We are
the Web
webmobs manifesto

Webmobs are the real Web life

Webmobs are present on any Web page they visit.

Webmobs meet each other on Web pages.

Webmobs communicate on Web pages.

The Internet works exactly like the offline world: people who are in the same place at the same time can see each other and talk to each other.

Web life is real and Webmobs are real people.


People who read the same content at the same time have something to talk about. They have a right to see each other and talk to each other without supervision or preconditions.

Webmobs are the free people of the Web.

Freedom means to be present on any web site.

Freedom means to be able to talk to anyone.

Freedom means to meet beyond the limits of chats rooms and community pages.

Freedom means to be self-confident and self-determined.

Freedom means to regain the web.

Webmobs do not have to publish their address, their preferences, or a list of friends to create their networks.

Webmobs don't pay with money or profile data for the permission to talk.

Communication Spaces

The Web is a real world.

Webmobs move and meet in public and private spaces.

All Web pages and Web sites are property. Owners of Web spaces are responsible for the communication on their property.

Index pages, search platforms, and bookmark lists are the places and streets of the Web. They are public spaces. Owners of public spaces must provide equal access to anyone regardless of online or offline attributes.

Webmobs should behave decently as in the offline world. They are guests on the pages they visit and should behave as such.

Webmobs should be tolerant of a user's representation and language. They can always move away from harassment or let the software ignore the user. A ban by the owner is the very last resort.


Avatars represent users on pages.

Users can choose their avatar as they like.

Avatars can be imported from and exchanged with other worlds.

Avatars move around on the page. They should be animated and lifelike.

Avatars can represent real or artificial personalities. Its the users choice.

Virtual Presence

Virtual Presence means presence on Web locations.

Webmobs can be present on multiple pages at the same time.

Virtual Presence is not like general Instant Message presence. You won't know if someone is online. You only know if someone is at the same location as you are.

The Virtual Presence system should interoperate with Instant Message systems.

Virtual Presence should be free of artificial technical barriers, free of commercial protectionism, and free of administrative limitations.

Virtual Presence System

We demand a scalable Virtual Presence system, large enough to support all Web users and not controlled by a single organization or company.

There should be no single access point for clients.

There should be no central registration of users.

The Virtual Presence server system should be a network of federated servers, where each server is responsible for a part of the Web.

Owners of Web property should be able to run their own chat server or rent chat rooms for their part of the Web.


The user's privacy must be protected.

URLs are private. URLs must not leave the user's computer.

Observation must be impossible without being aware of the observer.

People can use their Instant Message accounts for Virtual Presence. But they can also choose anonymous accounts.

Technical Elegance

We demand an unified, ubiquitous and open Virtual Presence network.

People communicate in chat channel while they are visiting Web sites. Any chat network and any chat protocol can be part of the virtual presence network. The Virtual Presence network can use multiple protocols.

Mapping rules describe associations between Web sites and chat channels. They map document URLs to chat channel URLs.

Chat channels are the true virtual locations. Web pages are just pages.

The participant list of a chat channel is the presence list of a virtual location.

A unified location mapping is the key to unified Virtual Presence.

Chat protocols are implementation detail.

Operators of Web sites should be able to control the location mapping for their Web space.

Web servers provide mapping rules for their documents. The configuration should be simple for Web masters.

All clients use the same location mapping rules so, that all clients choose the same chat channel for a given document URL. Clients adhere to Web site specific mapping rules.

The right to control the URL mapping is the key to domestic authority on Web space.

The Virtual Presence system needs default mapping rules, which will be used if the Web site does not provide its own mapping rules. The default mapping rules shape a large part of the virtual space.

Default mapping rules and site specific rules constitute the global location mapping system (LMS).

Looking Back

There was a time before Webmobs, when the Web was lifeless and static. Today we can not imagine the Web without the people.

There was a time when chat systems were separated by protocol boundaries and administrative measures. Now, they are all part of the unified Virtual Presence network.

Virtual presence on Web pages was the first step to the unification of online spaces. Today our avatars live in housing worlds, adventure in role playing worlds, go shopping in virtual malls, and browse the Web for information.

Webmobs made the Web as social place.