DRAFT Decentralized Web Interest Group Charter

The mission of the Decentralized Web Interest Group is to evolve recommendations to further the W3C’s One Web purpose by identifying, balancing and mitigating the unintended impacts of proposals early in the process, encouraging uniform change, and promoting OpenStand principles.

Join the Decentralized Web Interest Group.

This proposed charter is available on GitHub. Feel free to raise issues with [decentralized] in the title.

Start date [dd monthname yyyy] (date of the "Call for Participation", when the charter is approved)
End date [dd monthname yyyy]
Charter extension See Change History.
Chairs [chair name] (affiliation)
Team Contacts [team contact name] (0.1 FTE)
Meeting Schedule Teleconferences: topic-specific calls may be held or somthing else
Face-to-face: we will meet during the W3C's annual Technical Plenary week; additional face-to-face meetings may be scheduled by consent of the participants, usually no more than 3 per year.

Note: The W3C Process Document requires “The level of confidentiality of the group's proceedings and deliverables”; however, it does not mandate where this appears. Since all W3C Working Groups should be chartered as public, this notice has been moved from the essentials table to the communication section.


The web is the primary method of accessing information and services for over 4,000,000,000 people. The decentralized nature of the web has given individuals and organizations a platform to communicate and operate businesses around the world.

For a decentralized system to properly function, each system component must interact and function in a consistent, reliable, and stable fashion. Standards enable these decentralized components to interact and function as if they were an integrated, centralized system. Without the proper assessment, changes to web standards can thus have significant impacts on people, industries and societies that are challenging for any one individual or group to foresee.

Where changes to web standards impact stakeholder groups that are underrepresented within the W3C these unintended consequences are often missed or discovered late in the process.

To address this challenge, DWIG develops guidelines to assist specification authors in identifying, balancing and mitigating unintended consequences early in the specification development process. This input enables proposal authors to address those concerns that might otherwise be raised later as issues or objections, thus reducing the overall time from proposal to consensus.

DWIG may provide input on request to other W3C groups developing web standards to help identify early impacts on the broader web community beyond the focus of their specification.

DWIG provides short commentary on matters presented to the AC for consideration where there is a risk the matter will impact on the stability or decentralized nature of the web.

DWIG aims to include members with diverse skillsets and backgrounds to ensure its work benefits from disciplines such as business, economics, law, policy and product, whose broad experience are often underrepresented in other specific interest, incubation and working groups.

The web must be a stable and sustainable place for all to operate if the W3C are to continue to advance its mission.

Out of Scope

The following features are out of scope, and will not be addressed by this Interest group.

  • DWIG does not incubate standards or specifications work to avoid overlap with other incubation, interest and working groups.
  • DWIG does not define policy decisions related to what are “good” or “bad” changes, but instead provides guidance to proposal authors and reviewers to ensure they consider potential impacts to stability and decentralized nature of the web beyond the scope of their group.


DWIG maintains a Self-Review Questionnaire for concerns of Decentralization, Choice, Auditability, and Accountability that contribute to the decentralized, stable One Web.

DWIG will maintain an introductory document to help proposal authors better understand foreseeable impacts of their work by summarising and linking to external documents and bodies of work related to relevant topics.

DWIG may publish other documents consistent with the above scope.

Note: drafts of success criteria and the questionnaire have been produced within the Improving Web Advertising Business Group.

More detailed milestones and updated publication schedules are available on the group publication status page.


Put here a timeline view of all deliverables.

  • October 2020: First teleconference
  • October 2020: Draft of Self-review Questionnaire
  • November 2020: Finalize first draft of Self-review Questionnaire

Success Criteria


For all specifications, this Interest Group will seek horizontal review for accessibility, internationalization, performance, privacy, and security with the relevant Working and Interest Groups, and with the TAG. Invitation for review must be issued during each major standards-track document transition, including FPWD and at least 3 months before CR, and should be issued when major changes occur in a specification.

Issue: The paragraph above replaces line-item liaisons and dependencies with individual horizontal groups. There's been a suggestion to name and individually link the specific horizontal groups inline, instead of pointing to a page that lists them.

Issue: The requirement for an invitation to review after FPWD and before CR may seem a bit overly restrictive, but it only requires an invitation, not a review, a commitment to review, or even a response from the horizontal group. This compromise offers early notification without introducing a bottleneck.

