Each Active Working Group has a page on this Blog in the right side bar. This page articulates what they are and how they work.
Working groups are the fundamental organizational unit of Identity Commons they have have tremendous autonomy — so much so that a Working Group can be a complete separate legal or social entity whose own charter or incorporation need not make any mention of Identity Commons.
The goal of Identity Commons is to foster a culture of and support collaboration amongst the range of individuals and communities interested in the emerging identity & social layer of the web.
Any group of people and/or organizations who want to work together towards a purpose consistent with the Purpose And Principles may form a Working Group, which will automatically become part of Identity Commons unless the Stewards Council raises a specific objection (the goal is a culture of inclusion).
To form a Working Group, the sponsors:
1. Use the Working Group Charter Template to publish a charter on this wiki outlining
- Purposes and scope of work,
- Qualifications and requirements for participation, if any,
- Required licenses or any other restrictions on uses of the working group's work product, if any.
- Method(s) of making decisions together, as needed, and,
- Any other agreements that seem necessary.
- These agreements do not have to be in a tight, legal format. It is much more important that they are clear and straight forward, at least to the participants in the working group and to the Stewards Council. The Working Group Charter Template was developed for this purpose.
2. Select one representative and one alternate to serve on the Stewards Council.
3. Send an email to the Stewards Mailing List.
The only purpose of the Stewards Council is to make organizational decisions for managing resources shared by all Working Groups in the Commons (such as the wiki). Decisions are made by a vote of the majority. The council consists solely of representatives from each Working Group. Its deliberative process is totally open and transparent, and anyone may participate. However, only Working Group representatives may vote on decisions.
The Identity Commons will support the community by allowing its name and brand to be used in conjunction with groups of individuals and/or organizations that organize themselves to pursue work that is consistent with Identity Commons Purpose And Principles.
It is important to note that the use of Identity Common's brand does not imply that a working group is doing work on behalf of Identity Commons. Each working group is doing its own work and is responsible for the quality and reliability of its products. The use of the Identity Commons brand only means that the working group has organized and governed its work in a way that is consistent with our Purpose and Principles. Identity Commons warrants nothing further.
Should serious issues arise about the operation of a working group or its consistency with Identity Common's Purpose And Principles, recognition of a working group can be revoked at the sole discretion of the Stewards Council as empowered by the formal legal board of Identity Commons. We hope this is a rare (or nonexistent) occurence.