Hackspace Rules

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This isn't an exhaustive list of rules. As with most shared spaces, rules are better explained than dictated, so please talk to people in the space if you're unsure what's OK, but please follow these two:

Top Level Rules

Rule 0: Do Not Be On Fire

A hacker may not be on fire, cause a fellow hacker to be on fire, or through inaction allow a fellow hacker to be on fire.

This rule doesn't just cover fire, but all forms of safety. The space provides PPE such as goggles, breathing masks, and gloves for people to wear while doing dangerous things.

Examples:

  • Don't use high-power lasers unless everyone who might get harmed is wearing goggles.
  • If you're hooking DIY things up to mains electricity, ask someone to look over your circuit before plugging it in, and use an RCD.
  • If you're cutting things with a dremel cutting disk, wear goggles! A shattering 3000rpm abrasive disk in your eyes is not a good time.

Rule 1: Be excellent to each other (follow the code of conduct)

A hacker should treat each and every other hacker with the respect we feel we deserve ourselves.

We want our Hackspace to be somewhere that people can enjoy making things in a safe, harassment free environment. Anybody who is in the Hackspace, attending an event organised by the space Hackspace or is using any of the Hackspace communication channels (IRC, Mailing List or Telegram) is covered by the Code of Conduct.

Bylaws

Code of Conduct

Examples included in the code of conduct are just that, this is not an exhaustive list of behaviours that may be considered in breach of the rules.

  1. Our Hackspace is inclusive; do not engage in homophobic, racist, transphobic, ableist, sexist, or otherwise exclusionary behaviour. Do not make exclusionary jokes, even "ironically".
  2. Don’t harass people. Physical contact or sexual attention without enthusiastic consent is harassment, or if taken to its extreme, abuse. Wearing revealing clothes or flirting are not necessarily consent. If you're asked to stop do so, if you're not sure the person is happy with what you are doing ask.
  3. Aggression and elitism are unwelcome - knowledge is not a competition.
  4. Although alcoholic drinks are allowed in the space, there is no expectation or pressure to drink alcohol or conversely not to drink alcohol. However, those who are obviously intoxicated will be asked to leave the space.
  5. We’d rather you ask about gender than assume, and if you get it wrong, apologise. Mistakes happen, however you should always use the person's preferred pronouns when addressing or discussing them.
  6. People's private lives are their own. Do not share details about others that they have not explicitly made public. This includes, but is not limited to, sexuality, gender, medical conditions, housing, relationship or financial status.
  7. Respect other peoples belongings and space.
    1. If possible ask before moving people's things.
    2. If a machine appears to be in use check if the person has finished before taking over.
    3. Don't spread your things too far and tidy up as you go along - others may be trying to work in the same area. If you're in the space on your own it's easy, and tempting, to spread out, be aware of others coming in and be prepared to stop working in order to create space for them.
    4. Follow the bylaws regarding storage and leaving projects out in the space.
    5. Don't mess around with other peoples' projects and possessions without their permission.
  8. Discussion of how to make our Hackspace more inclusive is welcome. Claims that this "has gone too far" aren’t.

If you have any concerns about someone's behaviour please let us know either in person, or by emailing board@hacman.org.uk. If you do not wish to email the whole board, individual board members can be contacted via <firstname>@hacman.org.uk

Consequences

Warnings

It is better to let someone know that their behaviour is liable to break the code of conduct prior to it actually doing so than issue them with a warning.

Any member can issue a warning to a person whose behaviour has broken the code of conduct. Warnings should be reported to board@hacman.org.uk as soon as practical. The report should include:

  • identifying information (name/nickname/description) of the person
  • the time and date the warning was issued
  • the behaviour that was in violation
  • the approximate time the behaviour occurred (if different to the warning)
  • the circumstances surrounding the incident
  • your identity
  • other people involved in the incident

Asking people to leave

Non-members

Any non-member who breaks the Code of Conduct can be asked to leave by any member, this includes non-members who are guests of members.

