Talking Drupal #217 - Diversity and Inclusion Group

July 1, 2019

In episode #217 we talk with the Diversity and Inclusion Group leadership.

Listen: 

00:00
 

Topics: 

  • Terms 101
  • What does the group do and how was it started?
  • Funding
  • Initiatives
  • Speaker Diversity Initiative
  • Drupal Association
  • Membership
  • Drupal Camps

Resources: 

Drupal Diversity & Inclusion website

Dries Note

Add slack channels

  • #diversity-inclusion: Main channel
  • #ddi-careers -- post jobs, look for jobs, discuss work and career issues in the Drupal-sphere! 
  • #ddi-contrib-team -- learn how to contribute back to the Drupal project! 
  • #ddi-session-help -- get feedback on sessions or proposals you have for camps and cons! 
  • #ddi-europe -- have conversations with the European Drupal community about D&I issues!
  • #ddi-media-club -- discuss books & other media related to d&i! 
  • #ddi-chat -- converse with DDI folks about *all kinds* of topics, from politics to why your view isn’t working! 

Drupal Camp Organizers slack: #community-diversity and #speaker-diversity

What we’ve learned from seven years of working to make RC 50% women, trans, and non-binary

Fundraising

Jill Binder site

Speaker Diversity Initiative Landing Page

Registration open for Speaker Diversity Workshop, set for September 21 and 28, 2019

Sponsors

Transcript: 

We value the accessibility of our podcast to all members of the Drupal community. Because of this we use otter.ai to provide transcripts of our shows. As with any transcript technology the transcripts may not be 100% accurate. If you find any glaring discrepancies please contact us at Show@talkingdrupal.com. Thank You


Stephen

This is talking Drupal, a weekly chat about web design and development. From a group of Guys with one thing in common. We love Drupal. This is Episode 217. Diversity and Inclusion. Afternoon, guys. Good afternoon. We have a good topic today.

 

John

That is true.

 

Stephen

Can anyone predict how long it's going to this episode is going to be

 

Nic

A longer ones.

 

John

I think it's going to be longer. There may there may be some editing needed, but yes, it's going to be well worth it. Okay.

 

Stephen

Well, since we've already recorded it, we know that all right and joining I'm Stephen Cross joining me as usual. is john piccozzi from Oomph.

 

John

Good afternoon Internet people.

 

Stephen

Yeah, john, anything new going on with you this week.

 

John

Well, by the time this airs, I will have given a talk at design for Drupal, which I'm doing on Friday. Last week, we did our Drupal nine webinar, which was awesome. So that's on our blog. So yeah, we're staying busy.

 

Stephen

Great. And Nic Laflin, from enlightened development, whats new with you, Nic.

 

Nic

Good afternoon, continue to work in the yard. Got A lot of the papers laid down get an update in the newsletter for you guys. And hopefully next week, I'll have the finished product.

 

Stephen

Yeah, great. So let's How about if we jump right into today's show? Let's do it. So Joining us today is the leadership team from the diversity and inclusion group at Drupal. Welcome. Thank you. Welcome, guys. So, so the voices that you're going to hear with us today we have Tara King, who is a Drupal developer, backend developer and customer serve at the customer service team at Pantheon. She's the leader of the group. Diversity team, the founder and initiative lead of the Drupal diversity and inclusion contribute team will be getting into that a little bit more later. We have Marc Drummond, who's a senior front end developer at Lullabot. He's a membership of this leadership team. He's also the lead for the speaker diversity initiative. And last but not least, we have a Alanna Burke she's currently looking for a full time position so John and Alanna you can hook up late at john, every episode is asking for people to submit resumes to Oomph so in addition to being on this leadership team alone, it also is a lead for speaker diversity initiative. So I think I've got that all right, correct me where I'm wrong.

 

Alanna

I'm the lead for the career initiative.

 

Stephen

Okay, the career initiative. Okay. There we go. And

 

Alanna

just a quick note, I'm actually looking to make a quick career switch and sort of like Dev, advocacy and dev evangelism, which is a change from being with a full time Drupal developer. So it's a little different for me, and has been kind of difficult to get into. So I just want to put that out there. Because it's easy to find a Drupal developer job, it is hard to find a dev advocacy job.

 

Stephen

So what exactly is a dev advocacy job? Describe that for us.

 

Alanna

So there's a there's a lot of different things that go into it. So there's, you know, there's and there's sort of different names for Dev, advocacy, Dev, evangelism, Dev relations, but a lot of it is sort of working with the community working with developers, you know, and on behalf of the company, to help developers generally to help them understand you know, what's going on with your service or product, working with your API, helping to develop content and, you know, tutorials and things like that, understand what's going on. But basically, I just want to do something where I'm working with the community. And that inspiration actually came out of the work that I'm doing with the diversity and inclusion team here. Like I realized that community work is where my strengths are and what I want to be doing. So nothing like this on the job interview. But

 

Stephen

no, it's great. Yeah, it's a great. It sounds like you found something that is much more interesting to you, and you're pursuing it. So good luck with that.

 

Alanna

Definitely. Thank you.

 

Stephen

Alright, so today, we're going to be talking about diversity and inclusion. So I thought to start here, we would take like a 101 approach, and define some of the key terms and concepts here. So the title of this organization has two key words in it, diversity and inclusion. So what is meant by diversity, and it's the inclusion of who is whom or who, I'm not sure what to use there

 

Tara

Sure, sure, I'll jump in hear great. So diversity and inclusion, there's some, some good quotes floating around out there. One is that diversity is being invited to the dance and inclusion is being asked to dance. So you know you might be diversity is about who's actually in the room, or in our case, in our community. We specifically are really looking at ways to support and encourage people who are from historically underrepresented groups in the Drupal project. So we want to get those numbers up, because it matters who's in the room, even if we're not included. So then the second half of that is, once we have people in the room who are representing a more diverse perspective, and an access set of experiences, you want to also make sure that those people know how to say contribute back to core or get jobs be at Drupal events, working on Drupal events, that kind of thing. So it's both who's in the room, and the ways that those people are then engaged with the community and the project.

