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Slack rules

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Getting started

  • Complete your profile. A complete profile gives everyone a better chance of knowing who you are. This includes your first name, last name (optionally followed by your location and personal in parenthesis), profile picture (photos are preferred, but not required), phone number, and a summary of what you do and what teams you’re on.
  • Enable two-factor authentication (2FA). You can either do this through SMS or an authentication tool. Slack provides detailed instructions for both options. If you need to reset 2FA, Slack admins will re-verify your identity.
  • Customize your profile by adding your location and personal pronouns to the Last Name field so they appear alongside your messages. This is a great way to be remote-friendly and gender inclusive. Otherwise, your colleagues need to view your profile to see that information. Remember to add other helpful info in your profile while you’re in there.


Slack is required for all TTS staff. Some things you’ll want to remember, especially if you’re new to Slack:

Channel names

  • Channels that begin with admin- include administrators for various tools. #admins-slack, for example, is used to request invites to Slack (see above), expunge a particularly offensive/off-topic message (see above), change the name of an existing channel, and so on.
  • Channels that end with -partner include partners from other agencies.
  • Channels that end with -public may include members of the public.

Channels focused on TTS practices have their own conventions:

  • Channels that begin with wg- are for working groups.
  • Channels that begin with g- are for guilds.
  • Channels that begin with c- are for 18F communities.

Feel free to join any of these practice-focused groups even if you are not actively part of the group and are just interested.

When to use @channel and @here

In general, the larger a channel is, the more careful you should be about using broadcast notifications.

  • Type @channel [message] to send a notification to everyone in the channel with your message. Use sparingly and only if everyone in the channel needs to see and read your message. When in doubt, ask first. Never use @channel in a large channel unless you really know what you’re doing.
  • Type @here [message] to send your message to everyone in the channel with Slack currently open at a desktop computer. Don’t use this as a softer version of an @channel because there will be no notification for anyone who wasn’t at their computer. This is more useful if you have an urgent need and need attention from everyone who is online right now. However, using @here in a large channel will still disrupt many people.

Some channels may have particular guidance for getting help, which you can usually check in the channel status. Regardless, if you don’t have an urgent need or a message that everyone needs to see, try posting your message without a broadcast notification.


  • Keep the conversation visible within #alumni and don’t DM staff. For direct communication, use methods available to the general public, such as email.
  • If you would like documents or materials, you can either use publicly available methods to request that we publish them publicly, or you can file a FOIA request for GSA to release them. Don’t request materials that aren’t already public to be sent to you — even if they were non-sensitive or documents that you personally authored while you were here.
  • Don’t share job postings. This is especially true for your own employer, but applies to postings generally. We don’t want our #alumni channel to be providing advantages to any particular company due to someone’s access to it. You can use email or other publicly accessible methods to share job postings.


Slack is FedRAMP Authorized.