Mozilla is human

April 4, 2014 § 215 Comments

A few days ago I wrote: Mozilla is messy. For better and for worse, the week’s events showed how true that is.

Looking back at the past week, this also comes to mind: Mozilla is human. In all the best and worst ways. With all the struggle and all the inspiration. Mozilla is very very human.

On the inspiration part, I need to say: Brendan Eich is one of the most inspiring humans that I have ever met. He is a true hero for many of us. He invented a programming language that is the heart and soul of the most open communications system the world has ever known. He led a band of brilliant engineers and activists who freed the internet from the grip of Microsoft. And, one-on-one, in his odd and brilliant ways, he helped and advised so many of us as we put our own hearts and souls into building Mozilla and building the web. I was truly excited to see Brendan step into the role of CEO two weeks ago. And, today, I am equally sad.

It’s important to remember that all heroes are also human. They struggle. And they often have flaws. Brendan’s biggest flaw, IMHO, was his inability to connect and empathize with people. I’ve seen and felt that over the years, finding Bredan brilliant, but distant. And you certainly saw it this past week, as many calm and reasonable people said “Brendan, I want you to lead Mozilla. But I also want you to feel my pain.” Brendan didn’t need to change his mind on Proposition 8 to get out of the crisis of the past week. He simply needed to project and communicate empathy. His failure to do so proved to be his fatal flaw as CEO.

I would argue that Mozilla is filled with heroes. Thousands of them. All of them very human, just like Brendan. In the past week, I’ve spent every waking hour with these heroes. And I have watched them struggle. I’ve watched Mitchell struggle with how to protect the soul and spirit of a global community that is filled with passion, dreams, tensions and contradictions. I’ve watched the boards struggle with how to govern something that is at once a global social movement, a valuable consumer brand and a company based in the State of California. I have watched dozens and dozens of Mozillians reflect — and sometimes lash out — as they struggle to figure out what it means to be an individual contributor or leader inside this complex organism. And I myself have struggled with how to help Mozillians sort through all this complexity and messiness. Being human is messy. That is Mozilla.

As I look at the world’s reaction to all this, I want to clarify two things:

1. Brendan Eich was not fired. He struggled to connect and empathize with people who both respect him and felt hurt. He also got beat up. We all tried to protect him and help him get around these challenges until the very last hours. But, ultimately, I think Brendan found it impossible to lead under these circumstances. It was his choice to step down. And, frankly, I don’t blame him. I would have done the same.

2. This story is actually not about Brendan Eich. Of course, the critics and the media have made this a story about Brendan and his beliefs. But, as someone intimately involved in the evens of the past week, I would say in earnest: this is a story about Mozilla finding its soul and its spirit again. Over the past three years, we’ve become better at being A Company. I would argue we’ve also become worse at being Mozilla. We’ve become worse at caring for each other. Worse at holding the space for difference. Worse at working in the open. And worse at creating the space where we all can lead. These are the things that make Mozilla Mozilla. And they are the things we did not have enough of to properly find our way out of the crisis of the past two weeks.

Before getting into this kerfuffle, we were working on the right things. We were building a phone that will truly bring the web into the hands and the pockets of the world. We were teaching the world how the web works. And we were standing up against those who want to break the web or turn into a way to watch what each of us do every day. Those are still the things we need to be doing. And we need to start doing them again on Monday.

What we also need to do is start a process of rebirth and renewal. We need to find our soul and our spirit. The good news: Mozillians know how to do this. We know how to make a phoenix rise from the ashes. That is what we must now do.

§ 215 Responses to Mozilla is human

  • […] “Brendan Eich is one of the most inspiring humans that I have ever met. He is a true hero for many of us. He invented a programming language that is the heart and soul of the most open communications system the world has ever known… It’s important to remember that all heroes are also human. They struggle. And they often have flaws. Brendan’s biggest flaw, IMHO, was his inability to connect and empathize with people.” – Mark Surman […]

    • maxparrish says:

      I had thought that, unlike abortion, the gay marriage issue was pretty much on its way to a happy cultural resolution. It’s clear the bloom is off that rose.

      My initial thought was to introduce my comment by offering the usual assurance to the reader that I am a supporter of legal marriage for same sex couples. But that would not be quite true – I often vacillated between civil union and marriage; thankfully you can’t fire me or threaten my job for incorrect or ambiguous thinking.

      Ms. Baker’s statement and your missive was an eye opener, and one of the more disgusting and Orwellian rationalizations I have read in the last decade. Rather than being honest, and making it a story about how a frightened and mission hypocritical team was unable to face down various thugs and savages, we get a maudlin Red Guard confessionals and whining ‘poor us’ and ‘we will correct our thoughts’ self-criticism. You might as well have said “It’s not about the victim losing his job, don’t ya know, it is all about us” – disgusting.

      All the team towel twisting and cathartic confession of ‘many errors’ is not going to provide Baker and you character and honor. What your organization did was repugnant to civil libertarians , and it crossed a fault line in this country. If the cascade of criticism from all sides (including gay marriage supporters) in the last 24 hours is indicative, the treatment you gave Eich will deservedly be coming back to Mozilla and its staff ten fold.

      You have taught us one thing – its a culture war and anything goes. Hence, my sincerest and deepest hope is that many on your team lose your jobs because of their convictions and that the calls for economic and political retribution on Mozilla is pursued. Rest assured, I will gladly send my donation, and my boss won’t blink.

      At least I know longer have fire fox occupying space on my hard-drive.

      Mark H.

      .

      • A Hermit says:

        You’ll just have to accept that anti-gay bigotry like that evidenced by Eich’s support of a proposal to deprive his LGBT neighbours of their rights is gong the same way as racism and anti-semitism. If Eich had donated to the American Nazi party and got pushback from his Jewish colleagues would you be calling them “thugs and savages” for expressing their disapproval?

      • ertdfg says:

        “You’ll just have to accept that anti-gay bigotry like that evidenced by Eich’s support of a proposal to deprive his LGBT neighbours of their rights ” – A hermit

        Yes, 52% of voters in 2008 were wrong and should be punished.

        We must segregate society… while we work toward diversity and tolerance.

        Only by stating clearly we can NOT work with anyone who disagrees with us on ANY political topic, and forcibly segregating society can we work toward tolerance and diversity… somehow.

        We seem to still have racial issues in the US, if we enforced racial segregation; would that improve tolerance and diversity for races as well?

        I mean if it’s good in this case, it must be good in general, right?

        Diversity through segregation… even Orwell didn’t come up with one that foolish.

    • The big takeaway from this article is that even though Eich is considered brilliant and plenty of good Mozilla employees tried to support him, the small number of vicious intolerants working and developing for Mozilla were able to sandbag him enough to drive him out.

      Mozilla has a problem and deserves the mass-uninstall if this is the sort of thing that can happen to someone for making a political donation. You’re out of control

      • Jen Larkin says:

        So you didn’t read the post before responding then? He failed in his job at CEO– not because he donated to help revoke a state constitutionally protected right of his customers– but because he refused to take ownership of that issue and handle it properly.

        You didn’t come here to learn. You came here to spout your mouth off ignorantly.

    • Miss Hannah says:

      Great post! It’s just atrocious what is happening to people all over who are persecuted for being persons of integrity. I truly don’t understand all of this hypocrisy. I’m not a 5’11 young stick thin person, can I sue the fashion industry for extreme and blatant prejudice towards billions of people like me? How about the Knickerboker Club ? ridiculous

      • Jen Larkin says:

        I see that you didn’t read the blog post either. Oh and by the way, the fashion industry having skinny healthy models is not equivalent to revoking a constitutionally protected right (under the state constitution) and revoking the civil marriages. You don’t understand the hypocrisy because you’re uninformed, hypocritical, and PROJECTING.

      • Miss Hannah says:

        You must subscribe to relativism. And hypocrisy means “the behavior of people who do things they tell others not to do, behavior that does not agree with what someone claims to feel or believe” Who has the right to tell another person, especially after they have rallied everywhere demanding to have the freedom to live how they want, dare tell another person that they can’t do the same?Pure Hypocrisy! And the analogies show the ridiculousness of it all- and how now, everyone has the right to sue any company, any place with a distinct set of rules that prohibits certain groups of people from their community.

    • Patrick M says:

      The feedback from users is deafening – the firing/forced resignation of Eich is an outrage that has immeasurably harmed Mozilla:

      https://input.mozilla.org/en-US/?date_start=2014-04-04&selected=1d

      47491 messages, most of it negative.

  • bob says:

    you’re missing a very key piece here. Mozilla’s own PR which is completely and totally in-effective and only added to this crisis instead of helping out Brendan. Everyone that works in Mozilla PR SHOULD BE FIRED.