 

Marc

And I'll add a couple of quick things here that another couple terms we use a lot, besides diversity, inclusion is equity and justice. And so like equity is our people, is everybody getting a chance to help organize the dance. And then justice is like making sure that like, nobody's been barred from coming to the dance, kind of, I don't know, maybe we're stretching this analogy too far. But right, you know, just making sure that everybody's getting a chance to equally participate and have a chance to, to be there and feel welcomed and belong and, and get to be a part of

 

Stephen

so. So using the word inclusion, I'm wondering if you can give me some examples of exclusion, what things that you're trying to solve some problems you're trying to solve with this.

 

Tara

I think what thing that open source is sort of famous for being exclusive is the issue queues, where a new person comes in and is immediately chastise shamed, driven away by negative behavior. I think that's one kind of classic example, in open source in general, I also see things like women developers being asked to take on project management roles, or kind of having a hard time getting jobs because people don't see them as developers certainly happened to me and many of my friends. And I think there are, there's a lot of examples, but those are a few. And there are a lot of groups that are, you know, classically not represented in, in tech, like women and people of color. So that's something that we're working to fix. I mean, I'm just looking at the people who are participating on this call, and it's six white people and four men. And that's, you know, that's something that we need to strive to fix to make sure that in every room we're not, you know, we're not excluding anyone that every voice is being heard. And every room and every gathering that, you know, is representing our community and our project.

 

Nic

So, when you're looking at Drupal specifically, you know, you mentioned kind of open source in general. And I know a lot of ways Drupal is kind of trying to lead the charge and a bit ahead of the curve in some areas for diversity and inclusion. What specifically, is kind of the biggest driving force for the Drupal community that you guys focus on right now. Is there a particular area that you're looking at for the next six months or year?

 

Tara

Mark that sounds like a good opportunity

 

Marc

Sure. So we have a number of initiatives that that we're working on. So. So I mean, the idea is, when you look around the Drupal community, you know, are we seeing are we seeing in in Drupal, the the sort of diversity and demographics that you see in the rest of the world? Or is our is it not matching up? Exactly. Right. We're not we're not quite there yet. I think, I think some gotten somewhat better, but we're not quite there yet. So so we're looking at like, what are some of the areas that specifically we can work on, where are some areas that we can help individuals out to, to help help things help other lives. And so a few of the different areas that we've identified are helping people out with their careers helping people get jobs, and to get better jobs and to feel fulfilled in their jobs. And other areas. area is speakers. I mean, that's a huge thing is when you go to a Drupal event, who do you see up at the podium, or who do you see at the table, because that that's who people see is, here's some of the respected voices in the community. And that's one way that people see, here's, I see that person, that person, I identify with that person, and I feel like I belong now a little bit, right. So and, and also, it just helps an individual out if they get to speak that helps people with their career possibilities. And that helps these kind of things kind of feed into each other. And then contribution is one of our other key key things because that's that's another huge area where people get to help move ahead for themselves. And it helps to help Drupal move ahead, is trying to help improve the diversity of the contributors that we have. We've we've got some big gaps there. When you look at when you look at statistics for contributions to Drupal core, we've got some really big gaps in terms of diversity of contributors, when you look at diversity of maintainer for Drupal. And, and so that's one area that we're trying to work on, Tara has done some amazing leadership there. And we have a team of people that are that are working to do contributions within the Drupal community. And Tara can talk more about that I don't want to spoil what Tara say about that. But, um, but so these are just kind of like, I like to think of it as a three legged stool, because these things all reinforce each other. When people are doing contributions. They become known as more experts in the community, and they, they're more able to give talks within the community and, and are able to get better jobs and people have better jobs are better able to give talks in the community and have more free time to be able to contribute. And when people give talks, yeah, people listen to them more when they contribute. And it helps them to get jobs, they all work together. And so we're trying to lift people up. That's our goals.

 

Stephen

So it sounds like you consider contribution being at the root of part of the problem, right?

 

Marc

It's one of the elements Yeah, it's it's it's an it's an area that's challenging and Dries. I was really happy to see Dries talk about that. In his keynote at Drupal con, he talked about one of the the big challenges is that there is not an equal distribution of time for people, you know, open source, not ever, you know, a lot of times it depends upon people having the time to work on that. And when people are doing it on their own with free time, not everybody has the same amount of free time. And and not everybody has the same amount of time and their job to do things. So, you know, people haven't watched that I really encouraged watching, watching that read the beginning that recent one was really great explanation of other other ideas that have been circulating in the community as S Dryden has a really great blog post about, about about this very topic about open source. Tara, do you remember the title of that blog post?

 

Tara

I don't, but I can find it for you.

 

Marc

Yeah, we'll have that in the show notes. Yeah. For listeners on the ethics of unpaid labor and the OSS community?

 

Nic

Oh, yeah, we'll definitely include that. I'm curious about how the group that started and about when it gets started, you know, was there a specific event that you know, precipitated the group or is it just kind of ground up something that people felt was needed?

