[EP#][Social] Code of Conduct (2022)

Status Active
Discussion Thread Discuss
Vote [Pending]
Authors @estmcmxci, @spencecoin, @coltron.eth, @simona_pop


The purpose of the Code of Conduct is to create a robust working culture that encourages high standards for inclusivity, representation and respect. This is a high impact document that serves as one of the DAO’s foundations for a thriving and globally focused ecosystem.


This is a proposal to officiate the proposed Code of Conduct, drafted by a myriad of Stewards and Contributors.

The Code of Conduct guides participants of the ENS DAO towards a course of best action, as well as illustrating cultural practices that observe and respect individual agency and will to power.

The Code of Conduct also introduces the concept of Dynamic Proposals, which are subject to bi-annual revision by Council.


Code of Conduct (2022)

  1. Pledge

    1. We as members, contributors, and leaders of ENS DAO pledge to maintain a safe space that encourages high standards for inclusivity and representation.
    2. Accessibility is core to our ethos, and so all exchanges on our platform will be documented and stored in a public space for members of our Community to refer to.
    3. Interactions within ENS DAO or on behalf of ENS DAO should be in good faith, and good faith should be assumed of the other party as well. Intentionality and mindfulness in how we choose to engage with the Community is at the center of what it means to be a productive member.
    4. Participating in the Community means we welcome people from all walks of life; no matter their sexual orientation, race, creed, age, religion, culture, philosophy, ideology, gender, and so forth.
    5. We will do our best to accommodate both the needs of neurotypical and neurodiverse Community members; recognizing that each Community members’ voice is equally impactful and important to the development of our overall ecosystem.
  2. Rights and Responsibilities

    1. As members of a diverse Community, we must respect and observe that our values and beliefs may not align with one another.
    2. Nevertheless, we acknowledge and respect the sovereign rights of each member in our Community, but not at the risk or peril of another; infringing upon, alienating, or marginalizing any individual or group within the Community is not tolerated.
    3. Therefore, we act and interact in ways that contribute to an open, welcoming, diverse, inclusive, and healthy Community.
  3. Value Aligned Conduct

    1. To operate from a prosocial, human centered perspective; cultural practices encourage leadership that facilitates an open Community, welcomes new members and provides cultural-protocol related developments to the Community.
    2. To observe the values outlined within this Code of Conduct by proxy of best demonstration.
    3. To provide guidance and support regarding ENS services and the ENS DAO via technical documentation such as gitbooks, user guides and moderator support.
    4. To define expectations in the Onboarding process, promote communication within and amongst Working Groups, and explain the process of Contributor rewards and compensation.
    5. To praise members’ contribution to the Community and incentivize participation of existing and ongoing initiatives throughout the ENS DAO.
    6. To transparency, making information accessible, recording public meetings, and creating an environment that welcomes all.
    7. To encourage initiatives that are focused on using the ENS Protocol in an ethical manner and strive to only create positive impact.
  4. Creating Safe Spaces

    1. We hold ourselves to high standards of safety, resilience and integrity. This includes both online and real world interactions between the members of the ENS DAO regardless of their role or position. Social boundaries and rules of engagement must be respected and maintained at all times.
    2. We create an environment where everyone should feel safe to be themselves, interact with others, and express their opinions and contributions free from any malicious reaction.
    3. Our approach is to trust first; but any obvious instances of deceit, spamming, harassment, violent or profane language and other suspected or obvious fraudulent activity will be treated as a violation of this Code of Conduct.
  5. How We Work

    1. We encourage our members to be radically open source, non-hierarchical, creative, transparent in their intentions, and accountable for their actions.
    2. Ideas are meant to be shared. We default to using MIT and Creative Commons with attribution licensing on our work, but we accept all open source licenses.
    3. Everyone is encouraged to exercise their autonomy, creativity and full agency when acting in the Community. Every individual is wise in their own respect, and the diversity of perspectives enriches our Community.
    4. We value individuals’ efforts to act transparently and to proactively identify their incentives, especially if there are conflicts of interest when it comes down to proposing, funding, work progress and other important activities involving the ENS Community.
    5. Community members are held accountable for all their actions and commitments. Accountability brings trust, and trusting in each other is critical for our success.
  6. Best Practices

    1. Demonstrating empathy and kindness towards other people and their circumstances.
    2. Practicing mindful, prosocial communication.
    3. Being respectful of differing opinions, viewpoints, and experiences.
    4. Giving and gracefully accepting constructive feedback.
    5. Accepting responsibility and apologizing to those affected by our mistakes, and learning from the experience.
    6. Focusing on what is best not just for us as individuals, but for the overall Community.
    7. Giving praise generously where praise is due.
  7. Prohibited Behavior