    • davidgerard says:

      bob – I’m a media relations volunteer at Wikimedia. I have been watching this entire slow-motion car crash and picturing all of Mozilla PR getting very drunk indeed. The correct time to start dealing with this was three months ago; the donation having literally hit international news in 2012, and literally everything that has ensued being thus trivially obvious, I can only assume PR were blindsided. Some turds, it’s really hard to get a good shine on. I realise yet again how lucky WMF is with its public faces, and how good they are at not making us cry …

  • John Slater says:

    Great perspective, thanks Mark.

  • LorenzoC says:

    Oh that is good, Mozilla renewed itself by cutting the head of one of the best tech guys over there, just to make the LGBT community happy.
    Why do I feel like puking?

    • Robert says:

      I’m with you. Sigh, I guess this leaves me Google Chrome as the only alternative to Microsoft.

    • Chris Grasso says:

      I’m gay, and I agree with you, LorenzoC. “He’s a hero . . . but he disagrees with me on a political issue that’s completely unrelated to his job, so he can’t work at the company he helped create.” What?!

      • Patrick M says:

        The political correctness of the left is political intolerance.

        When a fundamentally decent human being like Javascript inventor Eich can be felled by such political intolerance, then we have become a less civil society. Most people are appalled at what has happened Even gay rights advocate Andrew Sullivan, who linked to this article, says Surman is ‘full of s***’ for his blame-the-victim attitude that Eich didn’t do enough. Eich was for 16 years enough of an inspiration and fair-minded enough to work with *and* commited to real workplace equality, that even Mr Surman was excited.

        And they threw is ALL away, to please a GayActivistMafia mob that demanded retribution for a political donation wholly unrelated to the mission and goals of Mozilla. Mozilla isn’t human, but it certainly is *WRONG*. The leaders at Mozilla owe Eich an apology for not defending him more strongly against the smear campaign that called him a bigot etc. for a political donation.

        50,000 input messages to Firefox/Mozilla, 95% against what Mozilla and OKStupid and other Eich-bashers did:

        “I’ve uninstalled your product after having it used it for many years. I don’t want to support a company that attacks and punishes someone for his personal view. Your behavior is the definition of intolerance. ”

        That’s because 95% of the supporters, developers, and users out there are *not* leftwing GayActivist extremists. Many if not most have traditional values and/or are Christians, Muslims, Mormons, etc. The political spectrum is broad, and by allowing political division to define who is acceptable, Mozilla has made outcasts not just a few but MOST who participate in the community.

        All those who still think Eich got it coming to him, stop being a hypocrite – and uninstall Javascript and never use it again. Ever. I dare ya.

  • Alter says:

    “Brendan didn’t need to change his mind on Proposition 8 to get out of the crisis of the past week.”
    Really? Because that’s what the mob was demanding of him. Want a link to the organizer’s site?
    I’m sure his apologizing wouldn’t have helped him–they just wanted to hear him beg first.

    Mozilla sure doesn’t look “full of heroes” to any of us right now, I can tell you that.

    • Jen Larkin says:

      He’s stating what employees wanted and why not giving them that was a failure to do his job. Don’t change the subject to make your “point.”

    • Patrick M says:

      “Brendan didn’t need to change his mind on Proposition 8 to get out of the crisis of the past week.”

      “Really? Because that’s what the mob was demanding of him. Want a link to the organizer’s site?”

      This is not the first time that an attack on a personage has been waged with the “recant your sins or suffer career death”. This is the New Inquisition.

      Read Alec Baldwin’s meltdown essay. Alec Baldwin is an egomaniacal jerk, but the man worked for decades in entertainment, with gays all the time no problem, but his using a gay slur as part of his expletive-laden lifestyle made him persona non grata. He was left asking “hey, I supported all the right causes, I love me the ghey. Why me?” at the zero tolerance attitude towards him.

      Or for that matter, case after case of ‘apologies demanded’ …

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/21/tracy-morgan-apologizes-kevin-rogers-gay_n_881440.html

      this read is telling …

      http://verysmartbrothas.com/5-reasons-why-the-gay-mafia-is-so-fierce/comment-page-4/

      … where the punchline is “Isiah Washington”.

  • Albert says:

    Reblogged this on sonofbluerobot.

  • Prop8 Supporter says:

    All that is good but some things have come patently clear here,

    – Despite 46% of voters in Santa Clara County and 52% of voters in California supporting prop 8, Mozilla has a problem with people who support traditional marriage. Where are the high profile Mozilla people openly saying that it is OK to defend traditional marriage and not be called “a bigot” for it?

    – Those of us who work in high tech who also support Prop 8 got the message: do not make your views known or else. Neither you nor Mozilla will change my love for high tech not my support of traditional marriage. I am too old for that.

    – In the long run, this development is very tragic for high tech. Most of Brendan Eich’s legacy is here to stay for everybody else to enjoy. The problem is that the NEXT Brendan Eich, who might be in his/her twenties now, is watching this and getting the message that supporting traditional marriage is anathema in high tech and therefore he/she should find a different line of work more tolerant with his/her views. Talented people is not an exclusive dominion of social liberals.

    • LorenzoC says:

      What high tech? It is anathema everywhere. Think of schools, Universities, Media, Justice, Politics, Marketing, etc.
      In my own country a guy who owns a big company that makes pasta said his company wasn’t showing gays in advertisement because they believed in the “traditional family”. The interview was pushed immediately on all the news with big letters and the guy was forced to make public excuses, then to step back in the company (luckily for him, he owns it along his family).
      You either comply or die.

      • Prop8 Supporter says:

        As somebody who has been making a comfortable living in Silicon Valley for a long time, I was under the impression that our industry was different. This incident is a sad reminder that it is not. We will have to be more careful with what we say and whom we say it.

      • LorenzoC says:

        When you see the thought control is EVERYWHERE how can you expect any place to be a safe heaven? Kids who become software engineers are formed in schools and colleges, watch the same TV and movies, are proposed the same role models, then they must go though years and years of brainwashing, no different than anybody else who ends working in other fields.

        Besides, here we aren’t speaking of “traditionalists”, we are speaking of anything that does not conform the “politically correct”. Yes, you must be careful what you say and not only who you tell, also where you said it. Think for example of these comments. Comments I expect to get censored soon.

    • Luca Vee says:

      You can support traditional marriage by believing in it and keep doing it, you don’t need to forbid others to do what they want with their life. I support gay marriage, that doesn’t mean I campaign to forbid traditional marriage. Your concept of “defense” is an attack to other people rights. LGTB are not trying to pass laws to prevent heterosexuals to marry the opposite gender. Just do what you believe and let others do the same. So Mozilla or anyone else DO NOT have problems with what you support, they do have a problem when you want don’t to grant others your same rights. You all know this too well as it happened before with slavery, women suffrage and interracial marriage, but now you have learned from right wing news to call “fascist” those who simply fight for their rights. Well none of you is going to stop progress, Discrimination is on history wrong side, always has been, always will.

      • Luca Vee says:

        correction “they do have a problem when you don’t want to grant others your same rights.”

      • LorenzoC says:

        Dude, when somebody call you “fascist” he is making fun of you but you are too self-focused to catch it. People like you don’t have any perception of being self-ironic.

        Back to the “same-sex marriage”, the issue is not forbidding two gays to live together either to forbid them to have regulations about duties and rights among themselves and with the society. The issue is about equalizing the “same-sex couple” and marriage, with all the things that come with it. It is like you want a boat to run over rails like a train instead of having it floating on the river nearby. Nobody wants to forbid you to ride your boat on the river and to have regulation about navigation on rivers. Problems come when you want to place your boat on the rails and you want it to be recognized as a train. Which is not.

      • LorenzoC says:

        If we must find some similarity with the current situation is not about Fascism, it is more about the Communist party and the Lenin’s theory of the “democratic centralism”. Given that Mozilla is seen as a branch of the Party.

      • Luca Vee says:

        LorenzoC, once upon a time interracial marriage was seen as a boat on rails too, now it’s normal and so will gay marriage soon enough.

      • LorenzoC says:

        You mean in the USA. You know there is a whole universe out there, don’t you?

        Besides, again, you are mixing apples and bananas. In the ancient times kings had children where ever they went. But they had only one legit wife. So in the law there were two kinds of sons and two kind of “female companions” and they even invented the “morganatic marriage” (see Wikipedia). All this was to regulate duties and rights for different forms of “people being together” while keeping “marriage” on another chapter. Another example is priests, not many know priests make a vow of chastity so they aren’t allowed to have sex. But since it was more symbolic that of practical use and priests had women and children, it was reinforced by the prohibition of marriage, only because of legal issues that came with the sons of priests, their mothers, relatives and descendants about properties and inheritance. Finally, even ancient Greeks, who were famous for their loving for “same-sex relationships”, while recognized that Alexander the Great or major philosophers had “semi-official” male companions, never ever thought to make them “married” as husband & husband or whatever the LGBT community prefer. You had a male companion or more than one if you liked but if you wanted to marry you had to go the usual way. And the wife had completely different status than the others.

