[Noisebridge-discuss] It has come to my attention that...

Andrew Byrne andrew at pachakutech.com
Thu Jun 27 04:55:36 UTC 2013

Yan, I must do the latter to remain in good faith. So it goes.

Pace Rachel, by "this matter", I was referring to the question of me
leaving--save meetings where this will be discussed--without a
consensus-based procedure. I was pointedly not emailing discuss, but
regardless accept your well formed and timely opinion regarding the best
way forward. -AnB
On Jun 26, 2013 8:11 PM, "Yan Zhu" <yan at mit.edu> wrote:

> For clarity's sake, because I had trouble parsing your email: Dru, are you
> amending your offer at the meeting last night to abandon 2 of 4
> involvements in Noisebridge until "things are resolved" [1]? That is, are
> you volunteering to either stay completely out of Noisebridge or stay
> completely out of Noisebridge except for Tuesday meetings?
> To summarize last night's meeting in greater detail:
> * Dru volunteered to stay out of Noisebridge except for post-waste nexus
> meetings and general meetings (which I interpret to mean the Tuesday night
> NB meeting and the rebase meetings).
> * Nobody really had anything to say about that.
> * I talked to the assigned mediator in this situation (Carl) about whether
> we should have proposed that Dru leave NB entirely until the dispute
> against him is resolved, and we agreed that since nobody present at the
> meeting had a strong enough opinion to speak up, we would hold off on doing
> so for now.
> I also talked to Lillian and offered to be her advocate if she wanted to
> insist on kicking Dru out of Noisebridge, but her response was that she was
> tired of dealing with the situation and, in any case, felt safe because she
> is no longer around Noisebridge.
> However, it sounds like there are Noisebridge community members (Rachel,
> Alex, and maybe Liz?) who were not at the meeting who would like Dru to
> stay completely out of Noisebridge for a while.
> [1] I'm not clear on how we intend to reach a resolution, given that the
> original accuser (Lilian) no longer wants anything to do with the
> situation. I get the impression that in Lillian's absence, the persons most
> qualified to back up her claim that Dru's presence is detrimental to the
> Noisebridge community would be Liz (who has done research that hasn't been
> disclosed to the list) or maybe Dante. Then again, there might be consensus
> that Dru should be asked to leave anyway on the basis of the evidence so
> far combined with his responses to the accusations.
> -Yan
> (attempting to be neutral)
> On Wed, Jun 26, 2013 at 4:55 PM, Andrew Byrne <andrew at pachakutech.com>wrote:
>> Though uncertain of the phrase "have the run of the place", I volunteered
>> to abandon those projects per Rachel's suggestion at the meeting last night
>> and agree to her stronger impression, save Tuesday NB meetings; no one had
>> mentioned this matter to me before her, but the intrinsic confounds of a
>> strongly involved community member battling libel had already weighed on my
>> mind. Similarly, no-one has asked me to cease on this list for reasons
>> other than my own benefit until now. I would like to point out that I had
>> decided to take Rachel's advice as fatwa well before learning the standard
>> procedure, request this be handled in a timely matter, hope that my absence
>> from this discussion will not occasion public slagging, and bid you all
>> farewell 'till this is cleaned up.
>> Best
>> -AnB
>> On Jun 26, 2013 3:02 PM, "Alexandra Glowaski" <alex.glowaski at gmail.com>
>> wrote:
>>> It's standard procedure to ask people to stay away from the space until
>>> a potential social issue has been resolved, through mediation or other
>>> means.
>>> Quite aside from any potential disputes, bypassing this process reflects
>>> poorly on someone's ability to respect others' boundaries. This makes me
>>> uncomfortable. If you didn't know earlier, no foul in my book, but please
>>> take note.
>>> On Wed, Jun 26, 2013 at 2:37 PM, Andrew Byrne <andrew at pachakutech.com>wrote:
>>>> My apologies if I offended you through that missive; I forgot that we
>>>> work out our problems on the public email list and was merely asking for
>>>> your fatwa, which you gave, thanks. -dru
>>>>  On Jun 26, 2013 1:50 PM, "rachel lyra hospodar" <rachelyra at gmail.com>
>>>> wrote:
>>>>> I am forwarding dru's private response to me to this list, as I have
>>>>> no interest in engaging in private discussion with him. I will, as per
>>>>> usual, install some filters on my inbox so that any private emails he sends
>>>>> are shunted to the same folder as nb-discuss, allowing me to experience
>>>>> them as part of that more public space.
