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Publication of VC API as VCWG Draft Note

From: Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com>
Date: Sun, 6 Nov 2022 16:07:36 -0500
Message-ID: <CAMBN2CS0ajsUpNQ8qFPzrRO=5o=djPXnf01qXwBV5wYKR4D6Fg@mail.gmail.com>
To: W3C Credentials CG <public-credentials@w3.org>
Cc: Brent Zundel <brent.zundel@avast.com>, Kristina Yasuda <kristina.yasuda@microsoft.com>, Ivan Herman <ivan@w3.org>
Hi CCG Chairs, VCWG Chairs, and community members,

As many of you are aware, we have been working on a Verifiable
Credentials API[1][2] for the better part of two years, meeting
weekly[3] to move the specification forward. The Traceability
Interoperability[4] group builds upon parts of this specification and
specializes it for use with supply chain use cases. We have VC API
interoperability test suites[5] and it is what drives the
interoperability mechanism used in the CHAPI VC Issuer Playground[6].

We currently have 11 implementations[5][6] of the Verifiable
Credentials API with more in development.

The W3C Verifiable Credentials Working Group Charter lists this
specification as a non-normative deliverable[7]. The expectation is
that it will be published as a Note given that it documents one
mechanism that the market is using to move Verifiable Credentials from
Issuers to Holders to Verifiers. It is also expected that the VC API
will power the VCWG's new test suite.

The CCG VC API Work Item group has prepared the first publishable
Draft Note of the specification[8] for publication by the VCWG. This
version of the specification is a stripped down version that only
contains VC issuing, VC status changing, VC verifying, and VP creation
and is what we have consensus to publish via the CCG VC API Work Item

Now, here's where things get a bit weird. The CCG VC API Work Item
group intends to continue to work on the VC API. W3C Notes have zero
Intellectual Property Release (IPR) protection on them, which means
that if we hand over the VC API repo to VCWG, we will introduce an IPR
gap to the work. That is, in this instance, we have better IPR
protection on it when it's hosted by CCG than if we were to transfer
it over to the VCWG. What we can do, however, is keep the repo in the
CCG (so it continues to enjoy IPR protection) and publish an updatable
fork of the specification via VCWG (we have tested this in the VC API
group, and it works great). For example, you can view what this looks
like here (this is a fork of the VC API spec, specific to VCWG, that
is hosted from my personal Github location):


The only thing that would change when we move it to VCWG is that the
URL would change to:


As far as action items are concerned:

1. W3C CCG Chairs along with W3C VCWG Chairs and Staff will need to
discuss and determine if this is an acceptable path forward.

2. There will need to be a proposal in the CCG to allow VCWG to
publish snapshots of the VC API via the VCWG.

3. There will need to be a proposal in the VCWG to publish the VC API
as a Draft Note.

This is a request to the CCG and VCWG Chairs to start that process
given that 1) we have achieved consensus in the CCG VC API Work Item
group to do the above, and 2) it is listed as a VCWG charter

-- manu


Manu Sporny - https://www.linkedin.com/in/manusporny/
Founder/CEO - Digital Bazaar, Inc.
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Received on Sunday, 6 November 2022 21:08:25 UTC

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