From the W3C…
The World Wide Web Consortium is set to pursue 501(c)(3) non-profit status. The launch as a new legal entity in January 2023 preserves the core mission of the Consortium to shepherd the web by developing open standards with contributions from W3C Members, staff, and the international community.
At the operational level, which is not changing, W3C Members are bound together for our technical work, united around the W3C’s mission to lead the web to its full potential by creating open standards that ensure that the web remains open, accessible, internationalized, secure, and interoperable for everyone around the globe.
We need a structure where we meet at a faster pace the demands of new web capabilities and address the urgent problems of the web. The W3C Team is small, bounded in size, and the Hosted model hinders rapid development and acquisition of skills in new fields.
We need to put governance at the center of the new organization to achieve clearer reporting, accountability, greater diversity and strategic direction, better global coordination. A Board of Directors will be elected with W3C Member majority. It will include seats that reflect the multi-stakeholder goals of the Web Consortium. We anticipate to continue joint work with today’s Hosts in a mutually beneficial partnership.
As important as all these points are, they only represent a change to the shell around W3C. The proven standards development process must and will be preserved.
W3C processes promote fairness, enable progress. Our standards work will still be accomplished in the open, under the W3C Process Document and royalty-free W3C Patent Policy, with input from the broader community. Decisions will still be taken by consensus. Technical direction and Recommendations will continue to require review by W3C Members – large and small. The Advisory Board will still guide the community-driven Process Document enhancement. The Technical Architecture Group will continue as the highest authority on technical matters.
Our transition to launch the legal entity includes concrete stages – adoption of Bylaws: filing for 501(c)(3) non-profit status; election and seating of a Board of Directors – all to transfer staff, Member contracts, and operations to the new structure.