>>>>> To be perfectly clear, it is my opinion that accused sexual offenders,
>>>>> especially ones who are involved in a NB mediation process, should stay
>>>>> completely away from the space until matters are resolved.
>>>>> To be painfully, explicitly clear, I believe Dru should stay
>>>>> completely away from the space until matters are resolved.
>>>>> Anyone who would like to come forward with an account of dru's
>>>>> behavior but would like to remain anonymous, please feel free to contact me.
>>>>> R.
>>>>> On Jun 26, 2013 12:59 AM, "Andrew Byrne" <andrew at pachakutech.com>
>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>> After thinking on your comment, I am prepared to abandon two out of
>>>>>> the four appointments that I have at Noisebridge: The android developers
>>>>>> support group that I teach and the docent/redshirt shift, both on Saturday.
>>>>>> I think that my continued presence at the Nb rebase meeting, Tue at 6 and
>>>>>> the post waste nexus meeting, mon at 7 is within the spirit of your letter.
>>>>>> Correct?
>>>>>> -dru
>>>>>> On Jun 25, 2013 1:19 PM, "rachel lyra hospodar" <rachelyra at gmail.com>
>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>> After reading through Carl's email I would like to add that further
>>>>>>> witnesses/subjects of harassment who wish to remain anonymous may do so,
>>>>>>> while still coming forward and submitting testimony. In previous incidents,
>>>>>>> we've followed various procedures WRT this testimony (ie just anonymyzing,
>>>>>>> or anonymizing with only paper versions available to further protect, if
>>>>>>> requested).
>>>>>>> I would like to emphasize that this is possible here. History shows
>>>>>>> us that overwhelmingly often, the victims of sexual harrassment are
>>>>>>> subjected to social abuse and scorn when they come forward. (This is an
>>>>>>> example of rape culture)
>>>>>>> Additionally, I will add that our historical pattern has been to ask
>>>>>>> the accused offender to stay away until the matter is dealt with. I believe
>>>>>>> this is a good precedent, and I hope if anyone sees Dru in the space they
>>>>>>> post about it here. A good way for Dru to show good faith and demonstrate
>>>>>>> cooperativity here would be to, well, do so, by agreeing that accused
>>>>>>> sexual offenders, while they should be treated fairly, shouldn't have the
>>>>>>> run of the place.
>>>>>>> R.
>>>>>>>  On Jun 24, 2013 11:17 PM, "Liz Henry" <lizhenry at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>>>> Sounds reasonable Carl.  I think it is not so much "to decide Dru's
>>>>>>>> fate" but, to decide whether we want to hang out with him and basically
>>>>>>>> welcome him.
>>>>>>>> I think the idea of Dru remaining away from the space until he can
>>>>>>>> come to a meeting where  this is discussed is a good one.
>>>>>>>> Cheers
>>>>>>>> Liz
>>>>>>>> On Mon, Jun 24, 2013 at 7:25 PM, Carl <carl at icarp.info> wrote:
>>>>>>>>> Hi all,
>>>>>>>>> Lillian, and others involved...
>>>>>>>>> I apologize for not getting on this mediation sooner.  I've been
>>>>>>>>> ill this past week.  It would be helpful if others would also like to step
>>>>>>>>> up to help.  (so far Liz and Kevin have stepped up)
>>>>>>>>> Perhaps "mediation" isn't the correct term to use, how about "task
>>>>>>>>> force", "committee", or "investigation".  Anyhow, we use the term
>>>>>>>>> "mediation" because that is the process that Noisebridge has set up for
>>>>>>>>> issues like these.  We even have a wiki page set up for it:
>>>>>>>>> https://noisebridge.net/wiki/Mediation
>>>>>>>>> On that page it suggests that in order for a problem to brought up
>>>>>>>>> at a group meeting, someone must step forward to act as an "advocate" for
>>>>>>>>> the individual.  All parties involved should have advocates when an issue
>>>>>>>>> is brought up at a weekly meeting.
>>>>>>>>> The reason that nothing has been done so far, prior to Lillian's
>>>>>>>>> posting on the mailing list last week, is that:
>>>>>>>>> 1.  No one has been actively advocating on Lillian's behalf,
>>>>>>>>> although Liz did bring up the issue at a meeting.  I hope that someone will
>>>>>>>>> stand up to advocate on her behalf (if not Liz).
