Code of Conduct

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You should check out our shared values.

Communications rules

The following rules apply to all means of communication, online and in real life.

  • Do not use foul language, and absolutely NO insults will be tolerated.
  • Be careful with direct criticism:
    • Focus on the possible improvements and do not make the issue a personal one.
    • You should, when possible, criticize in private, and praise publicly; since most of our communications are public and people can be sensitive about that.
  • Ad hominem attacks are not accepted.
  • Do not flame or troll; it is not funny.
  • Do not undo someone's else contribution (wiki edits, code reverts, etc...) without asking first.
  • Send all communication in English.
    • The videolan@ mailing list, wiki translated pages, and forum-specific topics allow different languages, when clearly flagged.
  • Do not send spam.
  • Do not abuse administrative powers.
  • These Code of Conduct rules are not exhaustive; please use common sense, to infer other rules.

Mailing lists

When using the VideoLAN mailing lists, please follow also these simple rules:

  • The mailing lists exist to foster the development and use of VideoLAN. Unconstructive and off-topic messages, along with other abuse, are not welcome.
  • Make sure that you are using the proper list. In particular, don't send user-related questions to developer mailing lists.
  • If you want to explain to someone how to use a mailing list, please do it privately.
  • Do not quote messages that were sent to you by other people in private mail, unless agreed beforehand.
  • When replying to messages on the mailing list, do not send a carbon copy (CC) to the original poster unless they explicitly requested to be copied. When replying on a private mailing list, this does not apply as the recipient would not be able to read the reply otherwise.
  • If you send messages to lists to which you are not subscribed, always note that fact in the body of your message.

Mailing list Etiquette

  • Wrap your lines at 80 characters or less for ordinary discussion. Lines longer than 80 characters are acceptable for computer-generated output (e.g., ls -l).
  • Avoid top-posting in conversations.
  • Avoid HTML-only messages; have a plain text version instead.
  • Avoid sending large attachments; mails with attachments over 65kb will have to be moderated by administrators.
  • Do not send automated "out-of-office" or "vacation" messages.
  • Do not send "test" messages to determine whether your mail client is working. We have a test mailing list for that.
  • Do not send subscription or unsubscription requests to the list address itself; use the respective -request address instead.


When using the VideoLAN IRC channels, please follow these rules:

  • Do not quote messages that were sent to you by other people in private query, unless agreed beforehand.
  • If you want to explain to someone how to use IRC, do it privately.
  • Never send messages with colours (i.e. colour codes); use plain text instead.
  • Do not send "test" messages to determine whether your IRC client is working. We have a #test channel for that.


  • Do not bump a topic several times per day.
  • Do not cross-post your question across sub-forums.
  • Do not edit your past posts overly often.


  • Do not change priority or importance lightly.

Code repositories: Git / SVN / HG

  • Do NOT engage in revert wars.
  • Do NOT delete another developer's commit without approval by using push --force.
  • No insult in commits or commit messages.
  • Respect the correct commit log style.

Real life, Conferences, Meetings and Assemblies

  • Absolutely no violence will be tolerated,
  • "No" means "No",
  • You get one warning from the board first, and then you're out,
  • This also applies for the community day of VDD.

Disciplinary actions

Violations of the Code of Conduct will be punished.

See the following guidelines for escalations steps and sanctions.


  1. The first violation will always result in a simple warning, except if it is a grave or deliberate violation.
  2. The following violations will result in some of the disciplinary actions listed in the paragraphs below.
  3. For repetitive violations, the case may be escalated to the VideoLAN board and general assembly for further disciplinary actions.

In case of any disciplinary action, a VideoLAN board member will send an email to the offender and copy the association mailing list.

Disciplinary Actions

The following disciplinary actions may be enforced when a direct Code of Conduct violation is reported.

NB: Before applying any of those following disciplinary policies, the VideoLAN board will try to discuss the problem with the offender in order to solve it in a more peaceful way.
However, it is possible for the board to apply the penalty without discussions in severe Code of Conduct violations.

Mailing lists

  • The netiquette violations will get only a warning. Repeated netiquette violations will be escalated.
  • 24-hour ban from the mailing list in question.
  • Every third violation, the contributor will get a 7-day ban.
  • As one cannot develop without the mailing lists, a ban from a *-devel mailing list will result in a ban from commit access for one day on the related project.
  • For spam violations, the first ban can be longer or infinite.


  • Direct kick for minor violations, enforced by channels ops.
  • Other violations will get a 24-hour ban from the IRC channel.
  • Every third violation, the offender will have a 7-day ban.


  • Direct ban and account deletion for spam.
  • 24-hour ban from the forum website.
  • Every third violation, the offender will have a 1-month ban.


  • 24-hour ban from trac.
  • Removal of developer or admin rights.
  • Every third violation, the offender will be banned for 7 days.
  • Every third violation, a developer may lose commit access for 7 days.


  • 24-hour ban from the wiki.
  • Removal of developer or admin rights.
  • Every third violation, the offender will be banned for 7 days.

Code repositories

  • 24-hour ban from commit access.
  • Removal of gitosis admin rights.
  • Every third violation, the developer will lose commit access for 7 days.