Reporting Guide

BioPAL Code of Conduct - Reporting Guide - Online Community

If you believe someone is violating the code of conduct we ask that you report it to BioPAL by emailing All reports will be kept confidential. In some cases we may determine that a public statement will need to be made. If that’s the case, the identities of all involved will remain confidential unless those individuals instruct us otherwise.

If you believe anyone is in physical danger, please notify appropriate law enforcement first. If you are unsure what law enforcement agency is appropriate, please include this in your report and we will attempt to notify them.

If you choose to email, please include the following information:

  • Your contact info (not required)
  • Names (real, nicknames, or pseudonyms) of any individuals involved. If there were other witnesses besides you, try to include them as well (not required)
  • When and where the incident occurred. Please be as specific as possible.
  • Your account of what occurred. If there is a publicly available record (e.g. a Slack chat or GitHub issue) please include a link
  • Any extra context you believe exists for the incident
  • If you believe this incident is ongoing
  • Any other information you believe we should have

Note: with anonymous reports, there are inherent limits in our ability to do follow-up or collect additional information. Hence we suggest that if you would like to remain anonymous, you at least create a throw-away email address without your real name.

What happens after you file a report?

You will receive an email from the BioPAL Code of Conduct Committee acknowledging receipt immediately. We promise to acknowledge receipt within 48 hours (and will aim for much quicker than that).

The committee will immediately communicate to review the incident and determine:

  • What happened
  • Whether this event constitutes a Code of Conduct violation
  • Who the individual(s) involved were
  • Whether this is an ongoing situation, or if there is a threat to anyone’s physical safety

If this is determined to be an ongoing incident or a threat to physical safety, the committee’s immediate priority will be to protect everyone involved. This means we may delay an “official” response until we believe that the situation has ended and that everyone is physically safe.

The Code of Conduct committee will then follow the standard procedure to arrive at and communicate a resolution.

Appealing the Code of Conduct Committee’s Response

To appeal a decision of the Code of Conduct Committee, contact the BioPAL Steering Council at with your appeal and they will review the case.

The Steering Council will gather all relevant information from the Committee and provide a resolution within two weeks. If more time is required, it should inform the appellant within that time frame.


Original text courtesy of the Speak Up!, Django and Jupyter Projects, modified by BioPAL. We are grateful to those projects for contributing these materials under open licensing terms for us to easily reuse.


All content on this page is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license.

Last modified April 23, 2021: [ENH] finalized navbar (c4067ca)