        In short, I don’t see the need to force the boat to be recognized as a train when it is not.

      • LorenzoC says:

        Oh, you know Shakespeare, right? Othello is a black general in the city of Venice and he strangles his white wife thinking she betrays with a friend of his. Shakespeare wrote it in 1603 and the story is based on an italian story from Boccaccio written around 1565.

        That to say the “racist” issue with “interracial couples” is another all-american show. Exactly as the one at Mozilla.

      • Prang Ja Za says:

        who are YOU to decide what is boat and train? And yes there is a world besides USA and most European countries have gay marriage. It’s a done deal! Get over it.

        I’d like to reverse role for just a month, and forbid heterosexual to marry and see how much self-irony they will capable of after that!

      • Robert says:

        Luca Vee, LGTB ARE trying to get people fired and unable to support their families, including all Muslims apparently.

      • LorenzoC says:

        The fact that somebody believes that the nature of a boat as a train can be “decided” clearly shows the confusion of ideas we are living in.

        A boat is defined by its own function, that is to float in the water. A train is defined by its own function that is to move on rails. When you place a train in the water it sinks like a stone, when you place a boat on rails it doesn’t move. There are regulations for both sailing on a boat and moving on a train. Of course regulations for trains don’t apply on boats and vice-versa.

        About what is happening in Europe, dude, I live in a sort of craphole indeed and we do have many problems. But I am grateful among all these problems there isn’t the fact that you can be forced out of your workplace because you don’t support “same-sex marriage”. Which would be even fun if it wasn’t real.

      • LorenzoC says:

        I repeat, here we aren’t discussing of gay people being discriminated at Mozilla. We are discussing the fact that a guy was forced to quit his job because he does not support “same-sex marriage”.

        Everybody with two neurons in his/her brain should understand the implications and consequences.

      • matejcepltest says:

        @Prang Ja Za Actually, that is not correct. Most of the European states don’t have same-sex marriages, but some kind of civil law non-marriage statutory relationship. Which is the thing many more evangelical Christians would support. Just don’t call it marriage.

      • LorenzoC says:

        Yes, just not call a train “boat”.

        On a side note, most european countries have a public health care system so every single person gets more or less the same care, regardless his/her status. It makes no difference if you are “married” or you are just in some relationship with somebody and it makes no difference the gender.

        There can be other differences, for example in my own country the legal system is rooted on the roman law and the roman law was rooted in the very concept of “clan” (gens in latin). The status that derives from “marriage”, being ingrained with the “clan” structure with duties and rights, works across the whole legal system and that is why it is much easier to build a separate regulation for “not-married couples” than to negate the root of the whole thing and rebuilt it from scratch.

        But the “equalization” can be stretched only to some point.

      • Jay says:

        You are exactly right. We know who the “real” fascists are, and they congregate at Faux news. The commenters defending Eich have contempt for other people’s views. They want those of us who were upset by the appointment of Eich to shut up. In other words, they want to deny our free speech rights even as they loudly complain that they are in favor of free speech. Similarly, they vociferously denounce as a “boycott” those of us who said we would not use Firefox if Eich remained as CEO, then they go on to say they are going to boycott Mozilla now that he has resigned. They seem to have no clue as to what freedom of speech actually means or how the marketplace of ideas works.

        In any case, most of the defenders of Eich here have no real interest in an open Internet or in Mozilla. Their interest is in advancing the anti-gay movement, a movement that has attempted (with pretty dismal results) boycott after boycott of companies in support of marriage equality. The National Organization for Marriage is still boycotting General Mills and Starbucks! One Million Moms (whose name is clearly hyperbolic) announce a boycott almost every week. But clearly their attempts to pressure companies to do their bidding has been ineffectual. Corporations realize that it is not good for business to treat people unequally or to be associated with those who do.

      • Patrick M says:

        “You can support traditional marriage by believing in it and keep doing it, you don’t need to forbid others to do what they want with their life”

        Nobody was forbidding gays to have a different lifestyle in prop 8, it was about whether you call it ‘the same’ when two gays live together and the traditional one-man one-woman marriage. There are many people who are fine with ‘live an let live’ but are totally offended that we are mistakenly disrupting and changing and harming marriage by redefining it. For the sake of children, we defined marriage as one man and one woman, and through marriage, a contract (not a right per se), we legally bind that responsibility. Marriage cements the raising of children, and the self-centered gay redefinition of it completely ignores that reality. The trampling of people who think differently is a CLEAR signal to traditionalists that there concerns – for traditional values, for children, etc. – are not invalid. Redefining marriage to includes gay couples doesnt end discrimination, just makes a different set of winners and losers.

        So the analogy is wrong. We dont force 18-wheelers and motorcycles to get the same license at the DMV, and its absurd to say that if someone opposed “wheel equality” and forcing the govt to issue the same license to all, that it would be ‘anti-motorcycle bigotry’ to oppose it.
        Even worse, should there be someone on the other side of this ‘wheel equality vs different stripes’ debate … would you say that they couldnt work in tech if they were ‘wrong’ on the issue?

        Absurd.

        “You all know this too well as it happened before with slavery, women suffrage and interracial marriage…” … it happened with the Chinese Communist Red Guards, all this ‘out with the old’ talk … how’d that end?

    • Jen Larkin says:

      Don’t lie about Prop 8 to prove your point. Prop 8 didn’t “uphold traditional marriage;” it revoked a constitutionally protected right.

      And yes, revoking someone’s rights is something that they have the authority to be mad about and take action on in the marketplace.

      Of course, you don’t care about the next Brendan Eich if he’s gay, trans, or a woman, because that’s not possible.

      I’m so done with you hypocrites. You boycott companies that stand for gay rights and when people boycott companies for the opposite, you yell about being oppressed. You’re not. YOU ARE THE ONES IN POWER.

      • Patrick M says:

        Don’t lie about Prop 8 to prove your point. Prop 8 did uphold traditional marriage. That was in the law for millenia. What you are doing is simply defining the issue in your terms, but that’s not the balanced or fair view, thats a biased one. In proponents terms, it was simply to restore the law and marriage as it always was. Marriage is a legal contract and the terms of that contract have never been unlimited, so it ‘revoked’ no right, anymore that outlawing polygamy or first-cousin marriage revokes a ‘right’.

        “they have the authority to be mad about and take action on in the marketplace.”

        And other have the right to express their free speech rights by calling it Fascist Thought Police behavior by trying to get someone fired for being on the other side of a 2008 ballot proposition.

        Andy Sullivan noted that California law forbids discrimination on the basis of political action. So this behavior goes against the spirit if not the letter of California anti-discrimination law.

        Maybe in your world some intolerance and discrimination is just better than other intolerance and discrimination. But its still intolerance and discrimination, and its been a huge black eye to Mozilla to let those voices of intolerance and discrimination take out Eich.

  • segmation says:

    I am going to stay tuned and give Mozilla a second chance. Everyone deserves a second chance, right?

    • Prop8 Supporter says:

      I am too hooked to Firefox to do a seamless switch.

      With that said, if an alternative comes across by a producer of software that is truly inclusive and tolerant, I will make the switch without hesitation.

      I feel I am implicitly supporting a bunch of intolerant thugs at this point just by using Firefox. This cannot last forever. In fact, I smell a very good business opportunity here: “the tolerant web browser” open to all regardless of their background or political/religious beliefs!

      • segmation says:

        You have a good point. Thanks for responding to me. I look forward to seeing what other bloggers think on this issue as well. http://www.segmation.wordpress.com.

      • Alter says:

        Try Pale Moon. It’s based on the Firefox ESR.

      • El-D says:

        Going to Pale Moon would still be using Mozilla software, even if someone else repackaged it. If you’re not going to have the courage of your convictions after saying you’ll stop using Mozilla software, then you might as well just keep using Firefox and stop lying to yourself.

      • halfspin says:

        NOMzilla: one man, one woman, one browser, for life. Sponsored by the Mormon and Catholic Churches. Free to download, but the tithing and weekly collections add up quickly. Users aren’t allowed to control the spawning of child processes.

  • onlinewithzoe says:

    There was so much fury about this that I wonder about all the threads reaching out to businesses and society in general. What was the lesson and who will listen? I do believe there is a better way when the offender is surrounded with a diverse community, is at ease around those whom he fears. I would prefer that he change. I would prefer that change became attractive. Thats a lesson we can all live with.

