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Code of Conduct

for SSP Events and Activities

Updated August 1, 2022

The Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP) is a community-run organization that is committed to diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility. This includes providing a safe, welcoming, and productive environment that fosters open dialogue and the free expression of ideas, free of harassment, discrimination, and hostile conduct, at SSP meetings and events, whether held in-person or in virtual format. We have a shared responsibility for creating and maintaining that environment for the benefit of all. 

SSP is committed to supporting equitable opportunities and respectful treatment for all participants in our activities, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, physical or mental ability, disability, age, physical appearance, race, ethnicity, religion, political affiliation, nationality, or any other protected characteristics. We seek to be a welcoming community in which you can consider and debate a range of relevant viewpoints in a respectful and inclusive manner.

Scope of this policy: 

This policy applies to all participants, speakers, exhibitors, staff, contractors, volunteers, media, and guests (“participants”) during SSP events and activities, both online and in-person, including but not limited to meetings, conferences, off-site social events sponsored by SSP, webinars, seminars, podcasts, training courses, networking events; as well as participation in our committees and task forces, the mentorship/fellowship programs, publications, community discussions, and engagement with SSP on social media. 

This policy does not apply to the merits of disputes about business relationships involving members or to conduct that is not connected to SSP events or activities.

Expected Behavior

All participants are expected to treat others with respect and consideration, follow venue or virtual forum rules, and to alert staff to any violations of this Code of Conduct, dangerous situations, or any participant in distress. When you participate in SSP activities, we expect you to:

  • Treat others with respect and consideration;
  • Respect differences of opinion and be inclusive of a diverse range of experiences and perspectives;
  • Express differences in ideas and opinions productively, free of personal attacks;
  • Consider the impact of your communications and communication style; words can easily be interpreted as aggressive or negative, even if this is not what you intended;
  • Abide by all venue rules and policies;
  • Presume good will in the absence of evidence to the contrary, and alert others if their comments or conduct are unwelcome to you;
  • Respect others’ personal space, unless they invite the physical contact;
  • Be an ally—speak up, reach out to the affected individual, or notify staff when you see unacceptable behavior that affects another; and
  • Alert staff or security to any dangerous situations or if anyone is in distress. 

Unacceptable Behavior

SSP will not tolerate any form of harassment, discrimination, or abuse in connection with SSP events and activities. Prohibited conduct includes but is not limited to:

  • Speech, gestures, or behaviors that are known to be or should reasonably be expected to be unwelcome or are personally offensive, abusive, or derogatory;
  • Harmful or harassing verbal or written comments related to or motivated by another’s gender, sexual orientation, race, religion, national origin, gender identity, disability, or other protected characteristic;
  • Verbal or physical intimidation, threats, stalking, or bullying; 
  • Sustained or repeated disruption of events, including sustained interruption, yelling at, or threatening speakers;
  • Physical harassment, including unwelcome touching or groping, unwelcome attention, or inappropriate/unnecessary physical contact (including physical contact that exceeds the level invited by the other person);
  • Virtual or in-person stalking or unwelcome following;
  • Real or implied threat of physical harm;
  • Unprofessional use of nudity and/or sexual images in public spaces or in presentations;
  • Harassing or unwelcome photography or recording; 
  • Sharing without authorization from the presenters or commenters any virtual or live meeting content (such as by posting on social media) without the consent of the creators of the content, other than for the purposes of reporting a policy or legal violation to SSP or other authorities;
  • Retaliation against anyone for raising a complaint under this Code or participating in an investigation; and
  • Other conduct designed or expected to impair the positive experience of any other participant.

Please remember that behavior that is perceived to be acceptable to one person may not be acceptable to another. When in doubt about whether another person welcomes physical contact or when interacting with members who may be used to different cultural conventions, refrain from physical contact or ask first.

Anyone requested to cease unacceptable behavior or informed that their conduct or comments are unwelcome is expected to comply with such requests immediately. Targets or witnesses of unwelcome behavior are encouraged to communicate boundaries but are not under any obligation to attempt to stop the harassing behavior or to confront the alleged offender. The absence of an objection to unacceptable behavior in the moment will not be assumed to reflect implicit consent to such behavior.

As at any conference or other professional event, participants often combine professional activities with social interaction with other participants, staff, and other attendees. While SSP encourages such networking and strengthening of connections between participants, SSP reserves the right to remove or block any participant whose social attentions become unwelcome to another (whether in-person or online) and who persists in such attentions after their unwelcome nature has been communicated. SSP also reserves the right to remove or block any participant or attendee who appears inebriated and who engages in conduct that interferes with the ability of other attendees to participate in and enjoy the live or virtual event or activity. 

Participants must also cooperate with any SSP investigation into reports of a violation of this Code of Conduct by providing information requested by SSP that is relevant to SSP’s investigation.


If you believe you have been subjected to or have witnessed harassment or other unacceptable behavior, please contact the SSP Executive Director (violations@sspnet.org or 913-486-4185) or other SSP Staff (info@sspnet.org) or use a venue phone and ask for security if you feel unsafe. You are not expected to discuss the incident with the offending party, but you will be asked to fill out a report, ideally within one week of the incident, using the form provided below. All complaints for which sufficient information is provided will be treated seriously and addressed promptly. Confidentiality will be honored to the extent permitted as long as the rights of others are not compromised.

Submit Incident Report Form



SSP, in its discretion, may bar those who violate this Code from continued participation in or attendance at some or all SSP events and activities (live or virtual), without refund of any fees paid. SSP may also in appropriate circumstances bar violators of this Code from participation or attendance at future SSP-sponsored events and activities and may also notify the individual’s employer of SSP’s finding of a violation. SSP will report on the outcome of any investigation to individuals who have reported a violation of this Code of Conduct.

Procedures for Addressing Violations of the Code of Conduct for SSP Events and Activities

The SSP Procedures for Code of Conduct Violations describes SSP’s procedures for enforcing the Code and will be used for investigating complaints brought to SSP’s attention.