It’s this time again: the W3C is searching for its new Webmaster. So I thought I would share my experience as a former Webmaster.
Let’s start with some history, as the Webmaster position is an old one here at W3C. It’s been there since the early days of the Web. Quickly, the Webmaster position was held by French people via an exchange program, and the tradition has persisted thus far.
The Webmaster is in charge of enforcing the Publication Rules. As the Technical Reports are the most important deliverables produced at W3C, this is a very important task. The usual workflow is that Working Groups contact the Webmaster about new documents to be published, then the Webmaster enforces the quality rules before making the publication effective. Reactivity and diplomacy are definitely required and I’d say that you’ll spend 30% of your time doing that.
The Webmaster also does a lot of support for all of our users: the Public, the Members and the Team. The Webmaster helps people to interact with our tools, makes sure that you can access the right resources on the Website, etc.
So, what happens during the rest of the time? Well, it really depends on the Webmaster, her/his skills, what she/he likes to do and the needs for the W3C. It’s a really wide spectrum. I was personally involved in a Working Group, deployed our DVCS platform and our calendaring systems. I coded in PHP, Java and Scala, and had the opportunity to experiment new things while benefiting from the experience of my always awesome colleagues.
And there is the rest… The Webmaster is required to move to Boston, a very pleasant city, and work at MIT. Also, you get to work within W3C, so you become an insider! If you believe in Web standards and the role of W3C, then this is definitely a great experience. Oh, and you get to meet all these wonderful people that literally make the Web…
So if you meet the requirements for the VI program and are interested by the job, then I hope to hear from you soon.