Q1: What action will be taken as a result of my report?
A: This depends heavily on what you want to happen. The panel will keep the fact that you made a report, and the details of the report, entirely confidential unless you specifically give us permission to reach out to others.
Q2: How will reports be vetted?
A: If no action is requested, the report may not be immediately vetted (e.g. if it is a minor issue or the reporter is not yet ready to take action). If action is requested, the panel will request to speak to anyone involved, including any witnesses, and ask for supporting materials.
Q3: What kinds of outcomes can I request?
A: Reporters can request a wide variety of preferred outcomes. Some possibilities:
- Request to be put in touch with community members who can offer support
- Request mediation between the disputants (only an option if both parties actively agree to try mediation)
- Request that a panel member speak directly to the reported individual on their behalf
- Request advice around taking legal action
- Request that the reported person be banned from REACH (see Q7 for details on bans)
- Request a public report of findings (see Q6 for more info on public reports)
- Request to be put in touch with others who have reported similar behavior by the same person
- Request that the panel record that the behavior happened in case they decide to do a future investigation, while taking no other immediate action.
Note that these requests will be taken into account, but they are not guaranteed, e.g. if the panel is unable to substantiate the claims.
Q4: Is my issue too minor to report?
A: Anything that caused you harm, including fairly minor harm, is okay to report. It's really useful to hear about interactions that made people unhappy or uncomfortable, even if they don't clearly break rules or require action, because sometimes a pattern emerges when lots of people bring up things like that. Patterns of minor harms can be very informative predictors of future behavior.
Examples of issues that are okay to report:
- I asked this person not to touch my arm, but they did it again.
- This person used a slur to refer to me or someone else.
- This person responded out of proportion to something that happened (e.g. yelling/violent threats in response to minor issues).
- Failure to seek enthusiastic consent for intimate touch.
- Physical harm of any kind.
- Patterns of emotional manipulation.
Q5: This happened outside of REACH/the bay area/the country. Should I still report?
A: If the person in question is in the extended EA and rationalist community, yes, especially if the person is likely to visit the bay area, or is in a leadership role in their community elsewhere.
Q6: It seems like the panel's decisions can have serious consequences. How will the panel be held accountable?
A: The panel will document all decisions with the reasons behind those decisions. In many cases, these reasons will be confidential. The panel may share anonymized accounts with the consent of the reporters, and in the case of aggregated reports, the panel may share numbers. Public reports will be shown to the reported person before being posted, and they will have an opportunity to dispute any claims before the panel goes public with them.
Decisions will never be made purely on the basis of fully anonymous reports, though anonymous reports may initiate investigations. Note that this means it’s ok to make an anonymous report, but if you request specific actions, we may need identifying details to proceed. The panel will never share identifying details without the consent of the reporting party, even if that means we are unable to investigate.
Q7: What process is in place for determining suspensions and bans from REACH?
- A suspension may be put in place upon receiving one or more reports, depending on the severity and base rates for likelihood of repeat offense for the issue raised. This means that it is possible for someone to be temporarily not allowed at REACH without a full investigation having been completed.
- If an investigative committee is formed, it will make a report to Stardust at the conclusion of the investigation. Stardust makes the final decision about bans.
- REACH maintains a list of people who are currently not allowed at REACH. This list is available to REACH Stewards and to any community member who requests it.
- No details or reasons are given in the disallowed list.
- No differentiation is made between temporary and permanent bans on the list. Some people are not allowed for the duration of an investigation, while others may have been determined to pose too high of a risk to members of the community.
- In the case of a permanent ban, the banned person will receive an account of why they are being banned, which may be anonymized.
Q8: Who is on the panel?
- Kelsey Piper (email@example.com)
- Raymond Arnold (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Michael Blume (email@example.com)
- Hannah "Alicorn" Blume (firstname.lastname@example.org ; Alicorn#3154)
- Blake Jones (email@example.com)
- Cody Wild (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Tilia Bell (email@example.com, facebook.com/tilialindseysnider)
- Anisha Sensa (firstname.lastname@example.org, facebook.com/anisha.sensa)
- Paul Crowley (email@example.com)
- Tessa Alexanian (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Patrick LaVictoire (email@example.com)