Web Payments Community Group Telecon

Minutes for 2013-12-11

  1. US Federal Reserve Response Paper
  2. Branding Issue w/ payswarm.com vs. web-payments.org
  3. Web Payments Workshop
  4. Web Identity and WebID differences
Manu Sporny
Dave Longley
Dave Longley, Manu Sporny, David I. Lehn, Pindar Wong, Erik Anderson, Charles McCathie Nevile
Audio Log
Dave Longley is scribing.
Manu Sporny: Any updates/changes to the agenda?
David I. Lehn: We should talk about the PaySwarm / web-payments.org branding issue.
Manu Sporny: Ok, we'll add that to the Agenda.

Topic: US Federal Reserve Response Paper

Manu Sporny: some of the more recent edits to the paper have made it harder to read by using language that is more complex than necessary. It comes across as a bit too lecturing and academic now, we want the paper to be accessible to general readers, we want to bring the fed in to work with us, not scare them away.
Pindar Wong: i agree, that pretty much addresses my concerns. I leave the editing consistency etc. to you, i think we have an advantage to being totally transparent here. I ask that you tighten up the document, i would change the ordering (putting web payments first) and do some alphabetical ordering, i think the ending is great, and i like that we invite the fed to participate
Dave Longley: I've updated much of the problematic changes that make the document harder to read.
Manu Sporny: we're trying to make the fed paper more accessible/open and be an invitation to the them and keep it friendly vs. how it has kind of turned out in the last few days
Manu Sporny: if you have any input Erik, that would be great
Erik Anderson: i'll take a look as soon as the call is over
Manu Sporny: great, that basically covers the first item, once we make some final edits we'll be in good shape ... was hoping to clear some edits with joseph on the call today, but he's not here yet
Manu Sporny: we'll get it cleaned up and ready to submit soon. We'll submit it at 5pm ET today.

Topic: Branding Issue w/ payswarm.com vs. web-payments.org

Manu Sporny: we've been going around the world talking about the web payments work, we had codenamed all this technology "payswarm" and we've got the site where everything lives right now. We've been getting some pretty strong pushback from payment companies thinking we are pushing a proprietary solution. It's a misconception on their part, and we don't know if this is some sort of strategic positioning such that they can take credit for the Web Payments work after the fact.
Manu Sporny: So the "PaySwarm" branding is either confusing people, or people want it removed due to strategic/political reasons. The main argument has been that they don't want a proprietary solution to the web (which PaySwarm is not at all - completely open, developed transparently, no patents, etc.). So what we can do is mirror the payswarm.com work on web-payments.org and change the messaging over to "Web Payments" and push the PaySwarm code name far lower (to the specs?).
Manu Sporny: to further reinforce that we're working out in the open and transparently and there's no patents we're trying to assert on this work and anyone can use it and implement it
Manu Sporny: So, it seems like the payswarm brand is getting in the way
Erik Anderson: i agree with that
Erik Anderson: putting "open" in front of everything is what the community looks for
Erik Anderson: still need a codename for the tech, like open payment solution or something
Erik Anderson: something generic
Manu Sporny: ok, we'll figure out where the community wants to go for the name of the tech
Manu Sporny: i'm sure people will have input on it, but we don't want to end up in a bikeshedding discussion about it
Manu Sporny: we don't want the payswarm brand name to block what we're trying to accomplish here