Additional technical coordination with the following Groups will be made, per the W3C Process Document:

In addition to the above catch-all reference to horizontal review which includes accessibility review, please check with chairs and staff contacts of the Accessible Platform Architectures Working Group to determine if an additional liaison statement with more specific information about concrete review issues is needed in the list below.

W3C Groups

[other name] Working Group
[specific nature of liaison]

Note: Do not list horizontal groups here, only specific WGs relevant to your work.

External Organizations

[other name] Working Group
[specific nature of liaison]


Participation in DWIG is open to the public. Participants who do not represent a W3C Member should join as Invited Experts. Invited Experts in this group are not granted access to Member-only information.

Anyone may subscribe to the group's public mailing list and engage in discussion. Those who intend to contribute to deliverables will be asked to join the group.

The group encourages questions, comments and issues on its public mailing lists and document repositories, as described in Communication.

Participants in the group are required (by the W3C Process) to follow the W3C Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct.


Technical discussions for this Interest Group are conducted in public: the meeting minutes from teleconference and face-to-face meetings will be archived for public review, and technical discussions and issue tracking will be conducted in a manner that can be both read and written to by the general public. Working Drafts and Editor's Drafts of specifications will be developed on a public repository and may permit direct public contribution requests. The meetings themselves are not open to public participation, however.

Information about the group (including details about deliverables, issues, actions, status, participants, and meetings) will be available from the Decentralized Web Interest Group home page.

Most Decentralized Web Interest Group teleconferences will focus on discussion of particular specifications, and will be conducted on an as-needed basis.

This group primarily conducts its technical work on GitHub issues. The public is invited to review, discuss and contribute to this work.

The group may use a Member-confidential mailing list for administrative purposes and, at the discretion of the Chairs and members of the group, for member-only discussions in special cases when a participant requests such a discussion.

Decision Policy

This group will seek to make decisions through consensus and due process, per the W3C Process Document (section 3.3). Typically, an editor or other participant makes an initial proposal, which is then refined in discussion with members of the group and other reviewers, and consensus emerges with little formal voting being required.

However, if a decision is necessary for timely progress and consensus is not achieved after careful consideration of the range of views presented, the Chairs may call for a group vote and record a decision along with any objections.

To afford asynchronous decisions and organizational deliberation, any resolution (including publication decisions) taken in a face-to-face meeting or teleconference will be considered provisional. A call for consensus (CfC) will be issued for all resolutions (for example, via email and/or web-based survey), with a response period from one week to 10 working days, depending on the chair's evaluation of the group consensus on the issue. If no objections are raised on the mailing list by the end of the response period, the resolution will be considered to have consensus as a resolution of the Interest Group.

All decisions made by the group should be considered resolved unless and until new information becomes available or unless reopened at the discretion of the Chairs or the Director.

This charter is written in accordance with the W3C Process Document (Section 3.4, Votes) and includes no voting procedures beyond what the Process Document requires.

Patent Disclosures

The Interest Group provides an opportunity to share perspectives on the topic addressed by this charter. W3C reminds Interest Group participants of their obligation to comply with patent disclosure obligations as set out in Section 6 of the W3C Patent Policy. While the Interest Group does not produce Recommendation-track documents, when Interest Group participants review Recommendation-track specifications from Working Groups, the patent disclosure obligations do apply. For more information about disclosure obligations for this group, please see the W3C Patent Policy Implementation.


This Interest Group will use the W3C Document license for all its deliverables.

About this Charter

This charter has been created according to section 5.2 of the Process Document. In the event of a conflict between this document or the provisions of any charter and the W3C Process, the W3C Process shall take precedence.

Charter History

Note:Display this table and update it when appropriate. Requirements for charter extension history are documented in the Charter Guidebook (section 4).

The following table lists details of all changes from the initial charter, per the W3C Process Document (section 5.2.3):

Charter Period Start Date End Date Changes
Initial Charter [dd monthname yyyy] [dd monthname yyyy] none
Charter Extension [dd monthname yyyy] [dd monthname yyyy] none
Rechartered [dd monthname yyyy] [dd monthname yyyy]

[description of change to charter, with link to new deliverable item in charter] Note: use the class new for all new deliverables, for ease of recognition.