    As an equality activist, it seems to me that the real win here would have been for Brendan to change, to make amends and become a champion. It would have been good for him, good for queers, good for straights and really good as an example of how to demonstrate change.

    • LorenzoC says:

      What about a lobotomy?

    • Prop8 Supporter says:

      Litmus test for you,

      – Do you oppose the right of two adult consenting sisters to marry?

      – Do you oppose the right of two adult consenting brothers to marry?

      – Do you oppose the right of an adult consenting father and adult consenting son to marry?

      – Do you oppose the right of an adult consenting mother and adult consenting daughter to marry?

      If the answer to any of the above is YES, it begs the question, what’s wrong with you?

      Get this, the challenge is not for Brendan Eich to change his views but rather for people like you to accept that supporting Prop 8 is a perfectly legitimate point of view.

      I am a supporter of Prop 8 after having given the issue of gay marriage a lot of thought. I have no problem with people being gay (or choosing to being gay, whatever the actual status on homosexuality is) or with men cheating on their wives/significant others. I am nobody to judge anybody’s sexuality.

      When it comes to institutionalizing “marriage”, the optimal is one man, one woman without blood ties. Which is not to say that I am opposed to people in their private or public lives choosing freely other type of unions for themselves (including the same sex incestuous ones outlined above).

      • Nicolas says:

        What you frame to be an individual right is about really a collective agreement.

        Now if what is society has been entirely crushed, then yeah, me, me, me, I want, I have the right, you bad, you so bad, love you not, you should be fired

      • halfspin says:

        Comparing people’s marriages to incest and infidelity might make it hard for those people to respect you as their leader. Should they be forced to ignore your contempt?

      • Prop8 Supporter says:

        If you listen to the oral arguments of Prop 8 at the US Supreme Court, the relationship of how allowing gay marriage can lead to allowing incest and polygamy was brought by US Supreme Justice Sonia Sotomayor. In fact, supporters of gay marriage concede also the point,

        http://prospect.org/article/slippery-slope-polygamy-and-incest

        “Opponents of same-sex marriage have long argued that allowing such unions will lead to marriages among more than two people and between adults who are related. They’re right.”

        The lack of intelligent discussion about this topic is one of the tragedies of the Eich bullying.

      • A Hermit says:

        Do you support the right of people to marry someone of another race? If you actively campaigned to make that illegal would people in inter-racial relationships be justified in not wanting to work with you?

        If you gave money to the American Nazi Party would your Jewish co-workers be justified in viewing you with some suspicion?

        the challenge here is for bigots like you to finally accept that you can no longer campaign to deprive your LGBT neighbours of their rights.

      • Andrew says:

        I answer yes to all of the above, and answer yes to “DO you oppose the right of one man, one woman without blood ties” to be married. Because if we let THEM be married, others will want to be married too. It’s a slippery slope to HELL. BAN MARRIAGE

      • Patrick M says:

        To this comment, you got the red herring:
        – Do you support the right of people to marry someone of another race?

        This is no better of an analogy of the real situation than to ask:
        – Do you support the right of people to marry someone of another species?

        The closest analogy to SSM is the *real* historical alternative to one-man one-woman marriage, polygamy
        – Do you support the right of people to marry more than one other person?

        The link to the article that indicates SSM will lead to polygamy as a ‘right’ has validity. But these are all different questions, and using the red herring question to suggest SSM opponents are at the same level as racist bigots is an invalid as suggesting that SSM supporters want to let people marry their dog.

    • Nicolas says:

      The “offender”, look at that. So cute.

    • Patrick M says:

      “As an equality activist, it seems to me that the real win here would have been for Brendan to change” …

      Torquemada always felt better when those in the Inquisition dungeons recanted. Forced confessions were always more helpful to him than dead bodies.

  • segmation says:

    Reblogged this on Outside The Lines and commented:
    A penny for your thoughts?

  • mousebert says:

    Just what was said and done to help and comfort him in his time of need?

  • Judah First says:

    Why should Brendan have to change? Why is change the only thing that is good for everyone? Maybe true diversity means I don’t have to comply with the loudest voice in the media (we all know it’s not the majority, they just shout the best).

    I’m tired of traditionalists being told that their view is unacceptable. We either believe in free speech and freedom of beliefs or we don’t. Demanding that everyone believe gays should marry is just as bad as demanding everyone believe they shouldn’t.

    What personal beliefs Brendan had about this very divided issue in our country should not have had any impact on his position as a CEO. If the COMPANY’s money was being used to support one view or another, now that would be different. Was the $1,000 he sent to support the proposal Mozilla’s money or Eich’s? If it was Eich’s then everyone should shut their flaps and move on.

    This kind of stuff makes me ill.

    • halfspin says:

      Do you believe in free speech or not? Nobody was threatening legal sanctions against Eich or Mozilla. People just expressed their dismay at the decision to elevate him. Free speech includes speech telling traditionalists that their views are unacceptable.

      • Judah First says:

        Agreed. And free speech means letting Eich believe what he wants without vilifying him into a monster. He shouldn’t have had to step down from his position. His job should have nothing to do with his views – just like Mozilla cannot discriminate when they hire. The demand to be politically correct is sickening.

      • ertdfg says:

        And do you support diversity?

        How does diversity get promoted when you also support removing those who disagree, and decide you can’t work with/for anyone who dissents with you on a single topic?

        Is this “Diversity through segregation” now? IF we segregate the races, will that also promote racial diversity?

        If you can’t work with/for someone who disagrees with you; but follows company policy and doesn’t allow their personal views to become business… what would that be except segregation by political views?

        It’s legal free speech, but it’s a terrifying precedent for a society, and entirely detrimental to goals such as diversity or tolerance.

    • Patrick M says:

      “I’m tired of traditionalists being told that their view is unacceptable. We either believe in free speech and freedom of beliefs or we don’t. ”

      Free speech for me but not for thee.

      • Judah First says:

        Free speech for all – not vilification of some. That’s the difference. You are free to have your opinion. I don’t consider libel to be under the jurisdiction of free speech. I don’t vilify you for your beliefs or your speaking of them. I object to people being personally attacked, losing their jobs, etc. based solely on their beliefs.

  • James says:

    While I appreciate your post, it seems that Mozilla needs to re-evaluate what it truly means to hold to values of “equality and freedom of speech.”

    The statement from Mozilla included the comment that “[o]ur culture of openness extends to encouraging staff and community to share their beliefs and opinions in public,” and yet many Mozilla employees vilified Eich for his beliefs and opinions. Even more ironically, it appears Eich was not the one initially responsible for “outing” these beliefs.

    For a company that has “employees with a wide diversity of views,” Mozilla seems strongly committed to silencing those views.

    I address these issue more in depth on this post: http://bowlingwithed.com/2014/04/04/mozilla-champion-of-equality-some-restrictions-apply/

  • […] Mozilla is human (Mark Surman) […]

  • Brendan Eich was fired, in the sense that he got insufficient support. I vote for him to come back.

    And the story is about Brendan Eich, who is an outstanding contributor to Mozilla, and is no longer CEO. If Mozilla as a company can do no better to support one of its founders, to support freedom of speech, to be open to ideas even when it’s hard, then it’s a company I have no interest in. It’s a company that has no soul. Or rather, no spine.

    • Steve says:

      Copy that. I am gay myself and I am appalled by the actions of Mozilla. If Mozilla gets away with this then I am even a bit frightened. I hold far more unpopular opinions that I do conforming ones.

  • Anthea says:

    I don’t know how much of Eich’s firing was due to his donation to Prop 8, but if any part of it was, that confuses me. Prop 8 was passed, but then struck down by a judge. Now, we can question whether certain referendums should even happen, but for a judge to strike down a law voted in by the public is somewhat scary to me. The idea that someone can be punished for an opinion they held five years ago is also scary to me.

    • halfspin says:

      Loving v. Virginia seems relevant here.

      • Anthea says:

        My opinion doesn’t have to do with marriage at all. I don’t think the referendum was a good idea to begin with, but then it passed. For a judge to overturn it seems wrong.

      • halfspin says:

        It’s another example of a state marriage statute being struck down based on the equal protection and due-process clauses of the 14th Amendment in spite of popular support. Granted, it was a statute enacted by the legislature rather than via referendum, because that’s the way laws are generally enacted. Are you arguing that state referenda should be able to override the U.S. Constitution? That’s certainly a point of view.

  • helix400 says:

    “I would argue we’ve also become worse at being Mozilla. We’ve become worse at caring for each other. Worse at holding the space for difference. Worse at working in the open. And worse at creating the space where we all can lead.”

