Speaker Rider

I want to make your experience with me as effortless and easy as possible. Please don’t let the following requests overwhelm you. I understand that not everyone can accommodate everything you’ll read. That being said, I want to make sure the audience has the best experience at your event. I am more than happy to discuss terms and adjust for the benefit of us all.

Travel expenses covered

  • Airfare and local transportation to the conference (unless lodging is within walking distance) 

Lodging expenses covered

  • U.S. conferences: For full length of conference, minus workshops/auxiliary events (unless I am partaking in those)
  • International conferences (outside of U.S.): One (1) full day of lodging before the conference + length of conference/workshops (if I’m participating) + evening that I speak.
  • Provide the option to purchase all travel and accommodation my behalf. 

Remote events


  • For live sessions, ensuring we have some sort of back-up plan and run-of-show prior with internet speed tests, tech check, etc.
  • Question and answer sessions need to be moderated by someone trained on your code of conduct with strict no harassment and trolling policies.

Chat spaces

  • Chat spaces must have conference moderators who are trained to follow your Code of Conduct (see section below).
  • The space should be accessible to WCAG AA standards. 

Ticket to full conference

Speaker shall receive a free registration to full conference (excluding any extra pre-conference workshops).

Conference logistics

Strictly-enforced Code of Conduct (CoC)

  • You must have a dedication to protecting the most marginalised and minoritised individuals.
  • Your CoC needs to explicitly call out what abuse is with clear examples (not limited to).
  • You must have clearly defined methods for dealing with conflicts when they arise with trained staff to address conflicts and be prepared to appropriately handle complaints. CoCs are only as good as their enforcement.
  • Both Write Speak Code and JSConfEU provide excellent CoCs that can serve as strong starting points.

Physically accessible space for all areas used

All areas that are part of the conference should be accessible. Period. That means:

  • Attendee seating
  • Stage
  • Social events tied to the conference within the venue and outside of the venue must be accessible especially if you use these social events to sell the networking aspects.
  • Accessibility of space should follow the criteria of the American Disabilities Act and/or equivalent local standards.

Live captioning

  • Ideally conducted by a live-captioning company, however, the use of auto-captioning ais acceptible.
  • Live captioning helps a vast array of disabled people, from Deaf and Hard of Hearing, to neurodivergent folks, to learning language speakers, and people at the intersection of all those things.


  • More than 1 non-man of colour
  • No all-white panels
  • For full speaker set, representation across race; gender identity, expression, and orientation; physical and mental disability. The larger your speaker list, the higher my expectations will be of equitable representation.
  • If I am on a panel, it must be moderated, ideally by a trained moderator. 

Commitment to attendee/speaker security/safety

Pronoun identification

  • Provide stickers/pins/printed on/writing space for nametags.
  • Pronouns should be optional for attendees to self-identify, but provided nonetheless.
  • They, she, and he are the bare minimum. Options should be combinable (some use both they and she).
  • Again, pronouns should be listed on website/printed materials, if provided (but always optional). 
  • Confirm with speakers before announcing them on stage, in particular.

Stage set up

  • Accessible stage (see above)
  • Wireless microphone option (handheld or microphone)
  • Mic utilised for all staged aspects of conference (Q&A from audience, workshop speakers, etc).
  • Confidence monitor viewable from stage
  • If it’s a tiny venue without the rigging, my laptop on a small, adjustable table near me should work.
  • Timer viewable from stage
  • If you are going to be strict about the timeline, then you need to provide this. You can include this with the confidence monitor/my laptop/a small kitchen timer.
  • You need to enforce this equitably. I so often see majority-/centred-folks allowed to go over (read: white cis het dudes who don’t care), but then everyone else has to shorten their timeslot to accommodate. Big. Fat. Nope. If you’re going to be strict, be strict with everyone.

Intellectual Property

Retain intellectual property and ownership of my content

  • I will allow video recordings/live streams so long as they are accessible (captioned) with written permission prior.
  • No censorship of my content, written, verbal, visual.
  • No branding of my content (I will not use branded slide templates, etc.).

Speaker option of presenting from conference computer or their own

It is super difficult/nerve-wracking to get your set up right to do dope code demos. Slide infrastructure, special fonts, and complex environments all contribute to unique presentations. Let people use and test their machines.

Reserved right for force majeure without consequence

  • If for any reason your conference, other speakers, sponsors, attendees, third-party vendors, etc demonstrate inappropriate behaviour/bigotry (determined by the code of conduct and also I reserve the right to determine beyond), I reserve the right to withdraw from the conference at any point without consequence.
  • Withdrawal may mean that I no longer want my identity associated with your conference (i.e., videos recorded to be deleted/not published, for example) and ask for commitment of removal as soon as possible in writing.
  • The reason for this is that I feel resistance only works if you take meaningful action. Sometimes that meaningful option is opting out of situations.
  • You are responsible for reimbursing me for any costs associated with this, not limited to accommodations and travel plan changes.
  • I have never had to exercise this right—and hope to never have to. I would imagine no conference organiser would want this either.
  • I have never had to exercise force majeure and it will be my last resort (sorry for getting that stuck in your head) if all else fails. In most situations, I feel confident we can collaborate to find an effective, less dire solution to the problem.

Final thoughts

If you are interested in having me speak, please provide the following:

  • Confirmation you have read this speaker rider with questions/any criteria you are unable to meet
  • Conference name, website, date of events, location
  • Budget for speaker honorarium
  • Tentative/confirmed speaker list
  • What you are interested in having me speak about

Thank you!