 

Tara

There wasn't a specific event. But in I believe it was Drupal con New Orleans, Mickey Stevens, had a boss just to talk about diversity and inclusion. And that kind of rolled into the creation of this group. And it kind of, you know, it grew, it got bigger, we wound up having a, you know, it became sort of official, we got a leadership team. And it just, it went on from there. We we had various members, Nikki was the leader for a while, and then it was Fatima. And now it's, it's Tara. And while we have certainly responded to various events that have happened in the, in the course of Drupal since then, there wasn't any sort of specific event. But it was, it was definitely something that needed to happen. And Nikki is the kind of person that if they see something that that needs to happen, then they just handle it and create something and go for it. And so I think that's just, that's just how this happened. And now now there is a Drupal diversity and inclusion group. It's a, it's something that really needs to happen for a long time.

 

Stephen

Are you aware of any other open source projects that have this type of initiative involved with it?

 

Tara

I know the symphony community has a big one on big one, the one of the founders company, it's very active. I don't know how many people are involved. I would be surprised if WordPress doesn't have something. I know Mozilla has some diversity, I think paid staff and then also community initiatives. So there's there are definitely some out there. We're not alone. I think we have almost 700 people in our channel on slack. So I think we might be one of the biggest. So yeah, there's a building momentum. And we're starting to kind of cross over with some other open source projects. The Lukas Kahwe Smith from Symphony has been kind of working with us a bit. And now we're working with Joel Binder from WordPress. So we're building some connections there.

 

Nic

What's the name of the channel on top?

 

Tara

diversity-inclusion on the triple slack. Okay, thank you.

 

Marc

So we have a constellation of channels that we do, as well. But diversity dash inclusion is the first place to dip your toes in the water.

 

Alanna

Yes, I was just going to say our weekly meeting is every Thursday at noon, Eastern. If you want to find out more about what we do. It's open to everyone. It's just a text only meeting in slack. And it's asynchronous. If you can't join us just follow up with the threads. And we also will talk about all the other channels and you'll find out what else is going on. So if you're interested at all, that's a really great way to find out what we're doing.

 

John

And you said it's in slack. So are you just you're just doing a chat, basically, and answering questions.

 

Alanna

Yeah, we have a slightly structured agenda. And then we have we have some more sort of open chat. And we just try to engage people, you know, we tell people what's going on, we talked about upcoming events and PFPs and things like that. And we might have some more. Sometimes we have some more issues we want to talk about. It sort of depends on the weekend, who's running the meeting.

 

John

So let me ask you this, why why a text based slack like slack meeting, as opposed to like, goto meeting or a, you know, some other platform for like video conferencing,

 

Alanna

accessibility, ease of use ease of access to get the most people in there. And we really like the fact that can be asynchronous, you know, if someone can't join, they can come back a couple hours later, catch up on all the threads and keep engaging.

 

John

That's super smart.

 

Alanna

And I did we copy that from someone? I don't think

 

Tara

No, I don't think so. Okay. I think the ones that you'll see sometimes I think others like meetings that mirror our meeting format. And I think many of them were following us. I know mentoring, okay. because of us.

 

John

Guys, we give you guys a credit for that. Thanks. Sounds like a great idea.

 

Tara

It's been pretty helpful. I mean, especially topics like diversity and inclusion, which can be emotional. And also, the language is that we use is so important to the discussion that, especially for people who maybe aren't English language as a first language. I think it can help build those conversations over time. It gives people time to research words and things like that, that a real time meeting is harder to that kind of learning together.

 

Stephen

So a question related to that, and not that we want to spend the afternoon on slack. But how do you deal with the 10,000 message limit in a with a forum like this in an archive that content for for future reference?

 

Alanna

It's hard, we do have a script to export them. At the moment, the person who was doing that is a little backup. So I think we have been copying them and saving them. But they're not all getting out to our we used to export them to our issue to the issue for the meeting agenda to that all of that was saved. And we had specific meeting items that were off the record. Things like you know, we would have chickens like how are you doing what's going on? Or if there was particularly sensitive topic, we could take it off the record.

 

Tara

But I, Tara correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't believe that's been going on lately? No, it is definitely a backlog. But it was it's a it's pretty slick system when it works when we have the manpower for the human power for it. It's it gives credits for attending meetings on drupal.org. So kind of gets people some extra props in the community. But it's not ideal. We're still definitely working on that.

 

John

So dialing it back into the diversity and inclusion group. Is there a need for the group to or do the some of the initiatives require funding, you know, require some sort of financial commitment? If so, you know, what, what, if there are funds, what do they typically go to? And and where does that usually come from?

 

Marc

We want to you should say,

 

Tara

Yeah, go ahead, go.

 

Marc

So we just completed a really big fundraising drive, and we're super excited about it. So the one of our initiatives is the speaker diversity initiative. And so I'm, what our goal has been, is kind of mentioned earlier, we're it sorry, if you're seeing here, my dog in the background.

 

John

All right, we hear Nics dog all the time. All right.

 