    1. The use of sexualized language or imagery, and sexual attention or advances of any kind.
    2. The use of unnecessarily caustic language and attitudes in communications on and offline.
    3. Trolling, insulting or derogatory comments, and personal or political attacks.
    4. Public or private harassment, both on and offline.
    5. Publishing others’ private information, such as a physical or email address, without their explicit permission.
  8. Enforcement Responsibilities

    1. Stewards, Lead Coordinators and Contributors are responsible for clarifying and encouraging Best Practices and will take appropriate action in response to any behavior that are outside of the boundaries illustrated within this Code of Conduct.
    2. Community leaders have the right and responsibility to remove, edit, or reject comments, commits, code, wiki edits, issues, and other contributions that are not aligned to this Code of Conduct, and will communicate reasons for moderation decisions when appropriate.
    3. Every Community member has a responsibility to hold one another accountable to practice the standards and cultural values outlined herein.
  9. Conflict Management & Resolution

    1. Despite best efforts to create a safe space for Community members to thrive in, there remains a possibility for conflict that can endanger the health of our Community. In anticipation of this, our Community has developed a Conflict Resolution Protocol to prevent and manage conflict.
    2. Community members are responsible for maintaining a prosocial environment that fosters trust by demonstrating the values described within the Code of Conduct.
    3. Community members observe the boundaries outlined within this Code of Conduct in order to avoid miscommunication which can lead to apparent or intentional infringement of Community members’ respective sovereignty.
    4. Each member will act with respect to their roles and unless otherwise specified, those roles will define and guide the way in which members will engage with the Community as a whole.
    5. Members are encouraged to observe applicable laws within their localized jurisdiction. Minor infractions that bear no outstanding burden to themselves or their Community should not bar a member from participating in the DAO.
    6. Any considerable infraction will be noted and taken into consideration by Stewards when engaging with a perpetrator of The Law.
    7. It is the responsibility of each member of the Community to hold each other accountable for violations to the Code of Conduct. Stewards are responsible for fielding and reviewing each issue submitted to them via ENS DAO’s official Forum (via Direct Message or otherwise).
    8. Incidents and conflicts that require special attention are to be brought to the attention of the Stewards. The Stewards will meet to discuss the issue and work to resolve it through a process of consensus. If the issue cannot be resolved through consensus, it will then be brought to the attention of the Community as a whole.
    9. We highlight rehabilitative approaches rather than punitive measures; therefore, sanctions are a more appropriate measure for conflict resolution. Outright punishment (banning) tends to create resentment. Instead, Community leaders should learn from the experience and create a use case that can be used to help improve the overall Community experience.
    10. If you or someone you know feel it necessary to report a potential conflict, abuse, or safety concern, contact one of our Stewards directly via a Forum Message.
  10. Principles

    1. This space is a Public Good, treat it with as much respect as you would your own space.
    2. Common sense is not so common; asking the Community for help is encouraged.
    3. Pro social discussions help to grow the Community, think about how you can add to existing conversation.
    4. Open dialogue and constructive criticism is encouraged.
    5. Don’t dignify bad behavior with a response, simply flag it.
    6. Highlight productive conversations and focus on solution oriented approaches and communication.
    7. Keep discussion orderly. No spamming, double posting or divergent replies.
  11. Scope

    1. The Code of Conduct applies within all Community spaces, online and offline. It serves as a guideline for any individual who wishes to participate in and/or contribute to the ENS DAO on any level, whether as a developer or Community member or anything related.
    2. Members who are purposefully involved at the level of a Director or Steward of the ENS DAO should adhere to the Code of Conduct in order to set a best example for the rest of the Community. Becoming involved in the ENS DAO on that level means that you are representing ENS DAO and that any communications inside and outside of the DAO should be made with this same Code of Conduct in mind.
    3. Examples of representing our Community include using an official e-mail address, posting via an official social media account, or acting as an appointed representative at an online or offline event.
  12. Terms of Service

    1. Review our Terms of Service related to content, privacy, and laws. To use this service, you must agree to abide by our TOS.
    2. Cayman Islands’ procedural and substantive law shall apply to the interpretation and enforcement of these Terms of Service, including the available remedies, if any.

Community members are encouraged to review the ENS DAO’s Code of Conduct, which explicitly states our values to promote a prosocial working environment for the ENS DAO and greater Community.

Discussion regarding this Draft Proposal can be viewed in this thread. Please provide comments and feedback. Things to check for include spelling and references.


Very thoughtful and well drafted.

9.6. jumps out at me:

What is an example where this part of the Code would apply? I’m envisioning the DAO taking some action against a member for maybe having been convicted of a crime in their local jurisdiction, but I don’t think that is the intent.

