Sunday, December 5, 2010

LCA just got even better

LCA2011 venue - the QUT Z-Block complex
In January 2011 free & open source rockets - like, you know, space rockets - free & open source software, and more free and open source good will than you can shake a stick at all come together for linux.conf.au, in QUT's flash facilities (photo left) at Brisbane's beautiful Gardens Point.

And there's another reason why LCA is going to be even better this year.

LCA has long been the most vibrant and enjoyable grass roots technical conference on this side of the equator, but it has - like many other technical conferences - had its share of incidents that pretty sorely detract from that inclusive and productive community spirit.

Yuk. Harassment.

Its not pretty, and we'd all rather we didn't hear about it. But its been pooping on our doorstep for sometime now.

And its time to clean house.

Our broom is the new LCA2011 anti-harassment policy.

It went live on the LCA 2011 site last night and already we're getting a lot of great buzz.

Several of us on the LCA2011 organizing committee, led by yours truly, have been working really hard with the community both in Australia and abroad to pull together this policy - something that can stand against the awful trend; that can help to make LCA more welcoming to a whole range of people who maybe have been put off technical conferences because of that atmosphere.

We hope this will clear the air. It will show that we stand behind the fine print in our T&C which also gives a mention to harassment.

We're also hoping it will provide the courage for other future technical conferences to do their own policy as well.

A lot of the success of our effort has come from standing on the shoulders of the Conference Anti-Harassment Project, championed by Val Aurora and friends. And it has been helped by discussions and input from a whole range of people - you know who you are: thank you!

Got questions? Got thoughts?

Please, leave them here - but can I encourage an approach of first please - most graciously - read the Conference Anti-Harassment resources. If the issue is already answered there its probably just going to attract a "Read the Fine Manual" sort of response. :-)

Thanks for reading, and I look forward to seeing you all at Linux.conf.au 2011.

Why are you still here - go and register!