    Correct. This week’s actions were bad enough that I’ve switched away from Mozilla after many loyal years.

    Here’s some ways to repair the damage:

    * Dump Mitchell Baker. She’s setting official Mozilla policy right now, and she’s *horrendous* at it. Her hypocritical views on inclusiveness are 100% in the wrong direction.
    * Restrict Mozilla’s goals to apolitical ones. Focus on technology, not social controversial issues that have nothing to do with technology.
    * Make a new public policy statement explicitly listing various kinds of political and social backgrounds that are welcome. Both in employment and voluntary contributions. State that Mozilla desires that people from wildly different political backgrounds should feel free to work together toward a common technology goal.
    * Express official sadness that the process that drove Eich out wasn’t fair or right. Denounce exclusionary litmus tests, and state that people who insist on litmus tests are not welcome at Firefox.

    But I’m pessimistic this will happen. I think the internal politics within Mozilla are too entrenched now and will work to prevent the items above.

    • jorendorff says:

      “[...] state that people who insist on litmus tests are not welcome at Firefox.”

      That seems completely self-contradictory to me.

      Making policy is hard. Leading a truly diverse group of people is hard. Ten times as hard when you’ve got an organization packed full of activists. We’re difficult people.

      There are Christians at Mozilla. Several of them are among my favorite people in the world. I hope they still feel welcome there today and tomorrow. If they don’t, we’re screwed.

      • helix400 says:

        Let me spell out the honest reason this scares me.

        I’m Mormon. (Disclaimer: I disagreed with my church in that I felt Prop 8 was an internal California matter. Outside states shouldn’t get involved. So I didn’t get involved.) The last week shocked me. I never dreamed I’d see a stunt like what OKCupid pulled on Mozilla. And I was floored how much of the internal and external pressure *agreed* with OKCupid, leading to Eich having to quit.

        The gay marriage debate has evolved very quickly, faster than most people predicted. But this week, OKCupid and Mozilla’s actions took it to the next level, they created new precedence. Starting April 3rd going forward, many organizations now will refuse anyone the CEO position if they’ve held controversial social views and never publicly recanted them. Even if those views are acted on quietly and were never brought into the workplace. *That’s scary.*

        Yesterday was the first night I realized that in 5-10 years, it’s very plausible we’ll see an OKCupid-type letter blocking another entity because that entity’s president is a Mormon. And that Mormon president will have to resign, just like Eich did. Last week, such a thought was sheer paranoia. This week, totally reasonable. And so I started to ponder the kinds of jobs I may be excluded from in the future. All it takes is a poorly conceived “inclusiveness” motto to keep me out. Before yesterday, I’d never considered that my future options would be limited. I always assumed if I was professional and kept my politics and religion out of the office, I’d be fine. Not anymore. Mozilla was the first organization to make me realize that my options in this world are going to become increasingly restricted. And it frustrates me because I’ve been a devout Mozilla backer and contributor since the milestone 5 build in the 90s. Instead of Mozilla fighting for openness and an apolitical community, attitudes like those from Mitchell Baker forced Eich out. I feel betrayed.

        Look at it this way. Can you see Mozilla replacing Eich with a devout Mormon or Catholic next month? I sure can’t. They’re effectively barred. A new precedence has occurred. And Mozilla helped start it.

      • egnt says:

        I’ve talked with a lot of Christians about their concerns regarding gay marriage and our objectives more generally. This kind of hostility is EXACTLY the kind of thing they’re scared of enabling if they support us.

        After today, I can’t honestly argue they’re wrong. So I guess you’re not the only one getting screwed.

      • Prop8 Supporter says:

        helix400,

        Thanks for sharing your story.

        I am a Christian and I have felt that way in Silicon Valley for sometime. I think that I began to realize that it was better to keep things to myself in the aftermath of the of the California Supreme Court ruling that upheld Prop 8 and federal litigation that ensued. All local news (the Chronicle, the Mercury News, ABC7 news, Fox 2, etc) became suddenly part of the pro gay marriage propaganda. At that point, I felt that it was only time before what happened yesterday would come.

        In fact, I have an anecdote of friends who felt the need of quitting Silicon Valley (despite being among the few born and raised here) to go to Texas when they felt their children were going to be indoctrinated at school.

        So it has been sometime coming. What makes this case truly remarkable is that in other cases of pro gay marriage bullying, it was never a high tech icon who had been the target of the pro gay marriage thugs. The assumption was that being a top notch technologist would make somebody immune to this type of attacks because Silicon Valley cares mostly about merit after all. In this case we have a very accomplished fellow on the technical front who in spite of being one of Mozilla’s co-founders and having contributed to high tech in ways that few can dream of, he was fired for a private donation!

        I can only compare this to a situation in which antisemitism became mainstream and both Larry Page and Sergey Brin were to be forced to resign from Google’s leadership because their Jewish status would be too much for some to bear.

      • helix400 says:

        Prop8 Supporter,

        I’m fine with Silicon Valley being heavily liberal. I’m fine if they want to advocate for gay marriages. I’m fine if laws on marriage change. It’s what America is all about. I’ve hit that part of my life where I’m fine working with different groups have different standards for morality. Being Mormon, I’ve learned that when in the minority opinion, just hold your tongue and quietly get along. I’ve worked for employers in which I’m expected to support positions I personally don’t hold. While I’m on the clock, I’m not representing myself but that organization. Off the clock I’m an individual again. That’s fine by me.

        What deeply frustrates me personally is new precedence of what Mozilla helped start.

        Last week I could keep my politics and religion to myself at the workplace. My potential was limitless. I could work alongside atheists or Republicans or pro-choice folks with little worry, because it didn’t matter they were atheists or Republicans or pro-choice.

        But now, anything I say and do in my private time that’s recorded can keep me out of certain jobs. If people find out I’m Mormon, it seems I can be barred from certain high profile positions. Even if I’m flawless at the job and fully supportive of the organization. I type this out and I think I sound crazy. But how is what happened to Eich any different?

        Defenders argue that gay marriage is some unequivocal standard of civil rights. That this morality has been and always will be absolute, and must be enforced as such. Being Mormon, I get a unique perspective here. Our church considers polygamy in Biblical times to have been moral. And that it was moral to practice it again in the 1800s. I’ve repeatedly heard advocates for equality insist that marriage must be between two adults regardless of gender. But then trip over themselves trying to explain why marriage between *three* adults is immoral and should be banned by the government.

        Who’s right? Do we need Mozilla to argue the morality of this? Should the community come to a consensus here? Does it matter?

        It matters because it’s spilled into the arena that affects people like you and me. It matters because Mozilla wants to be a force for good, to be open and inclusive. And in this one instance, they’re not. Mozilla was the first organization to make me realize I can be a model employee and support company ideals with exactness, but due to my religion, my options in this world are going to become increasingly restricted. Let me repeat that. Mozilla was the first organization to make me realize I can be a model employee and support company ideals with exactness, but due to my religion, my options in this world are going to become increasingly restricted. It’s a sad day when it’s *Mozilla* that taught me this lesson. It depresses me. Makes me feel like I’m not wanted. Sure, I could probably be an employee at Mozilla. But do any of you really think a devout Mormon can be a CEO at Mozilla after what just happened? I sure can’t. It’s a deeply hurtful feeling to realize you’re slowly being pushed out of society.

      • Prop8 Supporter says:

        helix400,

        Agreed, this throws Silicon Valley’s “alleged” meritocracy under the bus.

        If this precedent is not reversed forcefully by the Valley’s current elite (and early indication is that only Marc Andreessen has come to his defense) we know that there is a glass ceiling for people like you and me (and in fact hundreds of thousands others) in Silicon Valley because of our beliefs that have nothing to do with our jobs. As you said, we can be model employees and still that will not matter.

      • Steve says:

        Not to mention the entire Islamic world. Mitchell Baker is a hater of the highest order.

      • Delphine says:

        [quote]There are Christians at Mozilla. Several of them are among my favorite people in the world. I hope they still feel welcome there today and tomorrow. If they don’t, we’re screwed.[/quote]

        Let me just tell you this now so you can spare yourself the hurt later. You’re screwed. Your leadership sent a very clear, very loud message that traditional values are no longer welcome at Mozilla. Those Christians you hope feel welcome got the message that they’re next if they dare speak out about their faith and values. Silently, they’re now looking for a more tolerant, safe, and welcoming workplace to provide for their families.

      • ertdfg says:

        How could they feel welcome there now?

        They certainly have to know their religious beliefs remove any chance for a leadership position for them with Mozilla… you think the mob here would allow a Catholic CEO? Laughable to pretend such a thing could be allowed after this incident. You’d be a self-hating lunatic to want to try it.

