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Draft RIPE Code of Conduct Team: Appointment and Responsibilities

This draft document has been produced by the Code of Conduct Task Force. Any discussion of this draft should take place on the RIPE Discussion List.

Comments are also invited on the accompanying procedural document.

Deadline for comments: 30 September 2022

The Code of Conduct (CoC) Team is responsible for handling any reports that someone has breached the RIPE Code of Conduct. The team therefore plays an important part in keeping RIPE an open and inclusive community that encourages participation. This document describes how people are appointed to the CoC Team, the team’s composition, and its responsibilities. 

1. Appointment of Code of Conduct Team Members

Members of the RIPE community can volunteer to join the CoC Team at any time. Volunteers are encouraged even when the team is full, as this will help to ensure continuity.

Candidates can nominate themselves or be nominated by others. Candidates must be supported by at least one person from the RIPE community to be considered.

The RIPE Chair appoints candidates to serve on the CoC Team at their own discretion. To avoid offence or reputational damage, the RIPE Chair must not justify their decisions about who to include on the CoC Team.

The RIPE Chair must take the team’s diversity into account when appointing candidates. Some dimensions to consider include (but are not limited to):

  • Age
  • Cultural background
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Gender
  • Language skills
  • Professional background

The RIPE NCC Managing Director selects RIPE NCC staff to serve on the CoC Team.

2. Team Composition and Terms

The CoC Team must have at least five members. Two will be RIPE NCC staff, and the rest will be volunteers from the RIPE community. RIPE NCC staff must have relevant professional expertise to serve on the CoC Team.

Term Limits

RIPE community members serve two-year terms on the Code of Conduct Team. They can serve a second consecutive term if they wish. Terms must be staggered so that the entire team does not change every two years. Community members can serve additional terms following a two-year break from the team.

RIPE NCC staff can serve one five-year term on the CoC Team.

Unscheduled Vacancies

An unscheduled vacancy arises if a member of the CoC Team needs to resign before the end of their term for whatever reason.

In this case, the RIPE Chair or the RIPE NCC Managing Director must appoint a new member to the team within six weeks (depending on whether a community member or RIPE NCC staff member resigned).

Local Host Liaison

The local host of a RIPE Meeting or other event may provide a liaison for the CoC Team to advise on language and cultural issues. This person should be available to advise the team on request. They are not responsible for making decisions regarding specific reports and do not have access to reports.

3. Overview of Responsibilities

Members of the CoC Team are responsible for investigating reported breaches of the RIPE Code of Conduct according to an [established process]. CoC Team members must be discreet and respect the privacy of community members when carrying out this work. Members of the CoC Team members must also refrain discussing the team’s decisions in public, unless speaking on its behalf. 

Candidates appointed to the Code of Conduct Team must complete training before they can become active members of the team. The RIPE NCC will arrange this training and cover all costs.

Members of the Code of Conduct Team must attend at least one RIPE meeting each year. They are eligible for financial support to attend RIPE Meetings when needed. The RIPE NCC will provide the same support that it gives to Working Group Chairs.

The RIPE community does most of its work on mailing lists, and intersessional webinars and other events are also becoming more common. CoC Team members are not expected to subscribe to every list or attend every intersessional event.

Time Commitment

Members of the Code of Conduct Team should expect to dedicate time to the role. This is likely to involve:

  1. Two days of training before becoming an active member of the CoC Team.
  2. Two-to-four hours of time during each RIPE Meeting.
  3. Several hours between RIPE Meetings.

Workload will ultimately depend on the number and nature of reports that are submitted. Reports can be made at any time, and so this is impossible to predict.

Appendix A – Initiation Process

To start the CoC Team, the RIPE Chair will initially appoint three RIPE community members of the Code of Conduct Team. One of these members will be appointed for a one-year term. The other two will be appointed for a two-year term. The intent of this step is to ensure an appropriate overlap between members of the CoC Team.