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Re: From W3C's eCommerce Interest Group of the 1990s to Today's Web Payments Discussion

From: Anders Rundgren <anders.rundgren.net@gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 22 Apr 2014 13:16:49 +0200
Message-ID: <53564FA1.7030108@gmail.com>
To: Hannes Tschofenig <hannes.tschofenig@gmx.net>, Web Payments CG <public-webpayments@w3.org>
On 2014-04-22 11:58, Hannes Tschofenig wrote:
> Hi Joseph,
> those are indeed very good questions and I hope someone can share their
> views.
> After the workshop I was also wondering what exactly makes the payment
> topic difficult. My impression is that the technology is the easy part.
> Everyone can come up with a new data model, new protocol extension, and
> crypto protocol. The tough part seems to be about finding the right mix
> of incentives for various parties to deploy the technology.
> It would have been useful to learn more from those who had been involved
> in some of those efforts to get a better understanding of why things
> failed.

Hi Hannes,

You don't have to walk particularly far to see why there are problems:
Although Android is open source the Google Wallet code and architecture
has AFAICT not been released to the public.

That is, a payment protocol, code etc. is usually tied to a business.

Getting existing players supporting an open and neutral payment system
is a daunting task.

Right now we are awaiting 100+ mobile payment start-ups to fail.  Most of
them claim the have unique patents as well.  In fact, if you ask a VC
for funding and say you want to create an open non-licensed payment
protocol they will probably think you are insane :-)

Regarding the tech-part I disagree.  To date *nobody* have succeeded
connecting the web and payment cards except through proprietary and/or
secret methods.  There are efforts in W3C to do that but IMO they probably
won't succeed because payment cards weren't designed for the web and
"the big three" have chosen another path (although they keep mum about it).

This is BTW the biggest fail of all since this is the sole reason to
why we still toil with authenticated card numbers and ridiculous
clear-text passwords like CCV.


> Ciao
> Hannes
> PS: The IETF has also done work in this area and it also failed:
> http://datatracker.ietf.org/wg/trade/charter/
> On 04/07/2014 01:15 PM, Joseph Potvin wrote:
>> Further to the wrap-up discussion about the creating on an Interest Group
>> http://www.w3.org/2013/10/payments/minutes/2014-03-25-wrapup/
>> Does anyone on these lists have the "two-decades view" of W3C
>> involvement with this topic?
>> http://www.w3.org/ECommerce/
>> http://www.w3.org/TR/EC-related-activities
>> http://www.w3.org/ECommerce/Micropayments/
>> http://www.w3.org/TR/NOTE-jepi
>> Three questions:
>> 1. What happened to those original efforts towards a W3C Specification
>> on eCommerce that would have included specifications on web payments?
>> 2. What should we learn from substance and fate of those earlier efforts?
>> 3. Is there a need to "start" a new IG?  Or might the W3C eCommerce IG
>> just re-convene, update its charter, and carry on?
>> Joseph Potvin
>> On Thu, Apr 3, 2014 at 11:51 AM, Stephane Boyera <boyera@w3.org> wrote:
>>> Dear All,
>>> Thanks to the great help from the Web Payments Community Group and Manu
>>> Sporny, we just published a new cleaned version of the minutes of the
>>> workshop at
>>> http://www.w3.org/2013/10/payments/minutes/
>>> The agenda with links to slides and presentations is available at
>>> http://www.w3.org/2013/10/payments/agenda
>>> We are planning to circulate a draft report for your comments in the next 10
>>> days.
>>> Best
>>> Stephane
>>> --
>>> Stephane Boyera        stephane@w3.org
>>> W3C                +33 (0) 6 73 84 87 27
>>> BP 93
>>> F-06902 Sophia Antipolis Cedex,
>>> France
Received on Tuesday, 22 April 2014 11:17:25 UTC

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