The Purpose Statement, is usually an introductory sentence or section. It should frame the use of a Code of Conduct within the community’s values and goals.

Below, is an example of a positive purpose statement:

A primary goal of this project is to be inclusive to the largest number of contributors, with the most varied and diverse backgrounds possible.[^1]

In the interest of fostering an open and welcoming environment, we as\ contributors and maintainers pledge to making participation in our project and our community a harassment-free experience for everyone[^2]


This statement should relate the policy to the general goals of the project itself, or the collaboration experience building that project.

Our goal with !!Con is to bring the NYC programming community together for a conference about the excitement, joy, and surprise of programming.

We value the participation of each member of the community and want all attendees to have an enjoyable and fulfilling experience.[^3]

Red Flags

  • Any statement that prioritises the comfort of existing contributors over the inclusion of people with less status or access.
  • Statements that put technical outcomes before participatory ones.
  • Statements derived from religious or other belief systems, even if positive in intention.

Here is a historical example from the Linux Kernal - Code of Conflict putting technical outcomes before participatory ones.[^4]

The Linux kernel development effort is a very personal process compared to “traditional” ways of developing software. Your code and ideas behind it will be carefully reviewed, often resulting in critique and criticism. The review will almost always require improvements to the code before it can be included in the kernel. Know that this happens because everyone involved wants to see the best possible solution for the overall success of Linux. This development process has been proven to create the most robust operating system kernel ever, and we do not want to do anything to cause the quality of submission and eventual result to ever decrease.[^4]

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