Re: Updates for the Grop [via Credibility Community Group]

There's a deeper need here.  The practical work I've been doing recently
has focussed on how to manage three interacting environments - the
information space, specifically how to improve the boosting of informative
signals (think covid, election, similar information) and find and reduce
things like information voids (places where people seek information because
of where they are, how they're named, phrases used etc); the risk space
(misinformation narratives etc); and the response space.  Doing those three
things well would be a lot easier with credibility standards we could apply
consistently across the information space.

My apologies for being quiet in here Sandro - I've been a little busy.


On Mon, 19 Jul 2021, 4:42 am Sandro Hawke, <> wrote:

> I concur with your basic point, Bob, and to my eye it lines up with our
> mission statement well enough that I'd venture we all agree. The tech
> industry should do something about this problem, and do it in a way that
> wont make things even worse.
> The question is how.  You say, let's get together and talk about it, at
> least.  Well, we did.  Have you read carefully through the Credibility
> Tech <>and Reviewed
> Credibility Signals <>?  And there
> are lots of meeting notes and presentations at meetings, at all
>  We made some progress, but not even enough to catch up with
> the rate the problem is getting worse in the world at large, I fear.
> In my judgement, the most promising solutions are in credibility networks,
> or reputation networks focused on credibility. That lets everyone say
> everything, at the same time as each of us mostly only sees the good stuff.
> But that work isn't nearly ready for standardization -- there isn't even a
> single product that's proven it works let alone an industry that needs to
> work together. I've spent most of the last year experimenting with
> prototypes and I had encouraging results but nothing like a proven
> solution. There are some companies out there (and in this group) like
> repustar and creopoint which take their own promising but unproven
> approaches to the problem. But, again, they're nowhere near ready for
> interoperation or standardization.
> Like, *how* can the industry or this group work together to solve the
> problem?  There are various places to meet and chat and collaborate --
> technical and academic conferences, where some of those can happen. W3C is
> useful when companies with viable products want to make them work together.
> I don't see that here.  Sometimes it can go farther afield, but if there's
> no clear plan, people are not likely to come along.
> On Leonard's point -- C2PA is an example of the kind of thing W3C could
> help with, but Leonard has plenty of his own experience with standards and
> they chose a somewhat different path. I expect it made more sense given the
> exact details of their slice of the industry. I think it's great work, but
> only a tiny piece of the puzzle. I'm most interested in how they identify
> people and organizations; my advice has been to stay far from blockchains
> on this and just use web pages (eg social media profile URLs).
>       -- Sandro
> On 7/18/21 9:49 PM, Leonard Rosenthol wrote:
> Bob -  well said…
> There are, however, a variety of efforts that are ongoing in other
> places/forums about attempting to provide technology to address various
> aspects of the larger issue(s) raised here.
> For example, I chair the Technical Working Group of the Coalition for
> Content Provenance and Authenticity ( which is working to
> deliver standards in the area of asset provenance.  The C2PA is doing its
> work in conjunction with W3C’s Media and Entertainment WG and a proposed
> PNG update (, the
> ISO’s JPEG Fake Media WG (, ETSI’s ESI TC
> ( and others.
> There is also work going on from Google and Chromium to bring WebAnnots
> more natively in the browser that seem to align with some of your thoughts
> -  I suspect that if that work
> were to gain momentum, it could serve as part of the solution you envision.
> And of course you have Verifiable Credentials and Decentralized ID work
> here at W3C and elsewhere to address identity requirements that are
> necessary to establish any form of trust.
> Leonard
> *From: *Bob Wyman <> <>
> *Date: *Sunday, July 18, 2021 at 9:27 PM
> *To: *Sandro Hawke <> <>
> *Cc: *Credible Web CG <>
> <>
> *Subject: *Re: Updates for the Grop [via Credibility Community Group]
> Sandro,
> Thank you for the clarification. I found it somewhat ironic that an
> announcement concerning leadership of the public-credibility group did not
> appear to be credible...
> I also find it rather bizarre that there appears to be no focal point for
> discussion within the technical community of problems rooted in technology
> even though those issues inspire raging, and often ill-informed,
> discussions outside the community. At this time, it appears that the most
> commonly proposed "solutions" to the problem of credible online speech
> focus on various ways to restrict either our right or our ability to speak.
> It would be unfortunate if such solutions were to be imposed if there exist
> reasonable, but unexplored, technical alternatives that could address
> the problem. I suggest that our responsibility as a community extends
> beyond not only creating and deploying technology but also to doing what we
> can to ensure that others understand it and that technical solutions are
> developed to mitigate or eliminate problems caused by what we have done.
> Just as an engineer would feel responsible to address an unintended bug in
> some software, I believe the technical community should feel responsible to
> address, or at least understand, the unintended consequences of its work.
> If the W3C is not the proper forum for such discussions, what is?
> Given an apparent absence of proposals for technical solutions to the
> problem, I suggest that this group should initially focus on trying to
> generate discussion of the problems, and the inadequacies of existing
> proposals, in the hope that a deeper and more broadly shared understanding
> might generate some useful ideas that could be explored in depth. Thus, I
> would suggest that an attempt be made to reinvigorate the W3C Credible Web
> Community Group Zoom meetings after over a year of inactivity. An hour or
> two of Zoom meetings every month seems like a small investment that might
> have significant impact. Along similar lines, I suggest that the Chair of
> this group should put out a call for fresh proposals in an attempt to flush
> out ideas that have not yet been fully explored or developed. Ideally, that
> call would be made as broadly as possible. I would like to see a news story
> entitled "Web Community seeks solutions to problems" rather than yet
> another story detailing a proposal for how Facebook, Google, or whomever,
> should improve their ability to decide what can and cannot be said in
> public forums.
> My personal belief is that while Web Annotation has been discussed, it's
> potential, when combined with Credibility Signals, has not been fully
> recognized -- either as a means to address credibility or as a potential
> source of entrepreneurial opportunity. As an individual user of the web, I
> believe it should be a simple matter for me to publicly tag or annotate any
> visible resource or fragment as either credible or not, as true or false,
> etc. In essence, I suggest that *the solution to bad speech is more
> speech*. Others may observe that such an ability would simply create a
> cacophony of conflicting statements or claims. But, I am confident that
> we'll be able to develop tools to extract signals from the noise. If
> nothing else, such annotations might help those who operate formal fact
> checking systems by identifying which resources are controversial at
> any particular moment. Also, it should be recognized that when such
> statements are made about me, or subjects close to me, Web Annotations
> facilitate my exercising a "Right to Respond." Today, too much of what is
> said is protected from response by being on sites or in formats that don't
> permit comments or responses from those who have an interest in the truth
> or credibility of statements that are made.
> It is my hope that either this group, or some other group more
> appropriate, will reinvigorate a technical discussion of these issues. What
> is going on in the world of politics and in the press does not appear to me
> to be leading us in a good direction.
> bob wyman

Received on Monday, 19 July 2021 04:29:16 UTC