Members

If a board member is present they get to make a decision about whether one (or all) of the member(s) have to leave the space. If no board member is present any two or more members who have witnessed the incident(s) may ask the member (or members) to leave the space.

Do not put yourself in danger: if the situation requires it call the police.

Criminal behaviour will not be tolerated.

Restriction of access and termination of membership

Membership of the Hackspace may be restricted or terminated by the board for whatever reasons they deem sufficient. However, here are some general guidelines as to behaviour likely to cause restriction or termination of membership:

  • receiving three or more warnings from different sources within 6 months
  • continuing with behaviour after you have been asked to stop
  • a pattern of harassing behaviour, whether or not warnings have been issued
  • a single serious or obviously intentional offence such as taking compromising photographs (e.g. up their skirt), punching or groping someone

In the event of a serious accusation the board reserves the right to suspend the accused's access to the Hackspace while investigations are carried out.

Reporting inappropriate behaviour to the board

Any member can take a report from someone who has received harassment and pass that information to the board.

When taking a report from someone who has received harassment you should record faithfully what they say and reassure them that they are being taken seriously however, you should avoid making specific promises regarding the actions of the board.

Ask for information the reporter has not volunteered (such as time and place of incident(s)) but do not pressure them into giving details if they do not feel comfortable doing so. Even if the report lacks key details (such as the identity of the person engaging in the harassing behaviour) it should still be recorded and passed to the board. If the reporter desires it arrange for an escort by a trusted person, contact a friend or family member to come and support them and/or contact the local police. Do not pressure the reporter into taking any actions they do not wish to. Respect the reporters' privacy, do not discuss their report outside the reporting structure (don't break the code of conduct yourself).

The report should include (as far as practicable):

  • the identity of the perpetrator (name/nickname/description)
  • time and date of the incident
  • time and date the report was received (if different)
  • the identity of the victim
  • your identity
  • the behaviour - this can be couched in general terms if the report requires it
  • the circumstances surrounding the incident
  • other people involved in the incident

Public statements

As a general rule members of Manchester Hackspace should avoid making public statements about the behaviour of individual people in relation to the code of conduct.

The board will make as much detail about bans and current warnings as they feel appropriate available to all members. This will usually be via the wiki.

Summary

If you have been asked to stop behaving in a certain way, do so. It's fine to ask what it is you're doing that is upsetting the person if it is not clear, but you shouldn't ask why the person is upset by it, it's enough that they are.

If you have to take action to stop someone behaving in a way contrary to the Code of Conduct do so, if possible consult with other members and/or the board, however, if action is required take it and explain later.

Member's Storage Guidelines

  • Each member is entitled to either a cube or half a shelf of storage in the storage area. More can be used if there is space, but slots need to be kept available for new members. Where possible, you should use a box to stop your items falling out of your storage space and getting lost.
  • Your cube must be clearly labelled with your full name or a unique nickname.
  • If you use a box make sure to label both ends.

Large Projects

  • If you’re taking up a lot of space with a project you should email the mailing list to get consensus from membership for permission to store your items.
  • Oversized items need to be clearly labelled with a Do Not Hack sticker and your name / unique nickname, and an estimated finish date. If you are going to overshoot this finish date, let the mailing list know so we don't have a space full of abandoned projects.

Things you SHOULD NOT store in your members storage area

  • Dangerous / Flammable Chemicals.
  • Lithium batteries need to be in a safe charging-bag Lithium charging bags are cheap. http://bit.ly/1H9qTq9
  • Perishable food - this can be stored in the kitchen with label including your name/unique nickname and date left.
  • Perishables left in the kitchen can be disposed of without warning by anyone if they are unlabelled, judged to be past their sell by date, or appear abandoned.

Locking up the space

When leaving the space, particularly if you're the last one out, please look at the Lockup Procedure.