1 Like

This is really great, and I really appreciate the huge amount of effort that went into it.


Thank you @ENSPunks.eth, Stewards and Contributors deliberated for the entirety of the first term. Your gratitude goes a long way!

This is a great question and it’s worth having more discussion. Should the DAO penalize its members for having been convicted of a crime? I think it depends on the infraction and should be considered on a case by case basis. For example, if a member was convicted of money laundering, they should probably not be allowed to become a Steward, but it should not bar them from being an active participant in the DAO (although we probably won’t trust them anymore anyway).

The reason I am suggesting the concept of Dynamic Proposals, or proposals that should be revised bi-annually, is for this exact reason. We don’t know what instances will occur that should induce the DAO to take punitive or rehabilitative measures against a member. As our DAO matures, we should take our learnings and revise the CoC as we see fit.

Thank you! It was really a Community effort, there are a ton of contributors that contributed to the creation of this document. I have a list of those people and I will be sure to give praise where praise is due, should this CoC be passed!

@KLeong I noticed your comment on the CoC in your nomination proposal. I invite you to review and share feedback on this proposed CoC. I plan to push this proposal to a vote on snapshot before the end of the month. Please note that several members of the ENS DAO have been diligently working on this proposal for the past 4 months, we have taken a very careful approach. Thus, Community members are generally aligned behind the existing proposal. That being said, I really would enjoy your feedback as I respect your background and believe you can bring an added insight to the existing proposal.


First - thanks @estmcmxci and the rest of the contributors to this HUGE EFFORT! I know how much work these types of docs can take, so really appreciate the effort and how this has come together! I have been reading/following the thread for the last several months, and in the current state, generally don’t have any significant changes (don’t worry, I would have weighed in earlier if I had some big objections to anything :slight_smile:. I think it would be a good idea for me to also circulate and discuss at our weekly Governance Team meeting over at she256 (on Monday) to make sure there would be no significant objections/requested changes from anyone there as well/ensure support once it goes to a vote.

Minor comments as follows:

I would love to explore further how ENS/she256 could work together in promoting this ideal and encouraging more women to participate in the ecosystem!

Proposed minor modification: “…philosophy, ideaology, gender, disability, economic status and other diverse backgrounds.”

When reading the Conflict Resolution Protocol, I have a concern re the final sentence in Protocol 2/going into Protocol 3 - “If a resolution has yet to be reached, the issue will then be brought up to the entire community via the forum to discuss the issue”…Then Protocol 3 goes on to detail what information is required to discuss the incident: lists the names of the members, etc., and indicates that the Community can offer their opinion. There may be specific situations where ‘complete openness/transparency’ may not be appropriate to the specific situation - whether for reasons to protect someone that was the subject of the harm/interaction, or alternatively due to legal or privacy reasons. as written, there is not a lot of flexibility for those types of situations.

Possible solution: It might be a good idea to include an additional sentence that allows a ‘carve out’ in the event that, say, a majority of the Stewards determine that the incident, or certain details of an incident (i.e., the names of one/both of the individuals, etc.) should be kept private. That leaves in a bit of flexibility if necessary.

Just to be clear - I believe we are talking about “Director” of ENS Foundation and Steward of ENS DAO? I understand that the Director positions are those held by Directors of the Foundation (are there any I am missing within the DAO?)

Would be interested to understand the discussion/reasoning behind the selection of Cayman Islands’ law. (Note - none of this is legal advice, just query :slight_smile: ) I understand ENS Foundation is in the Cayman Islands. Not true about the ENS DAO. The TOS link indicates that " These terms govern use of the Internet forum at http://db9688.discoursehosting.com. To use the forum, you must agree to these terms with True Names Limited, the company that runs the forum." I believe (correct me if I am wrong) that TNL is based in Singapore. I would be interested to see what TNL’s position is as to whether the ENS DAO mandating Cayman Islands’ law impacts their rights (or if they are OK with having to address any disputes in accordance with Cayman law) with respect to the TOS considering that, as drafted now, the TOS appears to be an agreement between TNS and the individual using the forum. And the current language in the “Disputes” section of the TOS is actually ‘silent’ on which jurisdiction/governing law is selected. Along that line of reasoning, I might also remove the word “our” before TOS and replace with “the”. I have not spent a ton of time digging into the specifics of the docs beyond this, so happy if there is additional info/ agreements i am not aware of that impact my thought process here.

Again - I can see from the evolution of the document that there has been a significant effort here! Such a great job!


Nice, please! I would love to participate as an active listener. I’ve joined the She256 Discord and added the event to my cal so I’ll be sure to join.

