Culture > Code of Conduct

Published on Jul 1, 2020 by Ilona Brand

People at the 2nd ProgHacknight
People at the 2nd ProgHacknight

Code of Conduct

The Progressive HackNight is dedicated to making great ideas happen. We embrace progressive ideals, and want our space to be safe, productive, and inspiring. We have put together these rules to ensure that our events and structures hold true to our progressive values.

Social Rules 1

No feigning surprise

The first rule means you shouldn’t act surprised when people say they don’t know something. This applies to both technical things (“What?! I can’t believe you don’t know what the stack is!”) and non-technical things (“You don’t know who RMS is?!”). Similarly, this applies to acting surprised when someone does know something (“Oh wow! You’ve used React before?”).

No well-actually’s

A well-actually happens when someone says something that’s almost - but not entirely - correct, and you say, “well, actually…” and then give a minor correction. We want to promote an educational space and encourage people to feel comfortable learning from each other and teaching each other too. The behavior that we’re specifically addressing here is a correction that is used to assert knowledge or dominance in a situation.

No back-seat driving

If you overhear people working through a problem, you shouldn’t intermittently lob advice across the room. This can lead to the “too many cooks” problem, but more importantly, it can be rude and disruptive to half-participate in a conversation.

No subtle -isms

Our last social rule bans subtle racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, and other kinds of bias. Subtle -isms are small things that make others feel unwelcome, things that we all sometimes do by mistake.

Harassment Policy 2

Progressive HackNight is dedicated to providing a harassment-free experience for everyone, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, religion, or anything else. We take this very seriously, and if you feel like you have been harassed at a Progressive HackNight event, we (the organizers) want you to feel empowered to talk to us about it.

You can pull any of us aside, email us as a group at [email protected], email us individually at our emails listed below, or DM us in the Progressive HackNight slack if you feel uncomfortable or unsafe at the event. Here’s what we look like and our respective emails and slack names to reach us:


Ilona Brand, she/her [email protected] @ibrand


La Vesha Parker, she/her [email protected] @vesha


Rapi Castillo, he/him [email protected] @pikittakbo 347-481-3036


Annie Hirshman, she/her [email protected] @anniehirshman 603-731-7923


Sonya Reynolds, she/her/hers [email protected] @sonyabear 215-264-5968

Tino Bedi, He/him [email protected] @tino 212-960-3975

Julian Rad, he/him [email protected] @julianrad 917.854.8368

Alex Burgos, he/him

1 The social rules are excerpts from the original social rules from the Recurse Center, where they help nurture a productive learning environment. The Recurse Center wrote an awesome blog post explaining their social rules, and we will be sure to announce these rules at the start of every HackNight.

2 The harassment policy is built from excerpts from the !!Con code of conduct. !!Con is a conference celebrating the joy excitement and surprise of computing.

About the author

Ilona Brand

Ilona Brand

Ilona is a member of the ProgHacknight Steering Committee