method is to have a whiteboard or a notebook with a few feedback questions (eg. What did you like the most about the event? What did you not like?) where participants can leave feedback before leaving the event. We encourage you to communicate any findings to your fellow organizing committee as well as the D&I Team.

Let me know your feedback.

To provide feedback on this ticket, think on the following questions

  • As an event organizer, how easy or difficult do the suggestions in the answers seem to implement?
  • Do positive responses to 100% of the questions on the checklist seem easy or difficult to achieve?
  • Do positive responses to 50% of the question of the checklist seem easy or difficult to achieve?

This thread is too long to understand the key takeaways clearly. However, If we have the content ready, Best Practices for D&I Events will go under the Policy drop down as a separate page in the of our D&I docs.

Metadata Update from @jflory7:
- Assignee reset
- Issue untagged with: improvement, type - outreach
- Issue priority set to: needs review (was: waiting on assignee)

11 months ago

I am opening this ticket back up. Now that our docs have been better organized and structured, I think we can add these event guidelines into the events/ module in our docs.

So, what is the ask?

To close this issue, I suggest taking the existing Google Doc that @bee2502 put together and converting it into an AsciiDoc page:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1JPKSTOHPNIhMPxeKsGwJH7KJbKtIFb-tc4i0ZrqFh_Y/edit?usp=sharing

To make it a little bit easier, I converted this Google Doc into an AsciiDoc page, attached to this reply. This can be a base for the new page, but it will need a lot of manual cleaning up before it is ready to publish.

Fedora_Event_Guidelines.adoc

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