Marc

So okay, so we, our goal has been to at Drupal con Nashville, which was about a year and a half ago, Jill Binder who was in the WordPress community came and gave a talk there. And Jill talked about her work in the WordPress community to lead a bunch of workshops to which worked with people from underrepresented and marginalized groups to help give them some extra training to get started with speaking. And she had some really impressive results in terms of helping to improve diversity at word camps around the world. And she showed some for tips and things like that. And since that time, she's gotten into doing this work as a consultant. And so we started talking to her early this year, about working with her. And then then we came up with this, this kind of wild idea to have a plan for raising some money so that we could work with her to hold an online workshop, to to do one of these workshops for the Drupal community. And, and so so we did that we Tara helped us to set up an amazing partnership for Pantheon, Pantheon, and Pantheon stepped up and they set up a $2,5500 matching Fund, which was amazing. And none of this would have been possible without Pantheon. So thank you Pantheon. And and Pantheon said we'll match up to $2,500 in donations, which is approximately what we needed to raise in funds. And, and then we need announced this at Drupal con. And we had some other sponsors sign on as well Lullabot and Canopy studios signed on right at the beginning as other sponsors. So huge thanks to Lullabot and Canopy to help sponsor this work. And then we had a number of other people, Tara help to announce this at Drupal con and at the welcome reception from Dries and Dries donated. I'll made a big donation. Another person there Drew Griffiths, give a big donation. And and the whole bunch of other people started stepping up and, and so we've been able to raise since then we just kind of made a last push this last couple weeks. And and so it and we just finished, we just finished this last week, it was really exciting. We had lots of party emojis already had emojis. And so we just finished the fundraising drive. And so so that is super exciting, because we are actually going to have these workshops, we're going to have an online workshop. It's over a pair of weekends, September 21 and September 28. This year, it's going to be online. And it's so it's we're, we're again holding this for people from underrepresented groups in marginalized groups to to get some help with getting started with speaking or if you've already done a talk or two, but still want to level up your skills is great for that, too. It's about overcoming imposter syndrome, developing and an idea for the talk. Getting and then developing a talk idea getting an outline, getting a pitch for the talk working on your bio, and even kind of getting some practice talking. And so each session is two and a half hours. And then there's some time in between during the week to do some brainstorming. And so the people doing the workshop, we're going to come out of there ready if they want to, to submit and get get their talk going at an event. And so we're really hoping that the get a lot of people signed, signed up for this. We're going to have the registration. If it's by the time this airs, it may be open already on our website, Drupaldiversity.com. But if not, it should be open very shortly. And it's a sliding scale donation for the workshop. I if an optional fee, but optional $5 or $10, if you want to help somebody else attend as well, or, you know, we don't want to have a barrier to people to attend to so

 

Stephen

this may sound like a dumb question, but how do you qualify for this training?

 

Marc

Um, well, we're not we're not we're not going inasking people. We're just asking, you know, people, people can figure that out for themselves. But what we're asking is, you know, and and we want to get a broad range of people that are joining the workshop. But we want we do want to target people who have historically had a harder time getting going, we want to we're the goal of this is to help increase diversity. And so overall, we work on a lot of different areas of diversity. Within the Drupal diversity inclusion group, we're helping, we're helping women, non binary people, trans people, lots of people within the LGBT community, we're helping working on racial diversity, we're helping to work against Islamophobia, we're working on a lot of different there's a lot of different areas of diversity that that people can think about, you know, where, you know, they, where they may fit in, right. So so people can think about, you know, how, you know, we we talked about disabilities, we talked about, you know, able ism, and there's a lot of different areas. So this year, do you want to Tara, Lana, want to fill in any gaps? I may have missed on that. It's a tricky.

 

Tara

Oh, I think, you know, yeah, it's really we're not here to, to gate keep on that one. If you feel like you bring a different perspective to the community of different set of life experiences to the community, then you probably appropriate, but I will say that the people that we're targeting in terms of, especially trying to get to the training are women and people of other underrepresented genders, non binary people, trans people, all kinds of folks like that, or targeting LGBT q people in general people of color, maybe, I would say people with English not as their first language. There's, there's so many groups I hate, I hesitate to name them all. But we're not going to kick anybody out. They come to the training. They're welcome to come to this.

 

Stephen

So this is your upcoming initiative. Do you have any others going on that you'd like to highlight or anything in the past that you found to be successful that you'd like to share?

 

Tara

I can talk a little bit about contributing. Its contribute team is sharper contribution team. This was something that we started almost a little over two years ago. Dries does the big state of Drupal or state of contribution post every year, right where he looks at the companies that are contributing that individuals are contributing. And two years ago, the result was, we think 7% of people who aren't men are contributing to Drupal. And that includes women, non binary folk, transphobic, and other or just you know, so that was pretty dismal. And the post didn't really propose a lot of ways to fix this. And since that's kind of our thing, we see a thing and let's go work on it. We started something called contrib team, which is to help change those numbers. And beyond just gender, gender is the only thing that at that point that we were tracking on drupal.org. So we don't have numbers for racial diversity, or any other metric, really. So we've been doing a lot of stuff to help people learn how to contribute, we've been working closely with the mentorship team to try to improve the core mentoring events that happened at cons and camps. We are working on something called the gender field module, which is based on open demographics project, which Nikki Stevens we mentioned earlier, was one who started that they are collecting demographic categories from the people who are represented by them. So basically, asking underrepresented people in open source to say, how would you identify your gender? How would you identify your racial background rather than having sort of a top down approach? So we're using those categories that they put together and open demographics, and building a Drupal module, and then now we're working with the folks behind drupal.org and the DA, to get that gender field implemented on drupal.org, to at least start to improve some of our diversity stats, because we just don't have very good metrics. So that's one thing we're doing.

 

Nic

So I remember not to derail this, but remember, when drupal.org first change from a binary gender, was that part of the diversity inclusion group? Or is that? Does that predate

 

Tara

that predates us by probably seven years?

 

Nic

I think because I remember was a long time ago, remember exactly what it was? Yeah.

 

Tara

That issue has come up a lot that I mean, that specific issue on drupal.org. That was done totally before, this was even a group. Although many people who are in the group were involved in those discussions. And I think at the time, it was a pretty solid choice. And I think as, as we get a better gender representation in Drupal, folks are starting to speak up and say, I actually find this, this particular fields kind of hurtful, which is why we're working to improve it and get a new field up there on drupal.org.

 

Alanna

However, the the recent addition of pronouns on drupal.org, that was spearheaded by a member of diversity. So while that wasn't an initiative of ours, I think that a lot of that came out of the spirit of the work that we do. And, you know, some of the things that we've been trying to gain momentum on. Yeah.

 

Stephen

So I noticed that you guys have your own issue queue.

 

Tara

We have two. Yeah.

 

Stephen

What is what can you find in that issue queue?

