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The W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) is a committee dedicated to implementing uniform technologies in the use and development of the Internet. The body was founded at MIT in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA in 1994.

The objective of the W3C is standardize technical specifications and determine guidelines for the development of web technologies, so that the basic idea of the World Wide Web is maintained. Technologies such as HTML, XML, CSS, other markup languages, and web services are used by millions of users on a daily basis.

General information

The W3C is a membership organization. In the list where these members appear, there are both economic companies and political organizations, universities and research centers. The main sponsors of the project are the United States Defense Research Agency (DARPA), the European Commission, the European Research Consortium in Informatics and Mathematics (ERCIM) and Keio University in Japan. These hosts are complemented by offices worldwide, which support the work of the W3C from an organizational point of view. So far there are more than 400 members of the W3C, who also make their work viable through certain fixed contributions. Google, Facebook or Apple also participate in the W3C.

The founder of the W3C is Tim Berners Lee, pioneer and founder of the Internet. He wanted to prevent the Internet from being divided into areas that only served commercial or academic interests. The web as such, Lee emphasized, is there for everyone and should not only be used by everyone, but also edited. The goal is to create an open system with open and standardized technologies.

The W3C is based on a strict open source philosophy. Generally, it is considered that one of Lee's greatest contributions is that he has managed to write the basic protocols of the Internet, including Client Server architectures, HTTP, HTML or web browsers as a transparent and democratic procedure. Tim Berners Lee also edited the first website, which is still enabled as a copy.[1] Lee is currently Chairman of the W3C, Professor at MIT and holds a Chair at the University of Southampton.


The W3C offers recommendations. Such recommendations include technology standards that can, for example, define a markup language. These recommendations were established by international task forces communicating through the WWW for a long period of time. This was done through mailing lists, websites, comments and suggestions, which are later edited before they can be published.

A specific rule may be in the works for several years. Especially since the W3C has gotten bigger. At first, a standard could be developed in a few months, since there were fewer members. However, these recommendations are not ISO standards. The W3C protocols only allow the reputation of proposals to be discussed. However, as a group of democratic experts, the W3C enjoys a very good status, which is why almost all protocols are de facto standards.

Among other things, SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) is considered the standard for two-dimensional vector graphics.

Relevance for SEO

The W3C recommendations also have a relatively high reputation among web designers and SEOs. This includes having a clean source code, which can be checked with the W3C Validator. This tool examines the syntax. HTML, CSS, and markup languages such as SMIL or MathML can be checked for validity. If the source code is valid, it is also a signal to search engines that it consists of a reasonably programmed website. However, errors can even be found in the source code of the Google or Microsoft home pages, so some errors do not impact the positioning of a web.

The recommendations are also based on the Semantic Web, because the W3C is already developing the technological foundations for Web 3.0. Examples that are already in use are RDF and linked data marks. Staying up-to-date on this topic can be helpful for SEO.

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