100%; I think the CoC is a good place to start. I tend to agree that the space is predominantly male-oriented, male-occupied. ENS is in a great position to set a precedent / example on encouraging women in Web3 to take leadership roles. This starts by creating safe spaces for discourse, both online and offline.


Agree! I admit that the Conflict Resolution Protocol (CRP) may be the weakest link in the proposed CoC. Specifically regarding privacy issues.

Perhaps we can consider making an amendment to the CoC’s CRP based on what you wrote above.

Yes, we should make the distinction clear. I’ll make sure to amend this part as well. A list of ENS Foundation Directors can be found here. I do believe that the scope of this Code of Conduct should also include ENS Foundation Directors, simply because it represents the ENS DAO in the real world.

I read the rest of your analyses of the proposed CoC’s selection of Cayman Islands’ law. Is the concern regarding that the use of this forum bounds individuals to terms with TNL, not ENS Foundation? This is a good catch and I was not aware of this. I believe it’s important that this forum is bound to terms according to its representative body, the ENS Foundation, since participation in this forum reflects the DAO, not TNL (AFAIK).

Then again, I am not an attorney, nor a representative of the ENS Foundation or TNL. I am just a passionate contributor to the DAO itself. Thanks again for all your feedback. I’ll come hangout on Monday to listen to the Governance Session!

1 Like

What does this mean?

1 Like

Cultural practices are shared perceptions of how people routinely behave in a culture. We want to establish a culture in which the shared perception is that people are encouraged to exercise individual agency and will to power. I can go into that more if you’d like but I’ll stop here for now as it’s pretty straight forward, at least in the authors’ opinion.

However, if you have any suggestions I encourage you to share it here.

Agreed. And, I believe, this sentiment is in alignment with the ability of the “Council” (as defined in the Articles of the Foundation as basically the ENS DAO tokenholders) to effectuate/mandate certain actions of the Foundation.

Yes, that is certainly one of the questions. I would say the questions I have follow this line of reasoning/questions:

  1. Who is the legal entity that controls the TOS? As written, it appears that TNL is the entity. However, that may be an old (unedited) minor change that needs to happen (i.e., during certain re-orgs when the Foundation and ENS were created, did TNL possibly transfer these rights to the Foundation, but the page simply just did not get updated? Or, does TNL actually have the legal rights/authorization over the TOS?)
  2. If the answer to 1 is TNL - then the question is - what authority does ENS DAO (or the Foundation) have to dictate any of the provisions? (This could be addressed, possibly in any agreement with TNL if there is a contractual/other relationship between TNL and ENS.
  3. If the answer to 1 is the Foundation, then (i) the TOS should be updated to reflect that, (ii) I have no issues with Caymans law being selected generally if that is what parties agree to (or if that is what is mandated in the TOS by the authorized party). That said - it would be the Foundation (and its lawyers) addressing the issues or disputes if anything came up - so, I would suggest that it would be prudent for them to weigh in to confirm that Cayman law is best suited as governing law over interpretation and procedures relating to to the TOS.
1 Like

This proposed CoC states that:


“These terms govern use of the Internet forum at http://db9688.discoursehosting.com. To use the forum, you must agree to these terms with True Names Limited, the company that runs the forum.” - Terms of Service - ENS DAO Governance Forum

This means that the ENS Foundation (ENS DAO) interprets and enforces the TOS, although use of this forum means entering into an agreement with TNL. To me, that seems to be a little confusing. Especially since the About - ENS DAO Governance Forum explicitly states that this space pertains to the ENS DAO Governance Forum… the ENS Foundation and TNL are two separate entities, right? I think it is important to make this distinction clear.

According to the TOS:

"The company last updated these terms on July 12, 2018, and may update these terms again. The company will post all updates to the forum.

I think it might be a good time to think about updating the TOS, especially to make that distinction between the TNL and the ENS Foundation clear.

I agree 100%; I think it’s best if @nick.eth or one of the other ENS Foundation Directors advise here. Since most of the communication within this forum is about ENS DAO Governance, not TNL, I think it would be wise to update the TOS to reflect that. If we are truly about progressive decentralization, the TOS of the ENS DAO Governance Forum should belong to the ENS Foundation, not TNL. I also believe that elected Meta-Governance Stewards should have a direct line of communication to the ENS Foundation, on at least a bi-weekly basis.

I’d just like to reiterate that my intention is to push the proposed Code of Conduct up for a vote on Snapshot before the beginning of Term 2. 2022-07-01T00:00:00Z

1 Like

Just a heads up @estmcmxci - due to some other agenda items and only 1 hour - we may not discuss in detail this week over at she256. But I will circulate the draft to our members and will put it up for discussion next week. Still happy to have you join though if interested!

1 Like

Yup - I will be on. Happy to be a fly on the wall.