 

Tara

that issue queue has every week's agenda is posted in advance. So folks in the community, maybe both regular attendees, and people who aren't, can come in there and say, hey, I want to talk about XYZ, I would like to let this community know we have a secret CFP for our event coming up, or we want to talk about how to make an event more inclusive, that kind of thing. So the agenda is always posted every week in advance and is open to the community to edit and contribute subjects there. We also have a lot of event planning, that's probably one of the things that has been the most regular in our history is getting ready for Drupal con. So we have a Drupal con, Amsterdam ticket up that is managing a lot of planning for that event. blog posts are tracked here, there's something I'm forgetting.

 

Alanna

And sometimes people just put in miscellaneous issues of things, they like to see things that they think the community should do, or sometimes we get ideas, we just throw it all in there to make sure that we track it. And we don't forget about it.

 

Stephen

You mentioned yet a second queue.

 

Tara

So there's a separate queue for the team specifically, becausethey those issues tend to turn over a lot faster. And the queue was getting sort of overwhelming. So we have our kind of main high level group. And then if you want to talk to contribute team about how we're doing mentoring, or if you wanted to help us work on our website, we have a ton of issues from beginner to more advanced, to try to help give people tasks that they can then get credit for on drupal.org.

 

Stephen

So just a comment on your website. So as I was doing some research before this show, your website has a lot of great information in it. And like any question I was thinking of, I really could find the answer on this website somewhere. Yeah. So the contribution to the content on the website is really, really done well.

 

Marc

Well, a huge shout out to to Ruby, in our group who has helped to kind of lead the charge on the resource library on the on the website. Which is the big, I'm not sure if that's what you're referring to. But we've got a huge resource library on our website with like a ton of great things about lots of different topics. And that's kind of been Ruby's thing, and and then also a big shout out to Alex. I'm going to get I'm going to pronounce his name or last name wrong, Tara,

 

Tara

I don't know either.

 

Marc

Yeah, who's led the charge on like the website and just get it in that website. Like, there's been, there's been a number of people involved. But Alex is kind of like, spearheaded, make making sure that everything happens with that, and, and a shout out to everybody else who's contributed and helped as well. So

 

Nic

speaking of helping out, I'm curious how involved this group is with the Drupal Association. Is there any? Is there any involvement either way, either from the DA to you guys, you guys, the DA.

 

Alanna

So not officially affiliated with the DA, but we do maintain a friendly relationship with them. They have done some helpful things like we get a table at triple con, which we really appreciate, because we couldn't afford that otherwise, and we're very open about, you know, who gives us that table? We don't want anyone, you know, wondering or being suspicious about how we got that table, we're very clear about it. It's the DA. And we have, you know, we try to maintain the lines of communication between us and the DA. But we don't really have any sort of official relationship with them. We don't have any official influence on anything that they do, nor do they have any official influence on us. There have been times when they have come to us and asked for advice. And we have given it and there have been times when they have not. And we have wished that they had, you know, there's been times when they have done things. And there's been some big announcement and we have really wished that we had had some input into it because they know that this group exists. And, you know, no one shot us an email or asked for a call or anything.

 

Nic

So do you think it would be useful to have a representative on the board at the DA or some sort of official diversity inclusion liaison at the DA?

 

Alanna

So we've considered that and we have had someone run for the board and it didn't go well. And that person withdrew. And we have, you know, in the since then we've considered you know, is this worth the effort? You know, is this something that we want to do, and it's been an ongoing conversation. But we we do try to keep the lines of communication open, especially when it comes to Drupal camp, we are Drupal con, we have a much, much better I think relationship in terms of the things that we we influence in the things that we work on in terms of making sure it's a really great, inclusive conference. So I think that's really fantastic. But for the Drupal Association as a whole, I don't, I'm not sure that we, we have figured out how to properly maintain the lines of human location, while being a separate organization.

 

Marc

I do think it is really important to emphasize that we are like an independent, like community, like ground up group, right, like, like, I agree with everything Allana said like about how we communicate with da. But just like so there's no confusion, because there's a lot of work groups and things like that, that are kind of part of Drupal infrastructure. And we're not really one of those like, like, this was individuals that got started and built this up, like, with with work, and then we talked to people and yeah, like I said, sometimes they listen to us, and sometimes they don't.

 

Nic

I guess that was the root of my question, sir. Thanks for clarifying.

 

Tara

Yeah, I think we do have a really like our strength really is in our connect our ties the community and our unofficial lyst, that people can come to us and say, I have this concern without feeling like there's necessarily going to be some kind of ramifications from the DA or, you know, we really are sort of on the side of the individuals in the community. And it's awesome that the DA wants to talk to us about things. But I think it would be my long term vision would be that they'd have their own internal expertise and guidance, and that we would be able to advocate for our people, for the people in the community, if that makes sense.

 

Alanna

And we've also gotten the question of, you know, why aren't we official, and one of the reasons is because we need to maintain the ability to be critical, when it's necessary. So, you know, if if a DA does something that, you know, as a group we don't and can't agree with, we have to maintain the ability to be constructively critical of, of that, and, you know, not to be enemies or anything like that, we certainly appreciate the DA but we need to maintain that ability to, to, you know, give them the criticism that they need to move forward and be better as a group.

 

Marc

And we're glad to celebrate good things when those happen to.But, but yeah, having that balance, being able to do both, is good.

 

John

So if people listening to this podcast, are interested in joining the diversity and inclusion group, how would they go about doing that?

 

Alanna

Join that Slack channel. That's it. Now you're a member?

