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CWL Code of Conduct

The CWL Project is dedicated to providing a harassment-free experience for everyone. We do not tolerate harassment of participants in any form.

This code of conduct applies to all CWL Project spaces both online and off: the Google Group, the Gitter chat room, the Google Hangouts chats, and any other CWL spaces. Anyone who violates this code of conduct may be sanctioned or expelled from these spaces at the discretion of the CWL Leadership Team.

Some CWL Project spaces may have additional rules in place, which will be made clearly available to participants. Participants are responsible for knowing and abiding by these rules.

Harassment includes, but is not limited to:

  • Offensive comments related to gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, mental illness, neuro(a)typicality, physical appearance, body size, age, race, or religion.
  • Unwelcome comments regarding a person鈥檚 lifestyle choices and practices, including those related to food, health, parenting, drugs, and employment.
  • Deliberate misgendering or use of dead or rejected names.
  • Gratuitous or off-topic sexual images or behaviour in spaces where they鈥檙e not appropriate.
  • Physical contact and simulated physical contact (eg, textual descriptions like 鈥*hug*鈥 or 鈥*backrub*鈥) without consent or after a request to stop.
  • Threats of violence.
  • Incitement of violence towards any individual, including encouraging a person to commit suicide or to engage in self-harm.
  • Deliberate intimidation.
  • Stalking or following.
  • Harassing photography or recording, including logging online activity for harassment purposes.
  • Sustained disruption of discussion.
  • Unwelcome sexual attention.
  • Pattern of inappropriate social contact, such as requesting/assuming inappropriate levels of intimacy with others
  • Continued one-on-one communication after requests to cease.
  • Deliberate 鈥渙uting鈥 of any aspect of a person鈥檚 identity without their consent except as necessary to protect vulnerable people from intentional abuse.
  • Publication of non-harassing private communication.

The CWL Project prioritizes marginalized people鈥檚 safety over privileged people鈥檚 comfort. The CWL Leadeship Team will not act on complaints regarding:

  • 鈥楻everse鈥 -isms, including 鈥榬everse racism,鈥 鈥榬everse sexism,鈥 and 鈥榗isphobia鈥
  • Reasonable communication of boundaries, such as 鈥渓eave me alone,鈥 鈥済o away,鈥 or 鈥淚鈥檓 not discussing this with you.鈥
  • Communicating in a tone you don鈥檛 find congenial


If you are being harassed by a member of the CWL Project, notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other concerns, please contact the CWL Leadership Team at If person who is harassing you is on the team, they will recuse themselves from handling your incident. We will respond as promptly as we can.

This code of conduct applies to CWL Project spaces, but if you are being harassed by a member of CWL Project outside our spaces, we still want to know about it. We will take all good-faith reports of harassment by CWL Project members, especially the CWL Leadership Team, seriously. This includes harassment outside our spaces and harassment that took place at any point in time. The abuse team reserves the right to exclude people from the CWL Project based on their past behavior, including behavior outside CWL Project spaces and behavior towards people who are not in the CWL Project.

In order to protect volunteers from abuse and burnout, we reserve the right to reject any report we believe to have been made in bad faith. Reports intended to silence legitimate criticism may be deleted without response.

We will respect confidentiality requests for the purpose of protecting victims of abuse. At our discretion, we may publicly name a person about whom we鈥檝e received harassment complaints, or privately warn third parties about them, if we believe that doing so will increase the safety of CWL Project members or the general public. We will not name harassment victims without their affirmative consent.


Participants asked to stop any harassing behavior are expected to comply immediately.

If a participant engages in harassing behavior, the CWL Leadership Team may take any action they deem appropriate, up to and including expulsion from all CWL Project spaces and identification of the participant as a harasser to other CWL Project members or the general public.

This anti-harassment policy is based on the example policy from the Geek Feminism wiki, created by the Geek Feminism community.

CWL Leadership Team

As a stop gap measure until a more formal governance structure is adopted, the following individuals make up the leadership of the CWL Project: Peter Amstutz, John Chilton, Michael R. Crusoe, and Neboj拧a Tijani膰.

To report an issue with anyone on the team you can escalate to Ward Vandewege (Curii), Anton Nekrutenko (Galaxy) anton AT bx DOT psu DOT edu, C. Titus Brown (UC Davis), or Brandi Davis-Dusenbery (Seven Bridges Genomics)