Building the Contract for the Web

Thousands of people have come together to back a Contract for the Web that will define our collective responsibilities to protect a free, open and fair web for everyone. In January 2019, representatives from governments, companies, civil society organisations, and individual citizens began working together to turn a starting set of principles into a full contract.

Through a process of deliberation and negotiation, we are defining what this contract looks like with the goal of agreeing on and publishing a full Contract for the Web in the second half of 2019. Once published, individuals and organisations will have the opportunity to sign up and commit to upholding and promoting the terms outlined in the contract.

How it works

This is how we will turn the Contract for the Web from a list of principles into full commitments — and how you can get involved.

The Core Group

The contract’s development is guided by a core group who played an early role in gathering support for the contract. Meeting regularly to discuss progress and to plan for the contract’s success, this group is designed as a highly-engaged team, representative of the diversity of voices among the contract’s signatories. Core Group members include:

  • Governments: French Government, German Government
  • Civil Society: CIPESA, Web Foundation, The NewNow
  • Companies: Change.org, AnchorFree, Google

Working Groups

A number of working groups will tackle individual principles addressed in the contract and will recommend specific policy commitments to be included in the final version. These groups will provide expert knowledge, deep deliberation and a wide spectrum of views on core issues.

Working groups:

  1. Access (principles 1, 4)
    Commitments from government and the private sector to achieve affordable access, connectivity, and accessibility standards online.
  2. Openness (principle 2)
    Commitments from governments and companies to ensure that all of the internet is available, all of the time.
  3. Privacy & data Rights (principles 3, 5)
    Steps that governments and companies can take to ensure privacy is respected online.
  4. Positive tech (principle 6)
    Steps companies can take to ensure that technology creation and use is focused on human values and better experiences for everyone, and addresses harms and risks.
  5. Public Action (Principles 7, 8, 9)
    Steps that citizens can take towards creating a healthier internet.

Public engagement

Throughout this process, we want to hear from as many people as possible to ensure that the final Contract for the Web truly is for everyone. We will be announcing more ways to share your views, but until then, feel free to get in touch and let us know what you think.

If you’ve already signed up to support the contract, we will email you with updates on the process and more ways you can help.

Questions or suggestions? contract@webfoundation.org.