Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee founded the World Wide Web Consortium in 1994 to ensure the long-term growth of the web. From the start the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has been an international community where member organizations, a full-time staff, and the public work together to develop open web standards. Led by Director Tim Berners-Lee and CEO Jeffrey Jaffe, W3C's mission is to lead the web to its full potential.

concentric circles: 1 director, 50 team members, 1.5K in work group, 12K in community groups, 1.9B internet users

W3C Community

W3C's global standards constitute the toolkit for solutions that scale, enabling innovators to solve hard problems, providing the proper foundations to meet requirements for accessibility, internationalization, privacy, and security on the web.

Standards that meet the varied needs of society are created not by one company but through the work of the Web Consortium community:

  • Members: More than 450 Members from around the world lead the development and implementation of standards.
  • Staff: W3C is a not-for-profit organization whose revenues come primarily from Membership dues. These and some grants support a staff of 50 to 60 people.
  • Developers: More than 10,000 developers worldwide participate in the standards development.

"The web is humanity connecty by technology."

Sir Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the web

Open standards that make a difference

Our community has developed hundreds of open standards that have enabled the creation of more than a billion web sites, including transformative phenomena such as social media, e-commerce, and search engines.

Royalty-free to boost adoption

W3C standards may be used by anyone at no cost: if they were not free, developers would ignore them.

Built-in inclusivity

W3C technologies and guidelines make it possible for people with disabilities to access the web. The web supports communication in many of the world's languages.

Securing the web

New W3C standards improve web security through the development of authentication technologies that can replace weak passwords and reduce phishing and other sophisticated cyberattacks.


In orchestrating these activities, the Web Consortium has earned a reputation for fairness, quality, and efficiency.

Though not well-known by the general public, the Web Consortium has earned recognition for its global impact: the Boston Globe ranked W3C the most important achievement associated with MIT in its first 150 years.

The Web Consortium's impact even extends beyond this planet: NASA has used W3C standards in both the Spirit and Opportunity Mars rovers.

The organization has won three Emmy Awards: in 2016 for its work to make online videos more accessible with captions and subtitles, in 2019 for standardization of a Full TV Experience on the web, and again in 2022 for standardizing font technology for custom downloadable fonts and typography for web and TV devices.