This Is For You!

RefreshTheWeb is a collaborative effort across domain specialties in Web-based industries to ensure that the World Wide Web:

  • is well-understood by all audiences via clear language;
  • is and remains open and accessible for all who wish to engage;
  • embodies a compassionate, human-first context for all activities.

RefreshTheWeb is dedicated to helping manage the communication issues regarding groups, policies, ethics, values and ecosystems that shape the lives of the people who work to make the Web great every day.

She’s ba-a-a-ck!

After a long hiatus from activities including my time as group lead for the Web Standards Project (WaSP), I’m back and redefining my home base for projects related to the primary goals of RefreshTheWeb. I want to work with anyone who has an interest in the concerns I’ve outlined, or any relevant activities you might be thinking about. Let’s work together to build a colorful community, with regular brainstorming, mentoring, projects, articles, resources and even meetups from anyone who would like to join in such efforts!

Currently, the blog is here as a welcoming point, a get-to-know you coffee spot on the way to actual activities with deliverable outcomes. Some projects are already in their infant stages, others will come from collaborative discussion and individually driven ideas. Introduce yourself in the comments below, and if you’re interested in contributing or have ideas, bring them!

Fair Play

It’s important to note that all resources at this location are intended to be free, and if any licensing or ownership of materials is claimed, the intent is that it will be done so using Creative Commons, Open Source and full public domain licenses and notations.

Similarly, all activities including projects, meetups and online events will be provided freely and done in a helpful way, with participants and organizers working together to manage logistics.

Voluntary Projections

All project work is on a voluntary basis, done out of focus and passion for the platform and its future.

Some existing examples of current projects are:

  • The creation of a glossary of common industry terms with the intent of clarifying and improving communication between Web makers of all disciplines, managers, employers, the media and the general public,
  • Defining the real roles played by Web makers so employers can better articulate job descriptions and real-world skillsets,
  • Identifying the domain areas of expertise within our industry more succinctly and mapping that to a tiered priority of skills,
  • Examining long-term solutions to improve quality of work and life for all Web makers,
  • Creating, Iterating, collaborating, changing and constantly re-examining any active projects

Anyone interested in participating, note that a working wiki will soon be available with starter content and plenty of room for your contributions and ideas!

Good to Know You

Please do say hello and introduce yourself in the comment section!

Yours always,

14 thoughts on “This Is For You!”

    1. Hi Abhijeet! Thanks for your enthusiasm. Is there any project here that speaks to you so far, or is there something you’d like? As a Usability Engineer, my immediate thought would be to have you work up a list of all the various terms employers in your area use when advertising job positions, and the terms that YOU use to actually describe them. For example, I’ve seen job listings for UI Engineers that include all kinds of programming skills unrelated to the actual practice of User Interface Engineering. Part of the problems we all face, I think, is that we don’t share consistent job titles and skill sets. So if you don’t know where to start and would like to help, would you take a few minutes to think about this and make a few suggestions as to the actual job duties within the UE space and what titles are most common, as well as what titles you personally would suggest to improve understanding of the various roles (junior, senior, manager etc.). I’m adding a wiki here so we can have a space to brainstorm these ideas together 🙂 Thank you so much for your support and enthusiasm!

  1. Hello, I’m Mervi Emilia from Finland. I’m a web everything and whatever. I’d love to contribute, or at least hang around and look cute.

    Molly, this sounds great! 🙂

    1. Terrific Mervi – always happy to have web everythings around. And heck yes you can hang around and be cute. We webfolk are all adorable. It’s a natural gift 😀

      You have a love of illustration, correct? I’d love to see some activity bringing back real illustration work (like A List Apart does, and some other sites do, but it’s generally not a strong area in Web design) and I wonder if there’s any interest for you in that regard?

      Otherwise, let’s see where you might find a sweet spot in current projects 😀

      I’m delighted to have you on board Mervi! Thank YOU so very much.

