Implementing NEAR Community Guidelines

Hey everyone,

Goal

To clearly define the rules of the forum in order to mitigate spam, encourage a positive environment, and share basic guidelines on how to interact with others in the NEAR Community.

Below is a proposal for general community guidelines which will pertain to everyone participating in the NEAR Governance Forum.

This will be sent as a welcome message to every new user who signs up.

As is always the case in an open-source ecosystem like NEAR, I’d love to hear your input on how this can be improved - any and all feedback is welcomed and encouraged!

Unashamedly, much of this is pulled from the Github Community Guidelines by @nf_erik

Welcome to the NEAR Governance Forum!

At NEAR, we’re dedicated to open-source innovation, and that starts with an open-source community filled with positivity, active engagement, and respect.

NEAR Community Culture

The NEAR Governance Forum (“the Forum”), and the wider community, serve to nurture the development of the NEAR ecosystem, the community, and the incredible innovation stemming from it.

The culture of the NEAR Community is one of openness, inclusiveness, and positivity.

Oh, and don’t get us wrong - we bet you’re already awesome and reflect that ethos entirely. But, just in case, the community has put together some guidelines to keep us all on track.

Values

The rules and guidelines of this forum have been sculpted to reflect the five core values of the NEAR Foundation.

Ecosystem First

Always put the health and success of the ecosystem above any individual’s interest.

The focus of all members on the forum should be the growth and development of the NEAR Ecosystem. We will not tolerate intentional disruption, subterfuge, or any act which amounts to ‘trolling’.

Openness

Operate transparently and consistently share knowledge to build open communities

The forum, by its very nature, is open, accessible, and transparent. Feel free to share your thoughts and ideas on anything and everything NEAR.

Pragmatism Over Perfection

Find the right solution not the ideal solution and beat dogmatism by openly considering all ideas.

The NF doesn’t play favorites and is ultimately here to make everyone successful, regardless of where they come from. We are here to BUIDL, and this forum is another tool in the arsenal of the NEAR Ecosystem which will allow us to achieve success. All ideas, regardless of what they are and who they’re from, are welcome in the NEAR Forum.

Make It Feel Simple

Strive to make the complex feel simple so the technology, platform and ecosystem are accessible to all.

The NEAR Ecosystem is global and, naturally, not everyone speaks English as their first language. Let’s keep our discussion as accessible as possible, but don’t shy away from the complex when necessary.

Grow Constantly

Learn, improve and fail productively so the ecosystem and the community are always becoming more effective.

We’re not just here to BUIDL awesome dApps and NEAR fuelled solutions, we’re here to BUIDL ourselves and each other too! There is a tonne of amazing people here (including you) who we can all learn from and teach.

Ultimately, if you’re ever asking yourself ‘should I post this on the forum’ ask yourself if it aligns with the 5 values above. If it does, and it doesn’t violate any other guidelines, fire away :muscle:

Guidelines

Much like the blockchain itself, the NEAR Community does not discriminate against participants based on their color, creed, sex, or background. In this respect, we will not tolerate derogatory comments within the Forum whatsoever.

This amounts to comments on another user’s:

  • Race
  • Nationality
  • Gender
  • Sexuality
  • Age
  • Programming skills

That list isn’t exhaustive, and you should keep in mind the below guidelines when posting anything in the Forum or in the wider NEAR community.

When on the Forum, you should:

  1. Treat others online as you would treat them in real life;

  2. Be tolerant towards other’s viewpoints; respectfully disagree when opinions do not align;

  3. Respect the privacy and personal information of other contributors;

  4. Communicate with courtesy and respect;

  5. Provide accurate information, if you are not sure, please cross-check or contact someone from the NEAR Core team for support;

You should not:

  1. Make personal attacks on other community members;

  2. Use defamatory remarks or make false statements against others;

  3. Post prejudiced comments or profanity;

  4. Post discriminating content;

  5. Bully or make inflammatory remarks to other community members;

  6. Post spam

Failing to adhere to these rules may result in a permanent ban from the NEAR Governance Forum without warning.

What Should I Do if I'm Feeling Attacked or Uncomfortable?

If you or someone you know is feeling attacked or uncomfortable on the NEAR Governance Forum, or you have identified posts that are in violation of the above guidelines, then please report the offending posts using the report system.

