W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-webpayments@w3.org > April 2012

Re: making the webcredits.org spec more strict about 'source' and 'destination' fields.

From: Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com>
Date: Sat, 28 Apr 2012 17:25:22 -0400
Message-ID: <4F9C6042.4020502@digitalbazaar.com>
To: Web Payments <public-webpayments@w3.org>
On 04/28/2012 08:23 AM, Michiel de Jong wrote:
> i'm not saying you should specify law and workflow decisions, just
> that you admit that 'currency: EUR' is /meant/ to mean that the
> amount is in euros. you picked the field names with an intended use,
> right? you intend the 'currency' field to be used for the currency,
> and not for the country where the transaction took place? then say
> so.

Michiel, is this a good enough explanation for your needs?


Or should we elaborate further?

This raises another question - does the vocabulary document constitute
part of the specification? Or does the specification have to re-iterate
what is stated in the vocabulary document?

Standard practice for W3C specs is that each document would be a
Recommendation (meaning that it would go through the standardization
process and then would be frozen in time at some point). This would mean
that both the spec and the vocabulary are normative. In that case,
Melvin merely referring to the vocabulary specification would be good
enough for the purposes that you state.

Additionally, I don't think that any court of law would look at
something like:

   "amount": 140
   "currency": EUR

and not find that the amount was 140 Euro. That is, I think the
possibility of the misunderstanding that you are talking about when
amount and currency are defined is quite low and no amount of harping in
a specification would have much of an effect in a court of law as the
interface that made the transaction would be under more scrutiny than
the resulting contract. That is - courts try to understand 'intent of
the parties transacting' rather than 'intent of the specification used
to perform the transaction'. That said, we should be specific when if
there is doubt.

Look for "com:currency" at the link below:


Note that we re-state what is contained in the vocabulary document to
make sure the intent was clear for the currency associated with a
transaction. This may be a best practice when using these vocabularies
as 1) they may not be REC-track and could change and 2) we may /add
extra semantic meaning/ to vocabulary terms when used in these payment

Just thoughts, no firm preference yet.

-- manu

Manu Sporny (skype: msporny, twitter: manusporny)
President/CEO - Digital Bazaar, Inc.
blog: PaySwarm Website for Developers Launched
Received on Saturday, 28 April 2012 21:25:48 UTC

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