Jens Oliver Meiert

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5 Cool Ways to Support the W3C

Post from January 21, 2009 (↻ June 10, 2021), filed under .

This and many other posts are also available as a pretty, well-behaved ebook: On Web Development.

I recently got a mail by someone interested in supporting the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) similar to how I do it. While replying I noticed that the information I was about to share might not be obvious to everyone, but still important, as the W3C fulfills a crucial role and can always use contributors.

1. Become a W3C Supporter

If you like to pass on money to the W3C, that’s the way to go. Either become a supporter or donate something for the validators. I’ve been doing both.

2. Contribute on W3C Mailing Lists

Most of the W3C lists are public, and you won’t only have the pleasure to learn on a fairly high level (although there are impolite, off-topic, or useless mails, too, just like on other lists) but also find a great place to share your expertise. Pick and subscribe to lists of your choice. (We may meet on a few of them.)

3. Become a W3C Translator

You don’t have to go for official or authorized translations in order to become a W3C translator and make important technical documentation accessible to non-English speakers. Translating W3C documents is great pro bono work and it would be great if more people volunteered and subscribed to the W3C translators list. I personally love this kind of contribution and will most likely continue providing translations until the end of time.

4. Become a Working Group Member

Maybe becoming a W3C WG member is a bit too easy, as you only have to get a public account and apply (yes) for becoming an Invited Expert. For the HTML Working Group, that albeit intentionally simple process has resulted in quite a few “pseudo-standardistas,” however it’s the way to contribute to W3C activities. Fair enough, I, I’ve been a more or less contributing member of the WCAG and HTML Working Groups.

5. Implement W3C Specifications

I’m out of the game now but maybe that’s something for you: Since the W3C process may require implementations to make a specification a Proposed Recommendation or official Recommendation, these are important to accelerate adoption and use on the Web. Hence it’s another option you have to avoid worrying but instead to be proactive, for the W3C and the Web.

❧ There are probably more ways to contribute but I hope both my readers as well as friends at the W3C can help fill those gaps.

About Me

Jens Oliver Meiert, on September 30, 2021.

I’m Jens, and I’m an engineering lead—currently manager for Developer Experience at LivePerson—and author. I’ve worked as a technical lead for Google, I’m close to W3C and WHATWG, and I write and review books for O’Reilly. I love trying things, sometimes including philosophy, art, and adventure. Here on I share some of my views and experiences.

If you have a question or suggestion about what I write, please leave a comment (if available) or a message. Thank you!

Comments (Closed)

  1. On January 27, 2009, 12:49 CET, Alan Gresley said:

    I think acknowledgment would help. I have been acknowledged by Anne K. for my assistance with the CSS selector API. The leader for Firefox development Rob G. was talking about me behind my back on a W3C list. It seems my occurrence in the thread was about my troll like nature which was seen as very unproductive. It was my talk about browser implementers working together for the common good of the web. But the cake must go to Microsoft. You wouldn’t know via the IE blog that I created many test cases to show how shocking IE7 was.

    Anyway. I do believe that Ingo Chao and Bruno Fassino should be acknowledged and accepted as peers of the CSS WG.

    The problems of the web or W3C survival will never be fixed when the multinationals that have voting rights at the W3C don’t give more money.

  2. On May 28, 2010, 12:17 CEST, Richard said:

    Is W3C, select supporters based on money they give, donations or by any other activities?

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