>>>>>>>>> 2.  There wasn't sufficient information presented for the
>>>>>>>>> membership to make any decision on banning.  Basically, all we knew was
>>>>>>>>> that some person, who wished to remain anonymous, was accusing Dru of
>>>>>>>>> sexual harassment, while no description of what occurred was presented, and
>>>>>>>>> no other witness accounts came forth.  It shouldn't be any surprise that
>>>>>>>>> this was insufficient for a motion to ban someone.
>>>>>>>>> Since Lillian came forth with her account of events, we have more
>>>>>>>>> detailed info to act upon.
>>>>>>>>> The recent revelation of emails between Dru and Dante may also
>>>>>>>>> help shed light on the case.
>>>>>>>>> Dru denies any wrongdoing.
>>>>>>>>> We can't just automatically ban Dru without some sort of due
>>>>>>>>> process, at least not permanently, as Lillian suggest.  What we can do is
>>>>>>>>> temporarily ban Dru while this investigation takes place.  This may be a
>>>>>>>>> course of action we can take to be brought up at the next meeting.
>>>>>>>>> The next steps then are as follows:
>>>>>>>>> - Fact finding.  Obtain any other relevant evidence and witness
>>>>>>>>> accounts.  I would highly encourage others to come forth to tell us what
>>>>>>>>> you know.  If you wish to remain anonymous, you may contact either myself
>>>>>>>>> or Liz, for the time being, and we will respect your wishes.
>>>>>>>>> - Since Noisebridge is taking upon itself to act as a "court" to
>>>>>>>>> decide Dru's fate, we should establish some procedures to handle this.
>>>>>>>>>  Each party must have an advocate.  Evidence is to be presented.  A jury
>>>>>>>>> weighs the evidence and makes a judgement.  Typically the jury is simply
>>>>>>>>> the membership present at a Tuesday night meeting.
>>>>>>>>> - If it is decided that Dru did wrong based on the evidence
>>>>>>>>> presented, or that it be decided that he is likely to cause harm in the
>>>>>>>>> future, then the jury would also consense on a course of action that Dru
>>>>>>>>> must follow.  This may be a permanent ban.  It may be something else, such
>>>>>>>>> as require him to take a course on "sexual harassment sensitivity", which
>>>>>>>>> some workplaces require -- I don't know.
>>>>>>>>> - This is assuming he is found guilty.  Some may not be convinced
>>>>>>>>> that he is.  That is why we need to collect evidence and go through this
>>>>>>>>> process.
>>>>>>>>> - Dru says that he is wrongly accused.  He at least deserves to
>>>>>>>>> present a defense, since it's his reputation on the line.
>>>>>>>>> Some evidence that I would like to find out more about:
>>>>>>>>> - Lillian says "others who still use the space have expressed to
>>>>>>>>> me that they don't feel safe around Andrew either." - We would like to hear
>>>>>>>>> this testimony.
>>>>>>>>> - I still haven't talked with Dante about his experience and the
>>>>>>>>> emails.
>>>>>>>>> - Any other witnesses.  We need you to come forward.
>>>>>>>>> I think Noisebridge is very much concerned about safety in our
>>>>>>>>> space, and we certainly would like to avoid scaring people off from coming
>>>>>>>>> here, as well as our reputation.  Issues like these are never pleasant to
>>>>>>>>> deal with, but we do because as in any community these issues do come up.
>>>>>>>>>  It's good that we're out in the open about it, even though it risks
>>>>>>>>> alienating people from visiting our space, I think it's overall better this
>>>>>>>>> way.  It's like open-source software vs. closed-source:  We risk showing
>>>>>>>>> the world all our bugs, but at least they're more likely to be fixed, vs.
>>>>>>>>> hiding our bugs and not fixing them.  I think the alternative would be a
>>>>>>>>> space that isn't as safe.
>>>>>>>>> cheers
>>>>>>>>> -Carl
>>>>>>>> --
>>>>>>>> .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .
>>>>>>>> Liz Henry
>>>>>>>> lhenry at mozilla.com
>>>>>>>> lizhenry at gmail.com
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> --
> Yan Zhu
> http://web.mit.edu/zyan/www/
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