 

John

Fabulous. Okay. So, yeah, if I joined the Slack channel, I've been there I'm seeing seeing all the notes from the from the weekly meetings. Is that it it like, I'm a member of the group and I don't like is there something else that I need to do, or

 

Marc

we don't have a card or a decoder ring yet? Maybe that will that will come. We you did mention that 19 earlier, we are still raising funding for Drupal diversity inclusion as a whole. So maybe we can afford those decoder rings down the road. We do like have booths set at events like Drupal con. And so we do raise money for those expenses with that, and we have a we have a fundraising page for our website and Drupal diversity. com that you can go to and, and, and but in terms of membership and being involved, like you know, it's a process where there's not like a group membership, we've got like 600 700 people involved in our channel, something like that. There's a lot of people and, and not everybody is involved at every single meeting. But like we welcome new people to get involved. And, you know, listening is good. Listening is good, and like kind of figuring out how things work. And then, you know, contributing to discussions and and then finding out some some ways to help over time as people get familiar with, you know, what we're already doing, and things like that, and finding ways to pitch in.

 

John

So let's, let's touch on that a little bit. The barrier to entry is low, which I would expect expect from the diversity inclusion group, like, come on over, join us. You said, you know, pay attention and and contribute when you can, but how do you? How do you guys need help? What what types of people do you need to do? What types of things should I say?

 

Tara

Sure, we have a lot of different sort of skill sets that are needed all the time. project managers are helpful, especially in terms of the website, we have a lot of work there. We would love any kind of design help, both for the website, and then we do a lot of print materials around Drupal con. And I think that's an area that we're a bit lacking. We have even some basic tasks. Like if you have an article that you found that you think is really interesting about diversity and inclusion, you can go at it to our resource library, it takes less than 10 minutes. And the number of people that have the resource library is not necessarily that well publicized. But when people see it, it really is very impressive. There's a lot of helpful stuff. So that's you know, just while you're doing your daily internet thing, you know, you can help. Right now what we're doing is we're planning the speaker initiative. So again, if you want to be involved in marketing or promotions of that, or helping out their their space, we have contribute team is still working on gender field, and the DDI website and that kind of thing. And then we additionally have Drupal con Amsterdam planning happening. So especially if you're going to Amsterdam, and we are, this will be our second year going to European event. We were at triple Europe last year. So we're still kind of building connections in that community. I'd love to see some folks from there come help us plan a social event or meant sitting down at the the booth at the con, and you know, meeting new people. So those are the kinds of things right now that we're really looking for.

 

Alanna

We also have a couple of blog posts that we're having members work on and contribute to, one that we need to wrap out wrap up this week is Pride Month blog post, where we're highlighting a bunch of resources related to LGBT q issues. And the other that we're just getting started on is, at the beginning of every meeting, we ask everyone to do a land acknowledgement where they talk about the, you know, the indigenous people who settled on the land, you know, the, the original people who lived on the land that they live on now. And we realized that we weren't ever doing anything with those acknowledgments, other than just saying them every week. So we're doing a little project where we're asking our members to write a few paragraphs, and do some research about the land that they live on. And then we're going to compile all of that into a blog post. So we do have these sort of community blog posts that we're working on. So we really have all kinds of things. And we'll talk about all of these at every meeting. So the best way to get involved is just come to the meeting, the first thing we have everyone do is introduce themselves. So come Introduce yourself, listen, and if there's anything that sparks your interest, talk to us, you know, speak up in the meeting and ask if this is something you can contribute to.

 

Marc

Yet, the other thing I'll say is that, like, we love have people come and do things, that's awesome. But our group also does exist to provide community as well, for for people who may feel they don't necessarily have as many community and some other spaces. And so and that's, I think that's a really important function, what we do is just creating a space for people to talk about things. So like we have a DDI dash chat channel, where we talk about like a lot of the issues that are going on related to diversity and inclusion. And just kind of talking about some of the the issues that are going on in the Drupal world or the wider world and providing support for each other. There's the DDI dash careers channel that Alanna help to get started. And, you know, as part of the careers initiative, to talk about hiring and and careers, and we share jobs. And people talk about like, how can we work on hiring practices, like we just have a lot of really good discussions. And that's a really important part of the work we do too, is just like talking and connecting with each other. And like creating that sense of inclusion and feeling of belonging.

 

Stephen

So as we head to the end of the show here, we get some questions related to Drupal camps, because we have three of us here organize the New England Drupal camp. And one of the reasons that I reached out to you guys to be on the show as I was filling out a grant application for the Drupal Association a couple of months back. And one of the questions on there. And that grant application was what do you do to make sure your camp addresses diversity inclusion or some question like that? And I had trouble answering that question. I felt like that I'm sensitive to diversity inclusion, but I'm not sure that I actually know that my camp is doing the best it can. So I have a couple of questions around organizing a Drupal camp. And maybe you guys can either point us to a resource, or we could chat about it. Now. The thing that stands out to me most is this selection process for sessions and speakers. What would you consider the best practice for soliciting and selecting speaking proposals to make ii The most inclusive we can? and diverse? Yeah, the best way for us to do that?

