Friends, it has been a strange and trying year so far, with a lot of changes and challenges.
With the online-ification of everything currently, we wanted to take a moment to share some important updates with y’all — to keep you informed and clarify some recent developments.
As always, the safety of our community — participants, creators, volunteers, and organizers — is the highest priority for us. In the past, our Code of Conduct has set guidelines and boundaries that allowed us to remove people who did not honor our values from our events.
Recently, we had to remove a fellow organizer who had overstepped the bounds of our Code of Conduct. We were alerted to allegations of past inappropriate behaviour by an anonymous report, and while in the process of investigating that claim we were presented with more examples of ongoing conduct we considered problematic.
Going forward, we are taking the following steps to help safeguard against future incidents:
- Stricter vetting processes for incoming organizers
- Clearer documentation outlining expectations and duties
- Updated Code of Conduct to include policies around online interactions
- Anonymous reporting tool
We are in the process of updating our Code of Conduct now — which will feature several new guidelines to help us all navigate the world of online events and “gatherings”. We are also working on the anonymous reporting website, where anyone can share concerns with us.
This updated Code of Conduct will go live very soon — keep a lookout, and let us know what you think.
We want to also take this moment to sincerely thank those who came forward with information, and helped us understand what had happened so we could take appropriate action. It’s never easy being the person who comes forward in situations like these – and we appreciate the effort and depth of character that took.
Thank you also to you, our community: without y’all, there would be no VR Austin, and it continues to be a great privilege to serve y’all and help build this amazing group of people.
And finally, we’d like to remind each and every one of you: we are here to help. If ever there is a situation in which you are uncomfortable, uneasy, or uncertain — we will hear you and we will do everything we can to resolve the issue.
Stay safe out there, y’all, and hope to see you in this and other realities soon.
–The VR Austin Organizer Team