Has any project produced a "Discussion Guidelines" doc?

I can’t help but think that like codes of conduct, some type of civil discussion guide would go a long way in establishing a community culture in how issues are discussed. It’s NOT a code of conduct of course, that’s for much more serious issues around safety.

I’m thinking of something a bit less intense, a gentlepersons guide to good discussion etiquette online. Here are a few tentative examples below. The wording for these examples is likely atrocious but I wanted to give a ‘first prototype’ so you’d understand what I’m after. I HOPE there is an existing one we can use. These examples are just my first prototype:

  • Everyone is trying
    Everyone is here as a volunteer. Treat each other with respect and assume good intentions.

  • Early ideas don’t immediately work
    Early Design ideas are often overly broad and not meant to be implemented immediately. Something may not work for obvious technical reasons but try to see the goal of the design and offer alternative ways to go about it.

  • Explore don’t shutdown (the “yes and…” rule of improv)
    If you’d don’t agree with an idea, Instead of shutting down it, ask about it’s motivation. Try to understand what it is attempting to do.

  • You’re not the user
    Most UX issues are trying to reach a broad range of users. While an issue it may not appeal to you, it likely appeals to others.


I think the people at Discourse (the software we use for this forum) have already approached this in their blog. I would like to do some research on this and come back to you. I do think it is something relevant but I think there has to be something quite nice already developed elsewhere.

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Exactly. However, the fact there isn’t a clear and immediate instance for us to point to implies that it’s not really used that much. I was motivated by this article about building culture within a group. I feel there is a lot more we can do to make UX discussions happen in a productive way inside GIT repos.