Skip to main content

Hypertext Transfer Protocol

Document Charter HTTP WG (httpbis)
Title Hypertext Transfer Protocol
Last updated 2021-03-10
State Approved
WG State Active
IESG Responsible AD Francesca Palombini
Charter edit AD Francesca Palombini
Send notices to (None)


This Working Group is charged with maintaining and developing the "core" specifications for HTTP, and generic extensions to it (i.e., those that are not specific to one application).

Its current work items are:

HTTP/1.1 Revision

After the revision of the core HTTP document set in the RFC723x series, the Working Group published HTTP/2, which defines an alternative mapping of HTTP's semantics to TCP, and introduced new capabilities, like Server Push.

Additionally, several ambiguities, interoperability issues and errata have been identified since their publication.

The Working Group will revise the "core" HTTP document set (RFC 7230-RFC 7235) to:

  • Incorporate errata

  • Address ambiguities

  • Fix editorial problems which have led to misunderstandings of the specification

  • Clarify conformance requirements

  • Remove known ambiguities where they affect interoperability

  • Clarify existing methods of extensibility

  • Remove or deprecate those features that are not widely implemented and also unduly affect interoperability

  • Where necessary, add implementation advice

In doing so, it should consider:

  • Implementer experience

  • Demonstrated use of HTTP

  • Impact on existing implementations and deployments


Upon request from the QUIC Working Group, the HTTPBIS Working Group will review the QUIC Working Group's documents regarding the use of HTTP over the transport protocol they define, providing feedback and collaborating where necessary.

Once the QUIC Working Group publishes the expression of HTTP semantics in QUIC (HTTP/3), the HTTPBIS Working Group will maintain and develop extensions for HTTP/3 as necessary. This includes ancillary specifications (e.g. QPACK).

Other HTTP-Related Work

The Working Group may define extensions and other documents related to HTTP as work items, provided that:

  • They are generic; i.e., not specific to one application using HTTP. Note that Web browsing by definition is a generic use.

  • The Working Group Chairs judge that there is consensus to take on the item and believe that it will not interfere with the work described above, and

  • The Area Director approves the addition and add corresponding milestones.