        They know they’ll be ostracized and limited in promotions based solely for their beliefs, regardless of their actions. If they’re lucky nobody knows that part of their lives and they can live closeted lives hoping nobody finds out their secret that could destroy them socially… driven into secrecy, hiding a large part of who they are, because the mob won’t accept them. Sounds familiar, but I digress.

        But you hope they’ll feel welcome?

        How could that possibly be an outcome that is plausible?

  • Nicolas says:

    Why not split mozilla into PC Mozillas which are irreproachable, following whatever standard, and other organization where swearing and breach is allowed on occasion and should be expected.

    That way, everyone could work in the environment which fits their belief.

    You’d have gay mozilla, neutral mozilla, pro-Israel Mozilla, Muslim Mozilla, gun control Mozilla, and then may be still manage to have plain Mozilla if some are left.

    Of course one would need to match those with the aspect of the personality one intends to impose.

    So you’d have “muslim gay for gun control who support Israel” Mozilla and many other variation which an only accept like minded people.

    This is the way to be inclusive to everyone and cater any other unforeseen stuff that might come not related to the core foundation.

  • Delphine says:

    “Brendan Eich was not fired.”

    Horse crap. Demanding someone’s resignation is firing them. Everyone with a brain knows Mozilla demanded his head. Way to show support and defend the guy you hypocrites claim to support.

    This is not how you demonstrate your inclusiveness. Shame on Mozilla. Who made you the thought police?

    • jorendorff says:

      No, really! I work at Mozilla and as far as I can tell, “Mozilla demanded his head” is flatly wrong. Here’s a Brendan Eich fan telling exactly what happened: https://medium.com/p/7645a4bf8a2

      • Delphine says:

        You guys must think we’re all naive and don’t know how corporate politics work.

        You should take that guys’ point 0 to heart. Sacking Brendan Eich is a severe blow to Mozilla. You have lost your way and may never find it again.

        Mozilla can still fix this by apologizing for sacking Eich and rehiring him under a truly inclusive and tolerant policy that tells the politically correct warriors where to stuff it. I suspect the company won’t do that, because your executive chairwoman is neck deep in the militant LGBT movement to suppress traditional values.

  • Prop8 Supporter says:

    Fresh from Nate Silver. at Intel, 60% of those who donated in the Prop 8 campaign donated in favor of Prop 8 (representing 89% of all the dollars donated by Intel employees in the context of prop 8).

    It might be because Intel generally has smarter employees than the rest of Silicon Valley companies (and that would include Google, Apple or Facebook and sure enough, Mozilla) that they see things more clearly than said companies’ leadership or their employees.

    As to Intel employees being smarter, it has to do with the difficulty of producing the product that Intel produces, from a pure IQ point of view, compared with the difficulty of producing what the other companies produce. Mozilla employees might be goofier or “cooler” than Intel’s but I would bet $1000 that the average IQ of the engineers working at Intel is higher than the average IQ of the engineers working at Mozilla, Apple, Google or Facebook!

    • halfspin says:

      Or maybe it has something to do with Intel’s considerable presence in Utah. Nah, I’m sure it’s just their higher IQs, as demonstrated by your superb and unassailable reasoning skills.

      • Prop8 Supporter says:

        You should try to compare -both in terms of training and talent- what it takes to come up with,

        1- A web browser with limited functionality

        2- A working microprocessor whose functionality compares to an eight core i7 in the same way the web browser of limited functionality you designed in 1- compares to the latest version of firefox

        For 1-, a solo class at udacity will do it. For 2-, even if you graduate with a MSEE degree from Stanford or UC Berkeley you are likely to fail (the key here is “working” not some simulated VHDL circuit).

  • jorendorff says:

    > And you certainly saw it this past week, as many calm and reasonable people said “Brendan, I want you to lead Mozilla. But I also want you to feel my pain.”

    That’s not what I heard. Calm and reasonable, yes. But these voices were mainly addressed to each other, not to Brendan. They were really about whether it can possibly be justified to be OK with a Prop 8 supporter leading Mozilla.

    > Brendan didn’t need to change his mind on Proposition 8 to get out of the crisis of the past week.

    …That’s not the impression I got either.

    • Luca Vee says:

      Can I be a CEO of a corporation based on strong conservative christian values and expect to keep my job when they find out I donated to promote atheism and pro-choice causes? There you have your hypocrisy free reality.

      • matejcepltest says:

        Is Mozilla an organization based on strong pro-gay values? Does it mean that when I support Mozilla (so far I do) I do support same-sex marriage? I would love to know that soon, so I can look for another browser and phone in case the answer is affirmative.

      • Luca Vee says:

        Google is even more “pro-gay” than Mozilla and so is Apple, now good luck to find a phone that doesn’t use Android or IOS, give it up already, gay marriage is law of the land in most 1st world countries. It has happened, the sooner you realized it, the sooner you can start trolling about something else.

      • matejcepltest says:

        @Luca Vee Of course, I don’t expect you to be bothered by the mere facts, but the same-sex marriage (i.e., that there would be just one institution both for gays and straight) is minority even in Europe I believe. Most European countries have special institute for gays (or straight for whom the normal marriage would feel to much religious, which was the reason why these non-marriages were originally instituted).

  • David Hart says:

    The $1,000 that Eich gave to support Prop 8 was used to fund vile and hateful media campaigns and enshrine discrimination into the Constitution of the State of California. Prop 8 obviously harmed many people in other more material ways; the stories abound. Also in the public record is a $1,000 donation to Pat Buchanan, a cooky TV evangelist (the one infamous for claiming that the presence of gay people brings the wrath of God onto innocents in the form of natural disasters) and $1,000s more to other similarly-minded politicians and lawmakers. How these facts seemed immaterial at CEO-selection-time in the boardroom is astounding. If the Mozilla board had not fucked up, Eich’s technical leadership and mentorship would still be active today, so in this respect his departure is sad. I however will not be shedding any tears that this man potentially now has less money and less influence to spread his bigoted ideas, wherever and however ‘privately’ he chooses to spread them.

    • halfspin says:

      You are confusing Pat Buchanan with Pat Robertson. They are both conservative Republican kooks, but different sorts of kooks.

      • David Hart says:

        Heh, I wondered if anyone would catch that error (Pat Buchanan / Pat Roberson mixup) after I re-read my post. I could merely change the word ‘evangelist’ to ‘pundit’ and everything remains just as true.

    • Stan Rider says:

      Bleah, I still uninstalled Firefox from all the PCs I own. I know that’s merely a gesture and it will make no difference, but I feel great about it. Reading posts like yours makes me feel even better that I don’t use their browser. Just for your info: I am fairly certain that Brendan Eich has more money than you, and that he’s able to make even more money with which to do as he wishes – after all, he wrote JavaScript and co-founded Nestcape and Mozzilla. What have YOU achieved?

  • Willitgetbetter says:

    So? Will you make sure rust has a future, Google doesn’t completely ruin WebRTC, Servo happens (C++ stinks), asm.js prevails, es6 thrives, spidermonkey replaced with something superior to it and V8 (in rust of course), and that FFOS becomes a glorious platform?

    Will you?

    Will anyone at Mozilla?

    Eich seemed like the perfect choice to lead us to this future. Now, by proving its “humanity”, Mozilla seems like it will decay like any other lost soul with a dishevelled sense of purpose.

  • David Hart says:

    Willitgetbetter’s views seem spot-on, with the possible exception of the types of leadership assumed necessary for a bright future for Mozilla.

    Has general top-heaviness been part of the problem? For example, how does Mozilla compare with Canonical or Apache Foundation or Linux Foundation or other broadly-based companies and organizations that also value an open web? How does executive pay compare? How does board composition compare? What has been the pattern of encouraging the company’s drive and vision to come from its broader base of developers? These are the types of questions I believe that all Mozillians should be asking, rather than taking only a nose-to-the-grindstone approach or looking to existing leadership for all of the answers.

  • Ramsees says:

    You delivered the head of one of your most valuable elements to an irate crowd in a silver plate, you people at Mozilla are nothing but a bunch of cowards worried to much about politics an not about those who made you who you are, and I kid you not, everytime I see the Firefox logo I feel disgusted. Screw Mozilla, Lets see if that irate crowd can do the half of what Eich did for you. Mozilla doesn’t deserve my sympathy.

    • Luca Vee says:

      Yeah Firefox will now go all the way downhill, just like all the rest of the companies that support equality: Google, Starbucks, etc… Get out of the web already, your discriminatory bigot kind is history.

      • Willitgetbetter says:

        Firefox isn’t a company; but yes, without the leadership to give progress to the technologies needed for a better open web: Mozilla will go down hill. Google may support equality all it wants, but it also supports equally and intrusively databasing the whole world for its ad revenue based goals.