  2. Dearest Molly,

    I’m in! I don’t know exactly how yet, but I’m sure we’ll figure it out. My expertise is in Semantic Web standards, but I’m interested in all aspects of web development. I’m also interested in working to make “niche” technologies like structured data and #a11y markup easy and part of EVERY webdev project, by clearly communicating the practical applications and clear business benefits.

    Thanks for leading the charge, Mols!


    1. Hi Eric,

      Oh we need a Semantic Web person around for sure! I definitely agree with bringing structured data and accessibility to the forefront in development timelines and to increase the velocity at which those things are moving (and there IS finally movement in that regard, but it has taken way too many years and reached far too few).

      As soon as the wiki’s up we’ll have a spot to set up individual pages. I’ll be sure and post when that is ready! Thank you for your interest, and your support. This is going to be fun!

  3. You cannot believe what a pleasure it is to see Mols active again and taking a lead role. Whether successful or not, she has my support.
    Tell me what you need that you think I can help with – assign me to it. You’ve earned the right.

    1. Ah, Kenneth. We’re already successful. So that’s your first task: Realize that FAIL is not permanent. We make a mistake, we work to repair it or we leave it. All of those outcomes, if done with no or as little disruption and harm to others as possible are forms of success.

      The scolding aside (I figured you’d want some for old time’s sake ;-)) I would love for you to help with outreach and getting others involved. You are a very good social connector. What do you think?

  4. Great stuff, Molly. The projects you outline dovetail with much of what the Australian Web Industry Association aims to do here. We see 2016 as an important year for professional issues and the industry. We are 100% on board with a coordinated international effort to set, maintain and improve working life for web professionals (and future professionals!). As AWIA Manager, please regard me as a direct contact point.

    1. Thank you Ricky! Wow, I went over and looked at all you’re doing at AWIA and I’m very impressed. One of my considerations while thinking about what this project would look like was assisting like-minded projects in other locations and related activities that are natural fits for this project. Let’s coordinate!

      I think once we’ve built the site and projects out a bit, we can look at actual ways to assist each other. I know that one very important issue in Australia is certification, which is not nearly as or even considered important just about everywhere else. This is an industry concern, not just an Australian one, for a variety of reasons. Would that be something of interest to discuss in time?

  5. Hello,

    My name is Lee Spendlove and I’m struggling to find my place in this environment that I am passionate about.

    I feel the need to be flippant about what I want to say but don’t really mean it e.g.
    “Defining the real roles played by Web makers so employers can better articulate job descriptions and real-world skillsets,” – You still have HR to get through, ho ho ho.

  6. Hey Molly,

    Count me in for anything on the political and legal side. There are a lot of comments and questions on my ALA piece about what concrete steps we have to take as an industry to professionalise, and at this stage those audiences need real groups and structure, not general ideas about things that might be nice to do someday. I think your plan is spot on.

  7. Hello all, my names Chris, I’m a UX UI designer/developer. I have been in the industry for over 15 years now & would really like to get involved with this project. I adore the Web and I think we need to fix a lot of stuff. Not just on a tech level, but on a human level… Recruiters, managers, directors etc… Don’t have our insight and experience of what the Web is, what is UX to a recruiter, besides a commission for a wrongful placement. Just check linkedin! Most of the folks recruiting for our industry don’t really know what they’re recruiting for… I feel that this issue runs right through the hierarchy and I’ve even witnessed it within teams of devs who are batting for the same side… I may be off topic here? But this issue definitely contributes (in my own experience) to burnout & a loss of self esteem. A glossary would be great way to get a working definition of roles, acronyms etc… Whatever I can do for this project Molly, just let me know. Without, you, Zeldman and Eric Myers I’d most likely never of made it this far. I’d love to help so feel free to drop me some tasks… Thanks Chris 🙂

  8. I’m so glad to see you’re back, and I’m looking forward to seeing what inspired minds can come up with.

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