Difference between revisions of "Payments Task Force"

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(Related Pages)
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* [[Money transfer for the unbanked]]
* [[Money transfer for the unbanked]]
* [[W3C Web Payments Community Group]]
* [[W3C Web Payments Community Group]]
* [http://promiselanguage.blogspot.com Promise Language]
* [[Promises as a basis for payments]]
See also [https://www.w3.org/Team/wiki/Payments_Task_Force Team internal wiki] (obsolete)
See also [https://www.w3.org/Team/wiki/Payments_Task_Force Team internal wiki] (obsolete)

Revision as of 11:35, 1 March 2013

What do people want? What can W3C practically achieve? Who would work with W3C to drive this forward?

Web application developers want to monetise their work, particularly on mobile where ads are not as effective as on desktop. The Open Web Platform does not yet offer standard ways to transfer money, demonstrate proof-of-purchase, and meet other payment needs. Without a standard, developers are forced to turn to native platforms, or use solutions that work for one service provider but not another.

What are the opportunities and challenges for Web based payments? Can we provide a means whereby users have a free choice in which means of payment they can use in any given situation? What is the relationship to eWallets that reside in your phone or in the cloud? How can we enable valued added third party services?

There was a headlights initiative on this in 2012, as well as a Community Group looking at particular approaches. The W3C staff believes that the platform and industry have evolved in the past year to the point where we need to revisit the question as a community.

Draft plan of action

The process will last several months culminating in a presentation at the Tokyo AC meeting in June. The aim is to reprioritize W3C resources to ensure we remain relevant to our mission to lead the Web to its full potential.

How to get involved

Please subscribe to the public mailing list public-web-payments@w3.org. See the link on that page for details. If you already have a W3C Account, you will also be able to edit this wiki. To get a W3C account, fill out the account request form. In case of further questions, please contact the following:

  • Dave Raggett <dsr@w3.org>

Note: anyone making a substantive contribution to W3C specifications on the Recommendation track will be required to commit to the requirements of the W3C Patent Policy.

How will the task force operate?

Mostly through email and communal editing* of this wiki. We will organize teleconferences if the need arises. Likewise, if it makes sense, we could organize a face to face meeting. If you're willing to host a meeting let us know!

* Note that the W3C site should not be used as a marketing platform for products, so all contributions to this wiki will be reviewed for their suitability.

Sign up to help with a particular area

We're looking for volunteers to help with particular areas. If you are interested, please let us know on the mailing list (see above).


You are invited to add your name and affiliation to the list on the following page.


What is the scope for web payments? Here are some ideas for consideration:

  • Online payments to a website, or web app developer
  • Small payments as part of a prior arrangement
  • Offline payments, that can be redeemed when you go online
  • Payments via tapping your device against another
  • Mobile and cloud based wallets
  • Person to person payments
  • Use of community based currencies
  • Use of third parties as means to bridge gaps, e.g. currency conversion and different kinds of payment systems
  • Proof of purchase
  • Support for holding payments in escrow pending completion of transaction
  • Secure means to track your payments
  • Relationship of payments to systems of identifiers (people, organizations, currencies, products, etc.)
  • Anonymous payments
  • Role of national governments and international treaties in relation to web payments, e.g. questions of open markets, accountability, anonymity, community based currencies, cross-border payments, taxation, and so forth.
  • Value added services including vouchers, discount coupons, recommendations, reviews, etc.
  • Other standardization efforts relating to web payments
  • Security requirements and strong authentication


Use this space to ask questions, either to frame the group's discussion or to start a list for developer survey:

Note that you are strongly encouraged to put details into fresh wiki pages linked from here. Please use page names that are unique to avoid clashes with other users of this wiki.

  • To what extent is it possible to define an API that web applications can use to request payments, such that this API is independent of the user's choice of payment provider?
  • What is unique about Web payments? What do we need that isn't satisfied by current credit/debit card or money transfer solutions?

  • Can all financial transactions can be described as:

One promise for another. Did each side deliver?

Abbreviated example of a banking protocol:

     1 pack of gum
  • Why the word "promise"? Because "promise" connotes time. There is no such thing as an "instantaneous transaction".

Related Pages

See also Team internal wiki (obsolete)