Universal Code of Conduct/Draft proposal from User:Pine
Specific behavioral rules and norms are generally to be decided by each local community. However, there are a few issues which may be best addressed by a Universal Code of Conduct Committee. These circumstances are discussed below, and the resolution of them is delegated to the Universal Code of Conduct Committee.
Universal behavioral policies
- Each wiki community normally is to set its own behavioral policies and methods for enforcing them at the local level. When a community cannot agree on these policies and how to enforce them, the community may request outside support in the form of mediation for guidance. The Universal Code of Conduct Committee may get involved if a dispute, typically a large scale dispute, appears to fall into categories described below and has not been resolved by outside mediation.
Authorities of the Universal Code of Conduct Committee
- Where the governance of a Wikimedia project or another WMF conduct review organization has allegedly been compromised so extensively that removal of all of its administrators, functionaries, and/or other authorities should be considered for the purpose of providing a relatively "clean start" for reforming the affected domain's governance, or a domain is allegedly becoming so anarchic that peacekeeping from outsiders is necessary to restore order.
- By default, the Universal Code of Conduct Committee should assume good faith regarding local consensus and/or the actions of a local arbitration committee, if they exist, and a global code of conduct committee should by default assume that any local consensus decisions and the decisions of a local arbitration committee are legitimate. These default positions may be changed if there is significant evidence suggesting that there should be a review of the situation by outsiders.
- Where a steward, global sysop, Meta administrator, member of a committee such as the Affiliations Committee or Elections Committee, or other person in a similarly "meta" online position has allegedly misused their position, and other options have been exhausted or would involve publicly revealing evidence for which there is a very strong reason for privacy.
- Where the Ombudsman Commission has found fault with actions that are under its authority to review and recommends that individuals be sanctioned.
- In the circumstances where, presently, WMF asserts a global ban. Although WMF would continue to be involved in investigations and in enforcing global ban decisions, the decision to impose a global ban would be exclusively held by the UCCC.
The universal code of conduct and the UCC Committee would not have responsibility for and should not be involved in:
- Disputes which focus on one or a relatively small number of individuals, with the exception of allegations mentioned in the section above. A global code of conduct committee could easily be overwhelmed by the number of cases, and local administrators and functionaries who have good knowledge of a project's policies, guidelines, and language(s) are usually best placed to address these disputes.
- Content disputes.
- Functioning as a thin layer of cover for WMF-driven actions or acting as an extension of WMF.
- Because diverse opinions and expressions must be permitted, even when comments may offend others, the Universal Code of Conduct Committee must not silence debates or unwelcome comments for the purpose of making people feel safe or preventing them from feeling offended. The Internet is not a safe place, and no amount of heavy policing will effectively guarantee safety on a large scale. Also, heavy policing can have the effects of stifling uncomfortable debates and providing cover for incompetence and corruption. In some cases, problems with content may be resolved as a secondary effect of resolving problems with conduct.
Election of members
There will be 7 members of the Universal Code of Conduct Committee, and each will serve one year or two year terms. In the first election the four candidates with the most support will serve two year terms, and the remaining elected candidates will serve one year terms. All candidates must receive at least 55% support to be elected, and if an insufficient number of candidates receive 55% support to fill all seats then the remaining seats will be vacant until the next election. Elections will be public and conducted in the same manner as Steward elections. Minimum qualifications for the office of Steward are also required for candidates for the UCCC. However, unlike with stewards, existing members of the UCCC who are willing to serve additional terms must run for reelection, and there is no reconfirmation process.