Antitrust and competition guidance - 2017 version

Status: This document is superseded by "Antitrust and competition policy - 2024 version". It was in effect between 1 March 2017 and 7 March 2024. Participants who join W3C work groups are shown the W3C antitrust and competition policy.


W3C is dedicated to the development of technical specifications and best practices for interoperability. W3C does not play any role in the competitive decisions of W3C participants nor in any way restrict competition. W3C's policy is that its activities are conducted to the highest ethical standards and in compliance with all applicable antitrust and competition laws and regulations. The W3C Process is designed to support open and fair deliberations leading to consensus-based decisions and to assure that Web standards produced by that Process can be implemented on a royalty-free basis.

Participants develop competing technologies, products, and services. Participants must ensure that their conduct does not violate antitrust and competition laws and regulations. For example, participants should not discuss product pricing, methods or channels of product distribution, division of markets, allocation of customers, or any other topic that should not be discussed among competitors. It is each participant’s responsibility to obtain appropriate legal counsel regarding their conduct in W3C and to comply with applicable antitrust or competition laws and regulations.