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P3P Specification Working Group Charter

The P3P Specification Working Group is a Working Group of the W3C and follows the process as given in the Process Document. This is the charter for this Working Group.


  1. Scope
  2. Deliverables and Schedule
  3. Relationship with Other Activities
  4. WG Membership
  5. Meetings
  6. Group Home Page
  7. Intellectual Property
  8. Confidentiality
  9. W3C Team Involvement


The P3P Specification Working Group will shepherd the P3P 1.0 specification from Candidate Recommendation to Recommendation status.  This Working Group can make changes based on external review and implementation experience during Candidate Recommendation. It should also ensure that P3P does not contain features that would be harmful to the Web, such as features that would cause poor performance, security holes, or interoperability problems with other standards. And it will see that all of the Candidate Recommendation exit criteria are met.

The Working Group will develop and maintain a P3P test suite and validation tools. The Working Group will also assist in developing P3P implementation guides.

Following P3P 1.0 becoming a Recommendation, the Working will monitor the P3P public mailing lists and collect feedback on P3P implementation and deployment experience. If need be, the Working Group will propose updates to the P3P 1.0 specification (P3P 1.x) to correct errors, address critical implementation issues, improve interoperability with other standards, or add new features that are backwards compatible with P3P 1.0.

The Working Group will also maintain a list of suggested new features to be considered for P3P 2.0. Before this Working Group is terminated, it will make recommendations concerning the chartering of a new working group to begin work on P3P 2.0.

The Working Group may also consult with other W3C working groups to help ensure that, as appropriate, new W3C specifications are interoperable with P3P and to identify areas of future work for P3P 2.0 that will address concerns raised by these other working groups.

The P3P Specification working group will inherit the open issues list from the previous chartering of this group.

The P3P Specification Working Group is also chartered to work on the APPEL (A P3P Preference Exchange Language) specification in parallel with the P3P1.0 work. The group expects to distribute a Last Call in January or February 2000 and proceed to Candidate Recommendation when appropriate based on public feedback.

Deliverables and Schedule

The P3P Specification Working Group was originally chartered in July 1999. It distributed to the public a first Last Call draft in November 1999 and a second last call draft in October 2000. It distributed a Candidate Recommendation in December 2000. The Working Group will review implementations as they are put forward to determine whether CR exit criteria are met. Proposed Recommendation is expected in 3-12 months, depending on implementation experience.

In May 2001, the Working Group is rechartered for 12 months. The group expects to produce the following deliverables:

Relationship with Other Activities

P3P is dependent on the following W3C technologies and IETF technologies:  XML, XML Namespaces, XML Schema, HTML, and HTTP. P3P is also related to the CML Protocol Activity, CC/PP, and mobile web work.

WG membership

The level of participation expected of P3P Specification WG members requires that they become experts in P3P; and that they meet the minimum level of participation specified in the W3C Process Document. In addition, WG members are expected to volunteer for assignments such as writing sections of the specification; following up on public comments; creating examples, guidelines, or test cases; reviewing implementations; and taking minutes at working group meetings. All working group members are expected to review working group minutes and drafts and actively participate in working group discussions. Participation is expected to consume one day per week of each WG member's time, though the time commitment for the Chairs and editors may require up to three full days per week.

To become a member of the P3P Specification Working Group, a representative of a W3C Member organization must be nominated by their Advisory Committee Representative (please send email to the Working Group chair and the W3C team contact). The nomination must include explicit agreement to this charter, including its goals, an IPR disclosure and the level of effort required of the representative. Membership is also open to invited experts from the community, selected by the chair in order to balance the technical experience of the group.

In order to maintain good standing status, WG members must consistently participate in two out of three working group meetings (both remote and face-to-face), take on working group assignments, and complete working group assignments in a timely fashion. These criteria may be relaxed at the discretion of the WG Chair and Team Contact for WG members who are contributing to the success of the working group but are frequently unable to participate in meetings due to funding, scheduling, or language issues. 


Weekly phone calls and face-to-face meetings every few months are expected. An up-to-date schedule is kept on the group homepage at http://www.w3.org/P3P/Group/Specification/

Voting rules are as specified in the W3C process.

Minutes of WG meetings shall be reported as required by the Process Document. Minutes are required only to show members present, the results of formal votes, and significant action items; further information is at the discretion of the Chairs.

Group Home Page

The P3P Specification WG has a home page that records the history of the group, provides access to the archives, meeting minutes, updated schedule of deliverables, membership list, and relevant documents and resources. It is maintained by the Chair in collaboration with the W3C staff contact.

Intellectual Property

In order to protect the openness of the Recommendation, members participating in the Working Group will be required make the following commitment to the status of intellectual property rights associated with the Group's work.

Each Member of the Working Group pledges if at any time the member owns intellectual property rights essential to implement the P3P Recommendation then the Member will grant a royalty free license to anyone who implements the P3P Recommendation.

The Director will review the pledge made by each Member seeking to participate in the group before approving that Members request to participate.


The work of the P3P Specification WG is generally covered by the usual W3C member confidentiality agreement. In particular, the WG mailing list archive and the Group home page are accessible by members only. However, it is the intention of this WG that its charter, including its expected deliverable schedule, be a public document. 

W3C Team Involvement

The W3C Team expects to dedicate the services of one part-time engineer to serve as editor of the specification. The W3C Team also expects to dedicate the services of one full-time staff member to serve as staff contact and coordinate outreach activities. The W3C Team also expects to dedicate staff (or contractor) resources to develop P3P implementation guides.

Author:  Lorrie Cranor
Last modified: $Date: 2001/06/27 01:28:11 $ by $Author: janet $