How Do I Report a Post?

  1. Hit the flag icon beneath the offending post

report flag

  1. Select a category and hit 'Flag Post’

image

  1. All done :white_check_mark: Your post has been sent to the admins for review

On that note, a huge welcome to the NEAR Community, we’re excited to BUIDL with you! :muscle:

8 Likes

So important to have something like this in place :clap::clap::clap: Can you include a clear CTA for someone to take if they are feeling attacked or uncomfortable?

Done!

Would love to hear any further feedback before firing

1 Like

This is set up and running now :tada:

If anyone has any further comments or suggestions, please do shoot them here.

Thanks David! Could you add this in a way that it’ll persist, for example the Wiki? That way we can permalink to a living document which becomes the moderator’s guide and moderators, when they take actions, can link to it as an explanation for why they are taking a particular action.

Realistically, we need 2 docs:

  1. Community guidelines (basically, “what are we holding ourselves to?”)
  2. Moderator operating manual (basically, as a moderator, what should I do to enforce those?)

2 additional suggestions:

  1. Link each of the community guidelines directly back to our community values. The exact words to describe these values are slightly different depending if you look at NF postings like this or Illia’s post but the message is the same. And it’s important that people know community guidelines aren’t just rigid processes but they’re actually meant to support the overall goals of all of us to take reasonable risks and empower people on the way to supporting the ecosystem to achieve mass adoption. If you actually prioritize the values from 1 to 5, you can actually create a simple rubric that anyone can use to make decisions that fall in a gray zone, which is best.

  2. Link to some best practices that have been helpful for other communities that have navigated these waters before (which is pretty much all of them). That way it’s clear our best practices are being supported by the work of others.

  3. Have an open alignment call for moderators to align around how to actually enforce the values.

I suspect the community will need a voice to revisit these guidelines over time as well, so building in a simple process to have an open conversation around them is important. You’ll always run into conflict zones between opinions that any action/censorship is bad and opinions that a community needs to be curated to be effective, but at least it should be an open conversation over time so no one feels like they’ve lost their ability to voice or create change in the future.

Thanks again for pushing this forward!

1 Like

Hey Erik,

Absolutely, let’s make it living and evergreen.

Will proceed with incorporating it into the Wiki ASAP.

Whilst I was doing some legwork on this I stumbled across these guidelines. It was more of an accidental discovery, so I think we can work to refine these and highlight them, too.

I suspect the community will need a voice to revisit these guidelines over time as well, so building in a simple process to have an open conversation around them is important

The forum is an ideal place for this, for sure. We can create a more ‘perma-thread’, rather than this suggestion, to nurture the discussion around this.

There are a number of other moderation-related threads out there worth consolidating too in a reference so people don’t have to pull them together, eg Update on NEAR Community Moderators - #3 by grace

1 Like

Thank you for clarifying
On the Internet and Blockchain :slight_smile: sometimes people forget that they interact with real person. They can easily get angry and break hearts. I saw many examples of this on other social channels but Near Community is respectful and fair to each other. Let’s keep it that way.

3 Likes

Updates

Quick update on this front:

  • I’ll be refining these guidelines to include the values of the NEAR Community.

  • Once refined, the updated guidelines will be included here and on the Wiki

  • We’ll be knocking up a ‘Moderation Cheat Sheet’, essentially a ‘how-to’ when it comes to moderating the Governance Forum

  • Align the current evergreen Forum guidelines

As with everything in the NEAR Ecosystem, these docs are living and have plenty of opportunity to grow. If anybody wants to chime in with their ideas (or rip mine apart, please do!), then feel free :tada:

2 Likes

Updates

  • I’ll be refining these guidelines to include the values of the NEAR Community.

Done :white_check_mark: Have amended the current guidelines above. Would love to hear feedback on this.

  • Once refined, the updated guidelines will be included here and on the Wiki

Enshrined in the ever growing NEAR Wiki :white_check_mark:

  • We’ll be knocking up a ‘Moderation Cheat Sheet’, essentially a ‘how-to’ when it comes to moderating the Governance Forum
  • Align the current evergreen Forum guidelines

These two are still in the works.

To add to this:

Will be pursuing this too. Open call for all admins/moderators to discuss how best to enforce the above and put together a moderation playbook

3 Likes