Is there a policy for removing foundation members or what is considered acceptable behavior?

If so, where can I find it?

This is… not the least belligerent way to ask this question. :face_with_diagonal_mouth: But asking about recourse if leadership is behaving inappropriately deserves a good answer in any organization—it’s the sort of question for which you want to have that good answer well before the organization is in crisis.

You should determine whether you actually are talking about the board of the Foundation, which comprises the four people listed here, or a member of one of the community teams listed here.

I was unable to find documented policies about what to do if a member of a community team behaves inappropriately. Speaking for the Moderation Team, if you have a complaint about a moderator, you should direct it to another moderator—RFC 102 makes us solely responsible for our team composition and procedures. Other teams are likely to have their own policies, but similarly I expect that if you reach out to another member of the team in question, they can assist or at least point you in the right direction. (This is complicated by the fact that some individuals are members of multiple teams, and in the case of a general ‘inappropriate conduct’ complaint as opposed to ‘improper execution of their role’, resolving this simultaneously among all relevant teams may not be easy.) In principle, escalating otherwise irreconcilable issues to the Foundation board may also be an approved reporting path. And of course, the Moderation Team is responsible for ensuring that even other community team members maintain a welcoming environment in NixOS spaces, so if that relates to the unacceptable behavior we are your resource.

The Foundation board, per their Roles and Responsibilities document, serve as a conflict arbitration mechanism of last resort—the buck stops there. There is an open PR in the Foundation repository that, if merged, would create a standard for what is considered acceptable behavior for board members, though I note it doesn’t seem to include an explicit recourse if the standard is violated. As with the Moderation Team, the implicit model here might be that the Foundation board is intended to police itself.

I welcome corrections of any misconceptions I’m propagating here. This post is half ‘a researched and hopefully at least half-correct answer is better than silence’, and half ‘I’m less certain about this than I’d like to be, so here’s my best guess and I’ll either get confirmation or I’ll learn something’.


How the board is formed and dismissed it outlined in de Statuten van de Stichting. You can request de Statuten at de Kamer van Koophandel. The NixOS Foundation could also decide to publish de Statuten publicly. A lot of Stichtingen do this.

A Stichting is a legal entity in which only the board members are members of the legal entity. The usual setup that most Stichtingen have in their Statuten is:

  • Board members are rotated on a set schedule and the board members choose new board members
  • A board member can quit
  • A board member dies
  • The rest of the board fires him for an acceptable reason
  • A court order forces the member to be fired

There are some more exotic possibilities possible like “Board member must be an employee of company X,Y,Z” for example. Or “Board member must also be board member of a certain Vereniging” e.g. I’ve organized conferences for About · Stichting Nationaal Informatica Congres which is a Stichting where the board members formed from people of different computer science Verenigingen.

There are other legal entity shapes in The Netherlands where you can have other members but board members like a Vereniging. Where (community) members decide on who is on the board and have the power to appoint and fire board members through majority vote (but still confined to the law. you can’t just dissmiss someone because you don’t like them and there is a majority vote. just like you can’t fire someone for disagreeing with someone’s opinion). However in my experience these are hard to operate cross-border and practically only Dutch people could become a member. So I’m not sure if it’s that’s useful at all.


Thank you both for your detailed answers.

The Foundation repository now contains by-law documents: foundation/by-laws at b29911b7c3c13af4069b3de4c37293a2b27ed20b · NixOS/foundation · GitHub