      • ertdfg says:

        SO in your view asking someone to work with anyone who they disagree with on a single topic is horrific and terrible?

        Ok, so you’re for segregation of society… and the goal of “diversity” of course.

        Because if anything leads to tolerance, understanding, and diversity; it’s forced segregation of people to keep the different sides apart…

        Are you really this obtuse?

      • Stan Rider says:

        Listen, stupid. There is a difference between supporting a particular set of beliefs and ideology, and actually demonizing others for not doing the same. Google supports gays and gay marriage, but doesn’t sack employees who have personal values which differ from its corporate ones. See the difference?

        And yeah, Mozilla will go downhill. Why? Because it takes all sorts of people, with all sorts of value-bases, to build something as great as Mozilla claims that it wants to build. Mozilla has just determined that it wants only a particular kind of people to work for it. It forgot that others can do the same – for example, I only want to use products which are not made by companies which discriminate against individuals because of their privately held convictions. So I uninstalled all Mozilla products from my PCs. See how it works?

    • LorenzoC says:

      Not an irate crowd, an irate bunch.
      The problem is Mozillians (people inside Mozilla) sympathize with that bunch and they don’t sympathize with the silent majority of dumbasses like me. So while I would dismiss the irate bunch shrugging my shoulders, for Mozilla that was a big deal.

      • Stan Rider says:

        You’re right. I went on Mozilla’s FB page after they pushed Eich out, and read the avalanche of comments from pissed off people. We’re the crowd, and we are using Firefox no more, no more …

  • […] colleague Stephen Shankland. Mozilla’s Mark Surman, who describes Eich as one of his heroes, reflected that his former colleague did not need to backtrack on Prop. 8 but wrote that the failure to […]

  • […] colleague Stephen Shankland. Mozilla’s Mark Surman, who describes Eich as one of his heroes, reflected that his former colleague did not need to backtrack on Prop. 8 but wrote that the failure to […]

  • […] colleague Stephen Shankland. Mozilla’s Mark Surman, who describes Eich as one of his heroes, reflected that his former colleague did not need to backtrack on Prop. 8 but wrote that the failure to […]

  • Wayne says:

    Bredan?

    You got Freshly Pressed, and you ask BRENDAN to empathize with those who got hurt, then PLEASE, spell his name correctly.

    Second, YOU sympathize with someone experiencing a different pain than you feel, you empathize when you have experienced that pain.

    Third, he was forced to resign, THAT IS FIRED. Evidently you have not been ‘outsourced’ often enough to empathize with those who have.

    Fourth, Mozilla is not human, it is an organization corrupted by intolerance.

    Oh well, congratulations on being Freshly Pressed, that shows you got something right.

    Wayne
    Luvsiesous.com

  • Scott Taylor says:

    Mozilla’s greatest flaw was it’s inability to stand behind Brendan.
    1. Employees should not be going to Twitter, to talk bad about their CEO, that is bad business ethics.
    2. These employees who violated business ethics were neither fired nor disciplined.
    3. The official Mozilla response has been to white wash the incident and act like they were on Brendan side (which they weren’t), and reinforce their core values, which mean nothing at this point because the action of employees publicly shaming Brendan, and the rest of Mozilla hanging him out to dry. As far as I can tell, there was no, “We stand behind Brendan’s free speech because we are inclusive”.
    4. Mozilla has not apologized for this hypocrisy.
    5. Everyone is writing as though Brendan was murdered, and is buried now. Where is your empathy? He is a living being whom I am sure you have his phone number. Where is the public apology to Brendan, where is the reaching out to him?

    *This comment was written using Google Chrome*

    • Luca Vee says:

      Ah! So you can fire someone for disagreeing with CEO but not the other way around. Employees should not use twitter to express their freedom of speech? As usual freedom of speech is subjective with people like you. And where was your outrage when Martin Bashir was forced to resign MSNBC because he expressed his views on Palin? You are all liars! Your outrage is not about Eich freedom of speech, is because LGBT community has now a voice which is louder of conservatives right wing chirstian white males.

      • Willitgetbetter says:

        I don’t care about Martian Bashir or Sarah Palin. I don’t care about conservative right wing agendas or liberal left wing ones. I don’t care about MSNBC, FOX, and much less an evil data collecting organization like twitter. All three are proud supporters of evil proprietary software, and a closed web. I care about the inhibting effect on technologies that are needed for a truly open web. No, the employees shouldn’t have their right to express their opinion taken away, nor be penalized for expressing said opinion. But this wasn’t an opinion, this was a social peer pressuring analogous to the fear tactics used by conservative right wing agendas of the past. All towards a man, who has never shown, that he cannot separate his personal views and the interests of technologies needed for an open web that can move away from the 70s and into the future.

        Thanks to this, Google will monopolize the techology that affects our daily lives, and we will not have a clue how it works (it will be completely proprietary).

        But I guess that’s fine for most people who like being ignorant.

      • Scott Taylor says:

        So I should be able to write on my Facebook or Twitter, something bad about my boss and owner of my job and why he should just quit? Sure, I can, free speech, by when I get fired, I shouldn’t be surprised. I violated common sense business ethics. It’s called hierarchy and respect and it exist in the market place for a reason, to avoid this kind of incident, which in the end hurt the company.

        Your so quick to jump to conclusions that you overlooked your own double mindedness, your so quick to jump on the bashing anyone who opposes the view of the Gaystopo. What makes you think I care about Sarah Palin or Martin Bashir, I don’t watch MSNBC or listen to Sarah Palin, and Martin Bashir’s existence to me existed my memory as quickly as it entered it. Who is labeling now? Do you even know my political affiliation?

        I refuse to fall for this BS notion that somehow being once oppressed, now liberated equals some kind higher morality. It doesn’t, there are few LGBT out there willing to pass necessary critique on their own kind. The only one I saw this round was Andrew Sullivan and a private citizen. Just because someone is gay, doesn’t make it okay to be parading around the streets naked. Just because someone is gay, doesn’t make it okay to throw feces at Christians in Germany. Just because someone is gay, doesn’t make it okay to disrespect the neighbors of your club in Manhattan. Just because someone is gay, doesn’t make it okay to bring explicit sexual affection into the public, and just because someone is gay doesn’t make it okay to violate business ethics.

      • ertdfg says:

        And in your view any political view should get a CEO fired, but never anyone else?

        Or is it only non-liberal views that should result in a firing?

        I’ll warn you now that I do not find “BUT it’s OK when I DO IT” as the high moral ground you seem to believe it to be.

        Either Eich’s termination makes sense, AND the termination of all the employees who posted tweets/etc against him would also make sense…

        OR Eich’s termination was a bad play, and it would be a bad play to fire others for personal political views that don’t impact them doing their job.

        IF Eich had issues in his job in working with SSM benefits or LGBT employees; that would be a different story; but he didn’t… and nobody cares.

        He committed a thought crime, and had a “bad” political view, so he had to go… but “good” political views don’t have to go?

        Would it surprise you to find out about half the country has a different view from you on which views are “good” and “bad”?

  • johnsmith223 says:

    This is precisely why I publish my personal opinions pseudonymously. In fact, I firewall those opinions through the use of diverse pseudonyms. My donations to causes are all similarly anonymous. No one needs this kind of grief.

  • Jeremy amrith lay says:

    since i have followed your blog please follow mine at http://www.jeremyamrithlay.wordpress.com as i hv enterd for a blogging competition and desperately need followers

  • May Sams says:

    Empathy? Empathy? Hello? Oh man if I could fire someone or ask someone to step down because they lacked empathy I think I’d be… a hypocrite?

  • […] sostiene “l’umanità” dimostrata dall’azienda “nel bene e nel male” (Commonspace). “Conservatori-chi?” Ma resta una domanda: nell’industria della tecnologia e […]

  • […] comunità LGBT esulta e riaccende i browser, mentre il direttore esecutivo di Mozilla sostiene “l’umanità” dimostrata dall’azienda “nel bene e nel male”. Ma resta una domanda: […]

  • Very nice to read this and to see that Mozilla are dusting themselves off before getting back to what they know best. Thank you for a very interesting read.

  • […] di Mozilla sostiene “l’umanità” dimostrata dall’azienda “nel bene e nel male” (Commonspace). “Conservatori-chi?” Ma resta una domanda: nell’industria della tecnologia e pure nella […]

  • Ordan says:

    This incident with your CEO, your Australis chrome similiar ui plans, the ads in the new tabs plans, the more telemetry stuff plans really has made me switch browsers.

