Why a Code of Conduct?

At the Global Digital Humanities Symposium we want everyone to feel welcome, included, and safe throughout the event. This Code of Conduct sets expectations for all participants, provides steps to report violations of the Code, and lists possible consequences for would-be-violators. The Global Digital Humanities Symposium does not tolerate harassment and discrimination in any form.

How to Be

In addition to abiding by the Michigan State University agreements for behavior (MSU Anti-Discrimination Policy; University Policy on Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct), the Global Digital Humanities Symposium sets a tone of encouragement for mutual respect and growth. In this spirit, participation in the Symposium is grounded in the following Community Agreements:

  • We encourage discussions that focus on the work, not the person.
  • We practice active listening and engagement.
  • We assume good intentions, but own negative effects.
  • We give credit where credit is due.
  • We value transparency.
  • We support one another’s work and welcome support for our own.
  • We value fair and transparent labor relationships, and we work actively to counter exploitation.

Behaviors NOT tolerated

Discrimination and harassment includes, but is not limited to:

  • Comments or actions that minimize a person’s experiences, identity, or safety
  • Deliberate misgendering or use of “dead” or rejected names
  • Deliberate “outing” of any person’s experiences or identity without their consent
  • Sustained disruption during sessions or other events or gatherings
  • Physical contact without consent or after a request to stop
  • Unwelcome sexual attention
  • Deliberate intimidation or stalking of any kind – in person or online
  • Collection (including unwanted selfies) or distribution of harassing photography or recordings without explicit consent.
  • Threats or acts of violence
  • Advocating for, or encouraging, any of the above behavior

Discrimination/harassment is not:

  • Feeling persecuted for your social privilege
  • “Reverse” -isms, including “reverse racism,” “reverse sexism,” and “cisphobia”
  • Reasonable communication of boundaries, such as “leave me alone,” “go away,” or “I’m not discussing this with you”
  • Refusal to explain or debate social justice issues when the person being asked is put in a defensive position based on their experience, personal identity, or safety
  • Communication in a ‘tone’ you don’t find congenial
  • Discussion of sensitive topics
  • Criticizing racist, sexist, cissexist, or otherwise oppressive behavior or assumptions

How to report a violation of the code of conduct*

If you have been involved or witnessed an incident during the Global DH Symposium that you believe violates this Code of Conduct, you can report it in three ways:    

  • In person: by making contact with the Global DH planning committee members (recognized by nametags indicating planning committee member)
  • Phone: call or text 1-517-481-2068
    • you will get a response within 2 hours
    • this phone number will be active through April 15, 2020
  • Online: email dh@msu.edu
    • you will get a response within 8 hours

The Global Digital Humanities Symposium Planning Committee will expeditiously and confidentially examine all incidents reported before, during, and after the Symposium. We reserve the right to take actions we deem necessary at any time to remedy disruptive behavior that renders the conference experience unsafe for participants. Anyone found to be in violation of this Code of Conduct may be subject to sanctions, including without limitation:

  • Immediate cessation of harassing or disruptive behavior
  • Immediate removal from the Symposium
  • Removal or declining to post a presenter’s talk online (if violation occurred during a presentation) 
  • Temporary or permanent ban from the Symposium Humanities Commons page
  • Temporary or permanent ban from any future Global Digital Humanities Symposia participation, attendance, reviewing, and/or planning

*Since many Program Committee members are mandatory reporters under Clery Act and Title IX, we may be required to follow the policies of Michigan State University for documenting and reporting instances of harassment that occur at Michigan State University.

This code of conduct is a living document, drafted by the Global Digital Humanities Planning Committee and approved on December 10, 2019, and is subject to change. Please direct questions and comments to dh@msu.edu.

Note: The Code of Conduct was updated March 18, 2020 to reflect the Symposium’s move to an online event in response to COVID-19.

This Code of Conduct was inspired by and references codes of conduct drafted by Museum Computer Network, The DIgital Library Federation, DIgital Frontiers, and the University of Kansas Institute for Digital Research in the Humanities.