Topic: Web Payments Workshop

Manu Sporny: the announcement for the workshop went out last week
Manu Sporny: we have our first set of chairs, we've got the beginning of the program committee, we have a fairly broad representation from mobile, offline/online payment processors, security folks, wired/wireless telcos, gsma, bloomberg, number of other folks
Manu Sporny: we're trying to round out the program committee getting more banking and govt and retailer participation
Manu Sporny: we're focusing on that over the next couple weeks, and doing outreach to get people to submit papers and to do presentations, etc.
Manu Sporny: we'll be finalizing chairs and committee by end of december, papers due feb 8, we hope to have the program and papers posted by beginning of march, deadline for registration is the 19th, worshop is 24-25th of march in Paris, France
Manu Sporny: That's where we are with the web payments workshop. We have SWIFT involved now, which is great, they are the standards group for all of the world banks. It's a big deal that they are involved along side tech companies, we are demonstrating lots of industries here, pretty broad discussion about payments on the web in general to be had.
Manu Sporny: Pindar, we'd like participation from ICANN and Creative Commons in the workshop program committee with a deadline for december 30th and the program committee is filling up fairly quickly, so the sooner we get input from the other organizaitons you're involved with the better
Pindar Wong: ok, send me a side note and i'll work on that
Manu Sporny: anything else we should talk about or inform the public about?
Erik Anderson: i'm expecting that this will branch out from just payments to other financial protocols (securities, etc.) on the Web
Erik Anderson: i have a lot of contracts into JP morgan, etc. if you'd like me to bring in a large bank, and securities folks.
Charles McCathie Nevile: We have to be careful abou tthe scope of this workshop. It's pretty much about payments right now - can we figure out a clean way to pay people via the Web.
Charles McCathie Nevile: i think we don't want to go out of scope for the workshop
Manu Sporny: if we make it too broad it will be too difficult to move everything (payments, securities, etc.) together at the same time
Manu Sporny: i agree with chaals, but i'm also concerned about what Erik mentioned. We've titled it "web payments" and people are getting the impression that it's only about payments on a website. If we do justice to the protocols here, this will also be as the core protocol for mobile payments. It will be able to be extended as the core payment protocol for point of sale devices, etc. there's no reason other things can't use the web payments protocol behind the scenes as it's really just a mechanism to do payments over the Internet. It can easily extend out to retail POS and electronic cash registers, and what Erik is getting at, retail banking, larger financial sector initiatives like that.
Manu Sporny: we want the workshop to be fairly constrained in talking about how we're focused on web payments right now, because we don't want to bite off more than we can chew, but the vision is to apply this technology to all payments.
Erik Anderson: its transfer of electronic assets, it goes as far as that because it's generic. People should understand that.
Erik Anderson: JP morgan has had a patent on an open payment system since 1999, so it's important to have them involved.
Charles McCathie Nevile: i think people would like to have JP involved, i dont' think it's a negative thing, there are several people who are chasing them to be involved.
Manu Sporny: we should deifnitely get them involved
Erik Anderson: i won't involve anyone that we don't discuss, we want to make sure we are adding value not subtracting, because every addition takes up time from others
Manu Sporny: we'll take this back to the program committee for the workshop. There's an open question about how we're messaging the workshop to the public. We're trying to get aligned on our messaging and what exactly the scope is. We'll take this input back to the Web Payments Workshop Program Committee.

Topic: Web Identity and WebID differences

Manu Sporny: question raised on mailing list on difference between WebID spec and Web Identity spec
Manu Sporny: Melvin said he didn't see much of a difference, but there is a pretty big difference
Manu Sporny: WebID is mainly about cryptographic login on the web and they are trying to layer on top of X.509 stuff that's been built into the Web since the 90s. The basic expression of identity is the same-ish, but the Web Payments Identity stuff is very different from there on out.
Manu Sporny: payments Web Identity is about how you store govt credentials, etc. with your online identity and read/write that identity
Manu Sporny: how does, for instance, persona tell a website that there's extended identity info somewhere so if you're logging into a bank and the bank wants to verify that you're a citizen of country X, how does the bank automatically do that with your approval? There is no clear answer to that question in WebID.
Manu Sporny: the web identity payments stuff also has to do with how we tie in cryptographic assertions into someone's identity online
Manu Sporny: this identity mechanism that we're talking about has to enable writing to the identity (not covered by WebID), you have to be able to read specific data with permission from the identity holder, for instance, and immigration control wanted to read your info, there must be some authorization from you to let them do that, if a vendor wants your shipping address, there has to be an authorization from the identity holder to allow that to happen and we have to spec that out
Manu Sporny: the fifth thing that's different is that we want to be able to read and write to the identity via post and redirect, purely via web browser to bootstrap the process, but we need an automated way of doign ACL lists so you can do things like say you are fine with your bank getting your mailing address from you whenever you want, but only your bank, etc.
Manu Sporny: that's not something the WebID group is attempting to address
Manu Sporny: the final thing that we're a bit different with is that we are putting into the spec how you do digital endorsements
Manu Sporny: this will tell institutions like banks and govts how you digitally sign information such that that information can be placed into one of these identities, so someone can issue an electronic passport, your age, etc. whatever they can do that by following this spec
Manu Sporny: those are the high-level differences in this spec, there's one other difference which is WebID requiring the use of Turtle as the serialization format; the people working on the web identity payments spec believe turtle doesn't have enough deployment and we'd prefer JSON/JSON-LD over something like turtle
Manu Sporny: that isn't to say that systems can't content-negotiate for turtle, they can certainly do that
Manu Sporny: Number of Web APIs tracked: 10,503
Manu Sporny: Number of JSON-based APIs : 4,918
Manu Sporny: Number of RDF-based APIs : 74
Manu Sporny: but based on programmable web API stats, JSON is the clear winner over RDF-based APIs and RDF uses multiple serialization formats, many of them are RDF/XML, and may not even use Turtle, but assuming they all do, it's a tiny number to compare against JSON
Manu Sporny: if we're creating these Web apis we have to have JSON as the primary mechanism of communication, doing anything else is going against the mainstream for how apis are done today
Manu Sporny: that's an overview of how this work (web identity for payments) is different from WebID
Manu Sporny: we also plan to integrate with persona, etc.
Erik Anderson: the problem i have is that the names are ambiguous
Erik Anderson: identification/authorization, etc are better spelled out than using "id" and translating to other languages makes it even more difficult, as for turtle, i don't even know what it is, JSON is well known.

Created by the Web Payments Community Group. Shared with love under a CC-BY license.