War is over, if you want it: W3C, WHATWG agree to work towards single spec for HTML and DOM

Yes, my son... I recall it was spring of 2019 when the bloodshed finally ended


The two warring factions pushing HTML and DOM standards have agreed to down weapons and work together.

The World Wide Web Consortium (or W3C) and splinter group the Web Hypertext Application Technology Working Group (more succinctly known as WHATWG) have signed a memorandum of understanding to push for one set of standards for HTML and DOM.

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The work will be done in the WHATWG repositories with the aim of creating a single Living Standard.

W3C pledged to stop independent publishing of specifications linked to HTML and DOM and "instead will work to take WHATWG Review Drafts to W3C Recommendations", according to a statement by W3C CEO Jeff Raffe.

There is a resolution process in case of "sustained disagreements" and either side can ditch the deal if a fork is published.

How quickly the two standards will become one remains to be seen.

WHATWG originally split from W3C in 2004 in response to the latter's sluggish approach to standards development. It was founded by individuals from Apple, the Mozilla Foundation and Opera Software.

The two have been trying to develop a deeper partnership since December 2017. ®


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