Developers and businesses who want to get involved in the creation of Web standards now have an easier and more efficient way of doing so, thanks to the World Wide Web Consortium's (W3C) launch of Community and Business Groups today.

The W3C's new Community Groups allow any developer to propose a working group for a proposed standard. As soon as there is some degree of support for the standard among peers, the group, which is free to participate in, can get started.

Similarly, industry and business representatives who want to create or contribute to the development of Web standards can do so via Business Groups, which offer a "vendor-neutral forum for the development of market-specific technologies." The first Business Group will be one specialized for the oil and gas industry.

"Innovation and standardization build on each other," said Jeff Jaffe, CEO of the W3C. "The stable Web platform provided by W3C has always encouraged innovation. As the pace of innovation accelerates and more industries embrace W3C's Open Web Platform, Community Groups will accelerate incorporation of innovative technologies into the Web."

Previously, the only way to contribute to the creation of a standard was to present it through a W3C working group, where it may or may not get any traction and move forward. With the introduction of these new groups, developers and businesses can get more directly involved in the adoption of a standard, and can do so with access to the W3C's infrastructure.

Jaffe first told us about the groups in a session at the ReadWriteWeb 2Way Summit in June.

The W3C isn't wasting any time getting started with this new initiative. The first groups to launch will include Web Payments, Semantic News, XML Performance and Declarative 3D for the Web Architecture.