Consent, privacy and confidentiality
Announcing consent, privacy and confidentiality protocols and any form of documentation, provides participants with a choice and also a reminder of the nature of the event. The golden rule is to communicate in advance and always ask for consent.
The considerations below matter regardless if the event is labeled as public or closed for a limited number of participants.
- To create safe and confidential spaces based on the idea that “what is said here, stays here”. They involve intimate, personal exchanges, with recording only during certain exercises, which will be announced to participants. Recording will be switched off as well as on upon request.
- Direct quotes and images. Use of direct quotes for social media accounts as well as sharing of images require always expressed consent and giving attribution.
- Screenshots also require expressed consent or have to be announced so that people can turn off their video if they do not want to go on record. Remember also to edit names from the image to comply with the requested confidentiality and privacy. More in general ask yourself, do you really need the screenshot? Are there other simple way to build memories of good moments?
- Chat and comments. Announce in advance if chat logs and comments will be saved. Communicate the protocol, such as anonymisation of content (name, pronoun, profile picture, etc.).
- Camera on/off. Mind that you may have an awkward moment if you ask people to stand for their stretching with their camera on. Some prefer to be in more comfortable apparel while sitting in front of their computer. We recommend that you always provide participants to choose to opt in and out from every activity that you propose. Remind your participants to turn off their cameras during breaks.
- Mic on/off. Remind people to turn off their microphones when not speaking and during breaks. Also, offer options for participants who can’t or do not want to speak over the mic e.g. noisy background, sore throat, feeling uncomfortable etc. to voice out in the chat area.
If any materials will be used, agree on and sign the protocol for consent, safety and attribution:
- Explicit consent:
- what [material] will be used for [public] purpose and where [link and description]
- do they give their consent to [your organisation]:
- no [if no, do they give consent for participants-only space use]
- Safety: is there a concern for their safety related to the content they shared
- if yes, are they in agreement that you redact names and specific location before publishing the story
- Attribution: how would they like the attribution of the story to look like:
- their name (and last name)
- their preferred name
- only initials
- their name and the name of their organization/collective
- only the name of their organization/collective