W3C Process Document

8 Member Submission Process

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The Member Submission process allows Members to propose technology or other ideas for consideration by the Team. The formal process affords Members a record of their contribution and gives them a mechanism for disclosing the details of the transaction with the Team (including IPR claims). The Submission process also allows the Team to review proposed technology and accurately relay the status of Submission requests to the media.

Note: To avoid confusion about the Member Submission process, please note that:

The Submission process consists of the following steps:

  1. A Member (possibly on behalf of several cooperating Members) sends a Submission request to the Team; (refer to "How to send a Submission request [MEM8]"). The term "Submitter" is used below to refer to all of the Members involved in a Submission request. Only W3C Members may be listed as Submitting Members.
  2. The Team reviews the request and the Director must either acknowledge or reject it.
  3. If acknowledged, the Team must publish submitted documents as W3C Notes.
  4. If a Submission request is rejected, the Submitter may appeal to either the TAG or the Advisory Board; see details below.

Publication of a Note by W3C does not imply endorsement by W3C, including the W3C Team or Membership. The acknowledgment of a Submission request does not imply that any action will be taken by W3C. It merely records publicly that the Submission request has been made by the Submitter. Documents that are part of an acknowledged Submission request may not be referred to as "work in progress" of the W3C.

The list of acknowledged Submissions [PUB10] may be found at the Web site.

8.1 Submitter Rights and Obligations

When more than one Member jointly participates in a Submission request, only one Member formally sends in the request. That Member must copy each of the Advisory Committee representatives of the other participating Members, and each of those Advisory Committee representatives must confirm (by email to the Team) their participation in the Submission request.

At any time prior to acknowledgment, any Submitting Member may withdraw support for a Submission request (described in "How to send a Submission request" [MEM8]"). A Submission request is "withdrawn" when no submitting Members support it. The Team must not make statements about withdrawn Submission requests.

Prior to acknowledgment, the Submitter must not, under any circumstances, refer to a document as "submitted to the World Wide Web Consortium" or "under consideration by W3C" or any similar phrase either in public or Member communication. The Submitter must not imply in public or Member communication that W3C is working (with the Submitter) on the material in the Submission request. The Submitter may publish the documents in the Submission request prior to acknowledgment (without reference to the Submission request).

After acknowledgment, the Submitter must not, under any circumstances, imply W3C investment in the acknowledged material until, and unless, the material has been adopted as part of a W3C Activity.

The Submitter must agree that, if acknowledged, published material will be subject to the W3C document notice [PUB18] and will include a reference to it. The Submitter may hold the copyright for the content of a W3C Note published as the result of an acknowledged Submission request.

8.2 Team Rights and Obligations

A Submission request must fulfill the requirements established by the Team. The Team must send a validation notice to the Submitter as soon as the Team has reviewed any Submission request and judged it complete and correct.

Prior to a decision to acknowledge or reject the request, the Team must hold the request in the strictest confidentiality. In particular, the Team must not comment to the media about the Submission request.

If a Working Group is already pursuing work in the area of a Submission request, the Team should coordinate its evaluation of the request with the Working Group, while ensuring confidentiality.

8.3 Acknowledgment of a Submission Request

The Director acknowledges a Submission request by sending an announcement to the Advisory Committee. This announcement must be made between one and four weeks after the validation notice. The announcement may be made at any time during the three-week window, but the Team must tell the Submitter, within one week of the validation notice, when the announcement is most likely to be made.

Once a Submission request has been acknowledged, the Team must:

8.4 Rejection of a Submission Request

The Director may reject a Submission request for a variety of reasons, including the following:

In case of a rejection, the Team must inform the Submitter's Advisory Committee representative(s). If requested by the Submitter, the Team must provide rationale to the Submitter about the rejection. Other than to the Submitter, the Team must not make statements about why a Submission request was rejected.

The Advisory Committee representative(s) may appeal the rejection to the TAG if the reasons are related to Web architecture, or to the Advisory Board if the request is rejected for other reasons. In this case, the Team should make available to the TAG its rationale for the rejection. The Team will establish a process for such appeals that ensures the appropriate level of confidentiality.