Lesbians Who Tech is dedicated to providing an empowering experience for everyone who participates in our community. Because we value the safety and security of our members and strive to be an inclusive community, we do not tolerate harassment of members or event participants. This Code of Conduct defines the gender-affirming, difference-bridging, discomfort-embracing, vibrant and challenging but harassment‐free experience we work to create, and the procedures for addressing issues, should they arise. We recognize that the bar is high, as we aim for our community members to be excellent to one another.

Sexual Orientation & Gender Identity

The experiences of LGBTQ women and gender nonconforming technologists are at the center of Lesbians Who Tech activities and events. Our goal is to elevate the visibility and leadership of our community in an industry where historically we have been underrepresented or invisible. Our community is multi-generational, multi-geographic, multi-racial, gender-diverse, politically dynamic, explicitly outward-directed, and global. The language we use (including the words “lesbian” and “queer”) reflect our strategic choice to be accessible to many different groups. We deliberately avoid acronyms and jargon.

Roles & Responsibilities of Allies

This community welcomes and challenges allies.We believe our our work is more effective when we collaborate with allies. You do not have to identify as LGBTQ, a women, or gender nonconforming to belong in this community. If you do identify as LGBTQ, a woman, or gender nonconforming, we ask that you reflect on your social position re: class, language, body, legal status, etc. and be an ally to people more marginalized than yourself.

Allyship is about actively reframing knowledge and actively changing power dynamics. Please engage these practices:

  1. Listen and learn, even when you feel confused or uncomfortable.
  2. Educate yourself instead of asking others to educate you.
  3. Don’t take credit for ideas originated by people on the front lines.
  4. Act like an ally when no one is watching.
  5. Acknowledge your privilege.
  6. Be resilient.
  7. Contribute resources: Time. Money. Visibility. Opportunity.
  8. Repeat.

Lesbians Who Tech Events

  1. Are a safe and respectful environment for all participants.
  2. Are a place where people are free to fully express their identities.
  3. Ask participants to presume that everyone’s ideas, skills, and contributions have value.
  4. Ask participants to learn new concepts from people who come from different contexts.
  5. Encourage participants to offer affirmative and augmenting “yes/and” responses.
  6. Encourage participants to actively solicit consent during interaction.
  7. Encourage members and participants to listen as much as we speak.
  8. Prioritize access for and input from those who have been excluded from leadership in the tech industry.

Demographic Data and Community Visibility

Lesbians Who Tech exists to promote the visibility and leadership of technologists in our community. Our work is out, proud, and public. We instigate leadership and visibility. Our closet door is open.

Internally, we use demographic data about our community to optimize the diversity of our programming and community, and to tag people as experts in certain identities. Externally, we share demographic data from career fairs and other recruiting events with talent partners. Publicly, we share demographic information from speaker bios, already-public profiles and blogs, recorded talks, and information shared for the purpose of public communication.

If you prefer not to disclose any of your identities, check the “Other” box and type the word “Undisclosed”.

Photography, Video, and Social Media

It is our mission to promote visibility and leadership of queer women and gender-nonconforming people (and our allies) in tech. We record photography and video and share these images online so we can achieve our purpose as an organization.

If you do not want to be photographed, please excuse yourself from posed group photos and avoid the situations our photographers are recording: stages,microphones, tech demos, and audience Q&A. If you do not want to be photographed at networking events, approach photographers directly to communicate that you do not want to be photographed or recorded. We aim to respect your privacy while also representing our community, promoting our people, and showcasing the work that we do.

How We Define Harassment 

Lesbians Who Tech is dedicated to providing a harassment-free experience for everyone regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, skill set, physical appearance, body size, race, age, nationality, citizenship status, colonial experience, or religion. We do not tolerate harassment of staff, presenters, and participants. We set a high bar for cross-cultural understanding and welcome everyone to learn from interpersonal accidents as we cultivate understanding of one another’s experiences.

Harassment includes but is not limited to: dismissive or demeaning verbal, written, or pictorial communication; exhibition of graphic sexual images; deliberate intimidation; stalking; following; “outing” someone (disclosing personal information) without their consent; harassing photography or recording; sustained disruption of talks or other events; inappropriate physical contact; persistent misgendering after a pronoun preference is communicated; gender binarism; biological essentialism; unwelcome sexual exhibition or attention; unwarranted exclusion; and patronizing language or action.

How We Respond to Harassment 

If a participant engages in harassing behavior, the event organizers may take any action they deem appropriate, including warning the offender or expulsion from Lesbians Who Tech events and network activities.

If you are being harassed, notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other concerns, please contact a Lesbians Who Tech organizer immediately: safe@lesbianswhotech.org or text (510) 379-9956. Organizers will be happy to help participants contact hotel/venue security or local law enforcement, provide escorts, or otherwise assist those experiencing harassment to feel safe for the duration of the event.

If you cannot reach an organizer and/or it is an emergency, please call 911 and/or remove yourself from the situation.

You can also contact Lesbians Who Tech about harassment at safe@lesbianswhotech.org and feel free to use the communication template below. Lesbians Who Tech staff acknowledge that we are not always in a position to evaluate a given situation due to the number of events and the fact that our team is not always present. However, we are hopeful that by providing these guidelines we are establishing a community that jointly adheres to these values and can provide an environment that is welcoming to all.


### Communication Template for Anti-Harassment Reporting ###

SUBJECT: Harassment alert at {{EVENT NAME}}

I am writing because of harassment at a Lesbians Who Tech event, {{NAME, PLACE, DATE OF EVENT}}.

You can reach me at {{CONTACT INFO}}. Thank you.

Email us at safe@lesbianswhotech.org to help us make our community stronger and this Code of Conduct even better.