After Molly H.’s Call To Action and follow up post (read them) on her blog, I started wondering what the Web Standards Project (WaSP) actually does. I’m not saying this to be mean. I’m genuinely curious.
If you look at the blog posts on their Web site, most of them are updated very infrequently and when they are its very rarely meaty stuff.
What happened to the banner of radical transparency that we all hold so high?
I ask this question because as a Web Standardista I’m told that the Web Standards Project is where the best of the best come to hatch master plans to help conquer the world for Web Standards.
If the organization isn’t transparent with what’s going on… if they aren’t transparent with their discussions, how can they ask me to trust them as an organization?
5 thoughts on “What Does The Web Standards Project Do?”
I’ve often wondered the same thing and I was hoping that the WaSP Street Teams (announced last year at SXSW) were going to be the thing that would “open” up the WaSP. Sadly though nothing, and I do mean nothing, has come out of it. The Street Team website hasn’t been updated since the original announcement and no postings have been made to the mailing list.
So I agree with you, just what are they up too?
Justin, you make two assumptions, 1) WaSP has been really active; 2) Organizations need to be transparent.
As part of WaSP I can tell you that when Molly left things drifted to a crawl on many fronts. The Dreamweaver, Accessibility, and Education Task Forces plugged along and were open and sharing with their lists and IRC meetings. Centralized communication fell off and Buzz fell off.
Part of the quite it due to everybody being utterly swamped with their day job and the other was WaSP communication structure broke. We are working on fixing this and ironing out a way forward that makes sense. There are a ton initiatives that WaSP should be involved in, but have not had the focus nor resources (hours, people, and communication structures).
The second assumption about transparency is a really long discussion. I agree in principle that WaSP should be more open and it is quite open to those interested in the TaskForces.
But, in the world of companies as organizations there needs to be far more openness than their currently is, but for legal, SEC, and competitive reasons transparency and openness only goes so far. But most companies believe in 80 to 90 percent of their information being closed, which causes a lot of problems and expense. The restrictions business have on them should allow them to be 30 to 40% closed (both internally and externally).
Would either of you Justins or, heck, even you Thomas 🙂 be interested in talking about how we can make WaSP more relevant on a face-to-face basis in the DC area? Whether it’s as a WaSP Street Team initiative, or a WaSP Cafe, or by just making the DC Web Standards Meetup more interesting… whatever. Things usually get done in WaSP by someone just going out and doing them, so I’d like to hear from people who care.
Porter sounds like a good idea. I am out of DC a huge chunk of the Fall.