July 11, 2018

GPUS Steering Committee/Forum Manager Minutes – Extra Call – 11 July 2018

The call recording is available at 712-451-0309, 926334#, reference 27.



a) Facilitator: David Gerry
b) Roll call – SC: Darryl! Moch, Jody Grage, Violet Zitola, FM: Frank Young, Sid Smith, Holly Hart, Charles Sherrouse
c) Agenda revision suggestions – none

2. Explanation of the purpose and intention of the call (3 min) – Darryl!

An information exchange to better understanding Forum Manager processes including decision making, time frame, etc.
and Steering Committee questions and concerns and to look to next steps to tighten up issues with the lists

3. Concerns from Forum Managers regarding fulfilling the role as per the rules etc (15 min) andDiscussion of Concerns expressed by the SC and need for details (15 min)

Holly – current set of FM working well, better than with only two or with three when one didn’t want to act role is not behavioral psychology or blaming or outing people behavior unlikely to stop if it doesn’t after two messages so three total warnings/advisory would be better than the current four if FM went rogue they would be called out by state/caucus when notified of delegate behavior

Sid – newest FM – many complaints were not being acted on, FMs now more proactive on complaints/non-complaints that warrant it black box reputation because of confidentiality – concerns include accountability for FMs increased transparency could create battles if people’s dignity and process not protected have talked about lowering threshold from four to three warnings/advisories before action

Darryl! – Questions including those from Chris:

Can FM act without complaint? – Yes and have done

What is confidentiality now? Complainers and those complained about are confidential

How are complainers dealt with? General reminders, individual reminders, and advisories – need agreement of 2 out of 3 FMs

What about sending detailed information including names to SC? – would break confidentiality and SC is particularly political and could increase bias, change election process to help select a balanced group

How about providing more detailed information including topic of concern? Nature of complaints included, could add dates

Do complaints stand alone by infraction or can they be grouped to warrant advisory? Varies with severity of issue and timing, several posts in one day count as one

Sid – no FM consensus about how to increase transparency, concern about having process politicized particularly in SC even if in Executive Session; FM pretty immune to the emotional environment; suggest only one advisory per post and two advisories for two posts in one day and not consider posts sent between actionable post and advisory

Charles – goal to encourage good behavior not to put on moderation

Darryl! – from Chris:

Why specified delegate still being allowed to post? actions were taken, delegate apologized and has moderated behavior

For very egregious behavior can posting be curtailed? three strikes over four would allow for quicker action, four or five days not too long a wait, frequent posts seem to increase bad behavior, feeling offended does not necessarily mean there is an offense, FM posts are not to be made public

Darryl! – Questions:

What measurements are used to determine complaint validity? Message content that violates a specific rule; motive not a factor; referee process and must state what rule was violated

What training do the FMs have and are FMs versed in conflict mediation, micro-aggression and anti-oppression training?

Sid – no formal training, Houston workshop, 30 years of teaching and moderating conversations

Holly – no formal mediation training beyond basics, also in consensus process and RRO that work to keep conflict from happening, some anti-oppression and micro-aggression training

Charles – background in psychology, workshop trainings in peacekeeping and diffusing conflict situations, workshops on anti-oppression

Frank – no formal training, 72 years of living successfully among a wide variety of racial backgrounds and viewpoints

How does delegate status effect weighing in as FMs?

Holly – have become more neutral in tone on lists, FM not very apt to be manipulative and FM need 2 of 3 to post

Sid – feels better being an alternate rather than a delegate because I can more easily avoid the conflict-of-interest issue, could recuse oneself if necessary

Frank – can’t shoot one’s mouth off, stay out of debate and at most ask questions

4. Walk through and analysis of current forum manager reports (7 min) – do online

5. Recommendations for next steps (10 min)

FMs encouraged to get thoughts posted, what could FM do to mitigate concerns of SC, etc.

Gini Lester sent suggestions in KS document which Darryl! will forward

Violet – make sure people not encouraged to abdicate responsibility for their own tone and content which is a collective responsibility Jody – work by and between SC and FMs should continue, need for further calls

End recording of call
TOTAL TIME: 1 hour 15 minutes
Jody Grage, Secretary