Microsoft Specs Support Open Web Foundation Agreement

Microsoft makes five Web specifications available under the recently created Open Web Foundation Agreement, or OWFa.

Microsoft announced the week of Nov. 24 that it has made five Web specifications available under the recently penned Open Web Foundation Agreement.

Microsoft officials said the five specifications now available under the OWFa are Version 0.9: OAuth WRAP, Simple Web Tokens, the OpenService Format Specification, the WebSlice Format Specification and the XML Search Suggestions Format Specification. "The latter three specifications will also remain available under both the Open Specification Promise (OSP) and Creative Commons licenses," David Rudin, a senior attorney at Microsoft, said in a blog post.

The Open Web Foundation describes itself as "an independent nonprofit dedicated to the development and protection of open, nonproprietary specifications for Web technologies."

In a Nov. 17 post on the OWF site announcing the agreement, DeWitt Clinton, an OWF board member and Google software engineer, said:

""The Open Web Foundation was founded to help developer communities collaborate and share technical innovation on the web, bringing to the world of formats and protocols the same successful grassroots approaches established by the open source community. Modeled after the Apache Software Foundation and Creative Commons, the Open Web Foundation seeks to facilitate the creation and implementation of specifications with legal agreements that make such work simple, safe, and sustainable.""

Moreover, Clinton said the OWFa "establishes the copyright and patent rights for a specification, ensuring that downstream consumers may freely implement and reuse the licensed specification without seeking further permission."

In his own post, Rudin said:

""I'm a board member of the Open Web Foundation, and I worked with the Foundation's legal committee to help draft its agreement. I'm excited that we've helped establish a legally sound basis for broad participation and adoption of community specifications, which can then transition to formal standardization, if desired.""

For his part, Clinton said specifications that fall under the OWFa "may include everything from small ad-hoc formats sketched out among friends to large multicorporation collaborations that ultimately grow into international recognized standards with the help of formal standards-setting organizations."

The following specifications have been committed to the OWFa:

"??Ç MashSSL Open 1.2.0 (SafeMashUps)??Ç Media RSS 1.5.0 (Yahoo!)??Ç OAuth Core 1.0 Revision A (Facebook, Google, Yahoo!)??Ç OAuth WRAP 0.9 (Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo!)??Ç OpenService Format Specification version 0.8 (Microsoft)??Ç PubSubHubbub (Google)??Ç Salmon Protocol (Google)??Ç Simple Web Tokens 0.9 (Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo!)??Ç WebSlice Format Specification version 0.9 (Microsoft)??Ç XML Search Suggestions Format Specification version as of 11/11/2009 (Microsoft)"