One feature of this summit: we try to care for one another and we aim to keep things positive, supportive, and welcoming.
In order to keep such a culture thriving, I have to enforce a few rules, and while they may seem unnecessary, several past attendees encouraged me to write them down here, as a formal code of conduct.
In some online summits, as soon as you register, every speaker gets access to your email address. That is absolutely not what happens here. You decide who gets to email you. In fact, I don't even have a Facebook tracking pixel set up on the event.
By signing up for the summit, you agree only to receive email from me, the host. While you will have opportunities to sign up for each speaker's newsletter and offers -- and I encourage you to do so, because these are great people -- your personal information is yours to share -- or to not.
The second rule is: you agree not to be rude to the speakers.
You are, of course, allowed to dislike or disagree with their talk! In every event, you will probably find one presentation that doesn't work for you. That's normal. But it is not acceptable to insult speakers, demand multiple times that they answer your question, or post derogatory remarks in the chat.
This includes repeated, dramatic proclamations that the talk is too hard to understand, not what you expected, and so on. It's obviously fine to ask for clarification, definitions of terms, or a repeat of a key idea -- we are all learners here. But sometimes a single participant can talk so much about not getting the speaker's point that it becomes disruptive for everyone else.
I will politely remind the room of this rule if I see attendees breaking it what seems to be an absent-minded fashion. It's natural to ask for help in an educational event like this. However, people who are being rude maliciously will be removed from the event.
Complaints about the speaker's looks, vocal mannerisms, speed of delivery, accent etc are definitely included in this rule.
In addition, "compliments" about the speaker's looks are not acceptable during the summit sessions.
Of course, all of this is not to say you need to be a silent participant. Feel free to speak up, share your thoughts, and if there a tech problem you've noticed, mention it without hesitation! -- "You're still muted, speaker!" -- that's obviously fine.
For example, if the text on a speaker's slides is too small for you to read, please tell us ASAP. We will try to find a real-time solution.
On a related note (rule 1.1, perhaps): we should try to keep conversations in the chat relatively on track and relevant to the speaker's talk. Making quips, greeting other participants, and throwing out side references is great; getting into an argument with other attendees about a minor factual detail or your own pet theory is not okay. Similarly, sharing links to your own writing, blog etc is not banned, but not allowed while the presentation / interview is going on. Please wait until the Q&A portion or one of the happy hours / networking sessions.
The third rule covers both attendees and speakers (and me, the host):
As participants at this event:
- we agree not to make hurtful or discriminatory statements about people based on their race, gender, sexuality, age, ability / disability, or class.
(We also agree that it's much easier to get this stuff wrong than we like to think, and we all mess up from time to time. That does not mean, however, that we expect to be forgiven by default when we mess up, so we will stay open to hearing criticism, advice, and feedback if we crossed a line without realising, and commit to apologising and working to do better going forwards.)
- we agree not to correct each other's grammar or point out typos from our fellow attendees in the chat. It is easy for some people to keep up with a fast-moving chat box -- and harder for others -- but everyone is welcome here.
- we also agree not to post chat comments or share writing samples that contains slurs or gross stereotypes.
(You may well feel your intentions are good, but in a busy event like this, chat posts fly by in a split-second, and if your post doesn't pass the "this will concern Daniel and other attendees for more than a split-second," please edit before you post.)
The fourth rule is about me, Daniel, the host:
I agree to listen to your concerns and to take action if something is bothering you.
If I do something that concerns you, or a speaker does, feel free to reach out, either immediately or at any point in the future. There is no deadline here. We all know what it's like when something bad or weird happens and you just go quiet in the moment -- and then, a week later, wish you had said something. But there is no "too late" to contact me and alert me to something that didn't feel right: you can do so an hour, a week, a month, a year after the session ends.