Flock 2017 - Diversity Session

One of the workshops I wouldn’t like to miss at Flock was the Diversity Team Hackfest, organized from Justin W Flory, Amita and Jona Azizaj. The Diversity sub-project was created to help foster diversity and inclusion in the Fedora community, and help underrepresented groups get involved in Fedora.

The 3rd day started with workshops, and the Diversity Session was the first one. The hackfest was mostly focused on three things. Improve the project’s event organization process and decide on what events the team wanted to focus on and organize for the next year, improve their on-boarding, budget spending and reporting. At first there was an overview of the events that the team organized at the past, and they also discussed their plans of what to organize on the upcoming months.

Some of the events they were planning to organize in the upcoming months are the Fedora Women Day in September, an event for the International day of Disabilities Awareness in December, and the LGBT event in May. Although there were many disagreements across the room whether or not we should focus much on an event about the International Day of Disabilities Awareness, and the team received negative feedback to participate in some way, saying that we are creating events “for people, and not with people”. I disagree with this statement, and I’m sure that we can make a good example of how inclusive we are. It’s important for people to understand that Diversity’s aim is to organize an event “with you” and not only “for you”.

Again, the importance of metrics was discussed to measure successful events. Considering that every event “technically” is unique due to its audience, geographical region and agenda, we need estimations before organizing such events. Those estimations can be the number of people we are expecting to come and what they can do themselves after the event. Answering some questions in advance we agreed that it is a good way to try and predict the outcome of the event and figure out some metrics.

The team also discussed some goals for the future. A Code of Conduct needs to be developed so that we can deal with inappropriate and bad behaviors, so that we can be crystal-clear of our goals, what we want to achieve, while on the other side mention what we don’t accept . Geographic diversity aspects was another issue we need to deal with.

Finally, the team members that organized the hackfest laid down the way to join the Fedora Diversity Team. People who would like to be part of the team, should try and introduce themselves on the mailing list. Joining the meetings on IRC is the next step for other people to know more about you and meet you. All the decisions that have to do with events and budget issues are made during the meeting. With the budget.next initiative, there is also a “diversity budget”, which means that members can request funding to participate and organize diversity-related events and activities.