 

Marc

So I don't think there's any magic. Okay, there's not any magic way, right? Like, I wish I could tell you, this is the one magic process that is going to get you a diverse selection, right. But we do have a lot of people that stopped by our channels to talk about this. And I will tell you that the number one thing that we we talked about is diversifying your organizing team is one of the very first things and your session selection team. And part of the reason why is because how do sessions get selected? You know, part of it is through people literally asking, Hey, could you submit a session? Right? It's through. And that's that's how jobs happen. And that's how session selection happens a lot. It's Who do you know, right. And if you have a more diverse team, you are likely to have a more diverse network of people that are getting asked to submit a session. And that makes a huge difference. And then just make it making it a priority in terms of keeping in keeping things in mind. There, I don't you know, I know that one thing that's been popular is blind submissions, there's been a lot of discussion about that. I don't know that that is a perfect thing. That fixes it. Because like sometimes people say, well, let's take let's take people's names and and then that'll fix it. But then if you put people list like what their qualifications are, you know, and so then you end up selecting speakers that have long list of qualifications for they've given lots of talks. Well, then you're just kind of pushing the, the bias down into like, people's past history in terms of other conferences, who have may have been had not as diverse, right? And had people with? Yeah, I don't know. It's not perfect. I don't think blind speakers. Speaking selection is perfect. So, um, you know, I think sending out invites to individuals, asking people, hey, I think you could give a great talk is really important. I think, like just sending out an invite to stay like a Twitter account, have some advocacy, you know, have an advocacy organization, I've seen people do that. I don't know, that makes as much difference as asking an individual that somebody knows and says, Hey, I think Thank you, I'd love to see your talk here at our event, you know, could you submit a talk? And so one thing I suggest to people is like, look at people who have gone to your past events or events in your region, or you know, that that you think would help make your event more diverse Look, look for people, and then say, Hey, we we think you would you, you'd help make our event better. Maybe you could come here to our event. And then I mean, the tricky part is that really like some parts of diversity is that the people who would help make your event more diverse, may not have access to as many resources to help attend your event. Right. So things like travel expenses are sometimes more difficult. So having funds for those sort of things, having funds for helping people out with costs, especially if they you know, back in help.

 

Stephen

So soon as looking at resources that you guys have in the website, and it took me to a GitHub page called event organizer packet. I was hoping to find some, you know, magical answer in there. So I looked in the second that was common exclusion pitfalls for speakers and keynotes when I clicked him, it was empty. So yeah, I knew this was a difficult question. And it's a challenge for us as organizers. And I was in now that you probably provide some information mark, which you get some good ideas there, I can see that there is no like, right way to do this, maybe other than awareness. And that was my answer on the grant proposal was, you know, we do the best we can were aware of it, and we try to pay attention to it. But I, I couldn't say that I had anything in place as, like guidelines for my organization. And I think that's what I'd like to eventually put together.

 

Marc

Yeah. But putting together a good safe event is important, too, right? Like, and that's important for diversity as a whole. So having a good conduct of code of conduct for your for your event, and then making sure that that's enforced. One person who again, it was spoke at Drupal con Nashville, Sage sharp, has had some good discussions about that making sure you have more than one contact person for your event for Code of Conduct issues in case one person has a conflict is is important Sage providing a training on Code of Conduct enforcement that we're encouraging event organizers to attend I think it's Sage's. Twitter account is underscore Sage sharp, I think that their and their website is otter dot technology. July 17, is the is the event. So that's that's a good one, right? work on making your event safer, and more welcoming and inclusive. Like, if you do that, and it's a great event that people feel like, Hey, this is a good place to be, they're going to want to be there.

 

Alanna

I just wanted to add a couple of things. Like you said, there's no magic bullet, it really is hard, you have to do a lot of work to get diverse speakers. And that's one of the things that we wind up telling people, you know, we get a lot of people who come into the channel, and they're like, we didn't get any diverse speaker submissions. And we're like, well, what did you do? They're like, Well, you know, we sent the CFP out to, you know, on Twitter, Well, okay, well did you did you send it to specific people. So that's the thing, if you just have to do a lot of work, you have to do a ton of outreach and be prepared that you are not going to get a lot back. So do you know 100 times as much outreach to underrepresented groups, as you want speakers? So Tara,as you and we found a and this isn't just a diversity issue for us. But we've had the concern in the past of reaching out to specific people to ask them to submit a proposal, because then we feel like we're sort of on the hook to select them. I think there's I think it gets difficult there too.

 

Marc

That is tricky. Yeah.

 

Tara

I think if I could take it into specifically some things that we can do together as a community. Because that is tricky, right? I've, I've personally gone out. I know that TC Drupal was looking to improve some gender diversity, and I have some strong Minneapolis connections. I personally emailed some friends, and it is tough to say, Hey, would you do all this work for someone who may or may not select you? Right? So it is a tough question. I think part of our speaker, our speaker diversity initiative is to try to get those numbers higher in terms of what's being submitted. So that hopefully it will sort of help every camp, right, because these are online workshops. So hopefully, every camp will have a few more submissions that they don't have to go knock on every door to get to. And then I think I have there's a blog post from the recure center, that we can put the the links that talks about how everything they've learned over seven years of working to make the recure center 50% women, non binary transphobic and 50% men, and I think there's a couple really good tips in there. And additionally, there's just sort of a perspective, which is that they've been trying working really, really hard at this for seven years. A lot of diversity work really doesn't scale because it's person to person involves a lot of trust and, and hard work of, like you said, making that request saying, hey, I'd love to have you submit a talk. And I also can't promise that you'll get accepted right? Like that's a tough thing to go do. So I encourage people to check this blog out. It's not specifically about session submission, but it's I think closely related topics, I think there's plenty to learn from it. And then additionally, I've a couple of us have joined the Drupal camp organizers slack. There are now channels for community diversity and speaker diversity, both would love to see more activity there. We've had various camp organizers come through either like we've described kind of, hey, how can I fix this problem at the last minute, but also more long term. And our team is small. I mean, it's we got a lot of people but in terms of the really active core, we were kind of we don't have a lot of extra energy. But if there's if there's a energy and consensus that the event organizer packet on GitHub is really the best place with from it from an event organizer perspective, then I think, you know, we, our community and the organizing communities could really come together and do something awesome there. I know, Kaleem Clarkson from Atlanta, Drupal camp Atlanta, has talked about a like a diverse speaker's bureau, kind of like Drupal speakers, who are from these underrepresented groups. Like there's a lot of ideas that are floating out there. And I guess I just want to take this opportunity to say we're listening, we love to collaborate, we don't have the event organizing experience. But we do have the D&I experience. So hopefully this out of this podcast, we can find some some stuff to help that out. Because I think it's worth solving.

 

Marc

And we have a lot of good discussion about this at the community summit as well this year. At Drupal con. There's a lot of good chats about that, too. I will say there's also a second part to our speaker diversity initiative, we're holding one online workshop, which we hope a lot of people attend and and that we hope that reaches a lot of people that we know that's not lead one workshop is not going to magically solve everything. In the Drupal community. What we are going to be doing is following up with a second part, which is a train the trainers workshop, which we are hoping that people from local organizing communities will attend, especially people from underrepresented communities in in those communities. So that each community can hold their own workshops at like their local meetups and things like that. So you can have a local a meetup at either at like the camp or, or just had like one of our monthly meetups to help encourage speakers locally. Because that's what we're, that's what the WordPress community did is. And that's what really helped them at all of their work camps is having these local events that really helped to get people going. People got started sometimes giving talks at at their monthly meetups, sometimes doing like lightning talks and things like that, and then working their way up doing regional camp talks. And then, you know, national convention talks and things like that. So, so building up like local talent and things is, I think another really important thing to do. So in a in a community space that's welcoming, that's going to be welcoming to people from underrepresented groups, which means like another thing that came over the community summit a lot was trying to find events, and that are not alcohol related, is another big thing, that a lot of our events in the Drupal sphere are alcohol related. And that is not always the most welcoming space for people, especially people that that may be more vulnerable to things like harassment, and stuff like that, which can happen more often in a space with a lot of alcohol. So finding some some spaces, to do events that are not bad, both at like, camps and at monthly meetups, I think can also help with participation.

 

Alanna

I was just gonna say one of the biggest things in making sure that your event is, you know, welcoming and inclusive to a diverse population is making sure that it's completely accessible. And that includes everything from you know, the things you might think about, like wheelchair access to, you know, are you serving alcohol? Are you serving other stuff? You know, is your food accessible to everyone with every kind of diet need? You know, what about your what's your bathroom situation? What's your seating situation? How's the signage, thinking about every single aspect of your conference, your event, and how it could affect every kind of person. And I'm sure you can find a million blog posts and Twitter threads on this weekend have 10 podcasts about it. But when I look at an events webpage, I want to know like, is this a place that I want to be before I even think about speaking there? So that's definitely a huge consideration for a lot of speakers.

 

Stephen

Well, you guys have shared a lot of great information today. And I can see that we're just scratching the surface.

 

Marc

I just also want to add one last thing, which is that I know that like we're listing all these things that it probably seems intimidating, right? Like, this is a lot right to take in. And I also don't want people think, hey, wow, these folks are party pooper is right, we're not we're like we're welcoming, warm people that like we have a good time at our events. And we're just trying to create spaces, where everybody gets a chance to feel welcome. And, and, and included and having a good time, which is important. And then the other thing is that like, when people hear some of these things I know that we we've heard this a lot is that people think, Hey, I'm not doing these things. So those folks over there at the Drupal diversity inclusion group, they must think I'm bad because I'm not doing these things. And, and we're not saying that, like, we're just trying to talk about ways to make things better. One of the really important things and doing this work is getting people to like, lay down their weapons, like like, like, take your armor off and lay down your weapons. And like, and because people get defensive, which is totally understandable. People feel like, I don't want to feel like I'm being a bad person. Because I'm not doing these, all these things. And we get that we understand that. It's a lot of work to move from where we are to where we want to be. It's a process. And and it's going to take time, and it's going to take effort, and people are going to make mistakes along the way. And, and so when we do we say, oops, I'm sorry, I'm going to work better. I'm going to do better next time and we keep moving forward.

 

Stephen

Mark, I think that was an excellent way to to wrap this up. Really. I think there's some great insight there. And, you know, you can always just do a little you don't have to do everything. Right. Yeah. Yeah. Excellent. Right.

 

Marc

So you can keep doing more to

 

Stephen

you can always go and I know you said there's no membership card, but as soon as we get off this recording, we're going to you're going to teach us the secret handshake. All right. Alright, so if anybody listeners want to reach out to the group as a whole or or any of you individually, what is the best way to do that? How about if we start with you, Tara?

 

Tara

individually, I am sparkling robots on both Twitter and data. Oh, you're welcome to contact me there. Think my DMs are going on Twitter. I'm also on Drupal slack as marketing robots and that I know my DMs are open there. So always open to any kind of questions, feedbacks, both personally and as a group. I'll let Atlanta go next.

 

Alanna

I am aburke66 on both Twitter and d dot O. And you can find me on slack. Alannaburke

 

Stephen

Okay, and mark.

 

Marc

I'm, I'm not consistent on Twitter. I am Mark Drummond. That's mark with a C marc drummond and on D Dotto. I am m Drummond. So feel free to connect with me there and I'm on slack and quiet. Glass like glad to connect with people.

 

Stephen

Great. Thank you so much for joining us.

 

Tara

Thank you for having us. Thank you,

 

Stephen

and we'll see you on slack.

 

Alanna

will be there.

 

Stephen

Alright guys, that was an interesting episode. I learned a lot.

 

Nic

It's good show. It's good to have them one.

 

Stephen

Yeah, it was great. So john piccozzi if anyone wants to find you online. Where would they do that?

 

John

They can find me on all the social networks at john piccozzi, they can find out about oomph and oomphinc.com

 

Stephen

and you Nic.

 

Nic

You can find me online pretty much everywhere at nicxvan.

 

Stephen

And I'm Stephen Cross on Twitter at Stephen Cross with a ph talk to you guys soon.

John

Have a good one. Transcribed by https://otter.ai