    I will no longer use a browser of an organization which constantly falls into such terrible holes like Mozilla is doing. Opera is avoiding it, Google is avoiding it, hell, even Microsoft and Apple are not making that grave mistakes like your organization does constantly.

    If you ever get professional again and develop again for power users instead of Google Chrome users, send me a mail. Until that, i will recommend all people i know and who trust in my computer skills to switch over to Seamonkey and Pale Moon.

    Because if it is not for the CEO incident then it is all about the other troublesome happenings at Mozilla which makes me unable to recommend your browser anymore.

    For now i am done with you!
    Very disappointed.

  • Ordan says:

    May i give you a last recommendation:

    Because you are also so independent of Google which is non only money wise but instead reflects also on your latest design and anti customization issues you should take this as a chance to drop Firefox OS and all the other money wasting projects, get rid of Google and make a customizable browser again, not with less customization options like Australis features, but instead with more.

    This you should do. Not trying to grow larger and larger like Google, but instead shrink yourself healthy again.

    Focus on what you always have been focused so far: customization and developing for the users in the first place.

    If you are unwilling or can not do that anymore you will find out that you will lose quite a lot percentage of your market share soon!

    It is time that you get again a view for the reality. Stop dreaming Mozilla!

    • Ordan says:

      Of course i meant dependent and not independent, sorry for writing another time.

      Anyway, i am sure you get my points.

      No more Mozilla before you focus again on what you have focused until you have reached Version 4!

    • Delphine says:

      Oh, they’ll be shrinking alright, but it won’t be to something healthy. It will be a morally diseased shadow of its former self populated by groupthinkers and aggressively militant outliers of society.

      The rest of the world should be appalled at this.

  • And like all humans and human organizations, when it makes a mistake, it expresses contrition and makes amends. We await Mozilla’s expression of contrition.

  • Valentine Michael Smith says:

    On the contrary, Mozilla is not human. It has become inhuman in the extreme. Mozilla is the new poster boy for liberal fascism run amok.

    Mr. Surman, if you have a shred of honor or decency, you will terminate your relationship with Mozilla immediately. I’m terminating mine.

  • aletifer says:

    I gotta say, I find it very difficult to get offended about any of this.

  • OpposingHypocrites says:

    Tolerate gay marriage? what about tolerating the people that oppose gay marriage? What hypocrites!

  • Ordan says:

    Why are people complaining so much about the CEO – the other mistakes including the Chrome similar Australis which removes customization out of Firefox because in favor of a Google like Interface is much worse!

    Please people, stop quitting Firefox for only political reasons, if you do – make a real valuable decision!

  • Sharon says:

    You need to make a choice – be a company who serves everyone, or build an enclosed echo chamber. By publically hanging Brenden Eich out to dry, Mozilla showed intolerance of my Christian values. Mr. Eich did try to reach out on his blog. It was not enough for Mozilla and some vocal stakeholders. I uninstalled Firefox of my own thought, not as part of a mob. What we saw was a public lynching. It terrifies me.

    • RxCowboy says:

      I uninstalled both Firefox and Thunderbird.

    • RxCowboy says:

      Mozilla probably should have paid attention to what happened with the Chic Fil A boycott… and the long lines at CFA during the boycott. It backfired big time. My guess is that Eich’s defenestration will backfire on Mozilla.

      • Jay says:

        You obviously either misinformed or willfully trying to misinform others. It is true that the initial response to the Chik-fil-A boycott was an outpouring of support for the chicken franchise. But it effectively stalled plans for an expansion of the company beyond the South, and several stores were evicted from college campuses. Dan Cathy announced that Chik-fil-A’s Winshape Foundation would cease donating to anti-gay groups, which was the entire goal of those who boycotted Chik-Fil-A. From the release of tax filings from 2012, it is clear that Cathy kept his word. Cathy also announced that he would no longer speak about the issue of same-sex marriage. In other words, the Chik-fil-A boycott was very successful.

      • RxCowboy says:

        To Jay: Hurray! Free speech has been thwarted and tolerance has won out by silencing a heretic!

        But you haven’t changed Dan Cathy. He is still who he is. If you really want to change him Big Brother is going to have to work harder. Time to call the Thought Police!

        Chic Fil A’s bottom line has *improved*.

      • Sharon says:

        Chic Fil A is now bigger than KFC. I’m in the food industry (farmer) and just read it from two different food industry sources yesterday. It shows that the economic terrorism tactics of the anti-tolerant wing of the gay-rights movement have a way of biting them back – as long as those who abhor the loss of our free speech are willing to stand up to these bullies.

  • […] Mark Surman. Mark heads up our Foundation side of things (if you don’t know quite what I am referring to, see my primary point I’m making e.g. we are a hybrid of ‘things’ and typical categories fall short). […]

  • RxCowboy says:

    I think the treatment of Eich is pretty good evidence that you’ve become worse about caring for each other.

    • RxCowboy says:

      Sauce for the goose is also sauce for the gander. I think Mozilla is about to learning this lesson. #boycottmozilla #dumpfirefox

  • […] especially given the craven response of so many to it (yes, Frank, you buried the lede). Read this astonishing post from Mozilla’s Mark Surman. Eich may have been “one of the most inspiring humans that I have […]

  • Cas Ann says:

    “We’ve become worse at caring for each other. Worse at holding the space for difference. ” Yes, that’s obvious. Ironies abound. Well, a victory for the thought police, another scalp. And as many have observed, a loss of a brilliant CEO. I hope that for its’ fascist bent, Mozilla goes the way of the dinosaur.

  • ertdfg says:

    For your two points:

    1) Horse excrement… he didn’t fall off that cliff while the people who hated him were standing behind him. He was pushed. Lets not pretend otherwise… it’s just specious and silly.

    2) The goal of the company is open, tolerant and diverse web usage for everyone… *(who is a liberal and toes the party line on all policy at all times)

    I’m reminded of the line from the Blues Brothers “We have both kinds of music, Country AND Western”. You’re tolerant of all kinds of liberal views… what else could anyone want, right?

    You’re a parody of a joke from years ago; and you’re still trying to keep to that defense? Get back to basics when you’ve just openly violated your core claim of who you are? Given we now know who you are, who would trust your claim?

    Your company has shown you have NO tolerance for a large portion of this country, the world, and most major religions and their viewpoints; and you WILL attack them given any opportunity.

    I don’t care if you’re CEO is pro-gay or anti-gay or indifferent. I won’t support segregation in the name of diversity… what rational person could?

    Which is sad, I really preferred the Firefox NoScript plug-in to the alternatives; but I’m learning new web browsers as I’ve decided I will let my web browser provider think whatever they want, so long as they don’t support fascist segregation of ideas… you don’t meet that minimalist criteria.

  • richmx2 says:

    What difference does it make whether one supports or doesn’t same-sex marriage. All this is about is whether or not a foundation that owns a company (Mozilla’s corporate structure is rather unique in that) … or the shareholders of any company, have the right to expect an employee who is put in a leadership position to adhere to the corporate (or, rather foundational) philosophy. Of course, they do… and whether Brendan Eich is a brilliant tekkie is irrelevant to whether or not he is a good CEO. It’s a different skill set.

  • Lous7 says:

    Good to see Eich gone, but fuckings for your Chrome clone with Australis!

  • Jay says:

    The appalling anti-gay comments on this board show precisely who the real thugs are. They are not gay people and those who support equal rights for all. They are the tired old rightwingers who lie and campaign to deny rights to others, but have somehow convinced themselves that they are the victims. Eich stepped down because it became obvious that he had lost the confidence of Mozilla world.

    • Concerned Observer says:

      Just like you think anyone who doesn’t agree with you should be deprived of a livelihood? Or is it only bad when it happens to someone you feel a connection to, not when it is a body you support doing it?

  • Joe says:

    Bye bye Mozilla, nice to know you, won’t miss you. As a supporter of marriage equality, I still don’t know repressive tactics and authoritarian style thought control to be any more appealing, regardless of who they are used against. Coming from a nation where freedom of speech simply doesn’t exist, for people to be attacked and beat down into a corner by an internet lynch mob until they are forced to resign from their own livelihood, that’s not something I can support.
    It goes way beyond the pale and I hope that maybe the people at Mozilla who jumped on Eich specifically and solely because of a political donation he made privately that had nothing to do with the company, will learn that tolerance means that you learn to deal with those you agree with as well as those you DON’T agree with.

    I have family and friends with wildly varying political views, some of them still don’t support gay marriage. Ostracizing and condemning them is not the way to get them to come around and it surely won’t work with Eich either. Do people honestly believe he’ll be anymore likely to support gay rights after the treatment he has received? Should he branded with a scarlet letter now for life?

    Should the rest of the millions of people who supported Prop 8 or any political cause that their particular boss disagrees with be forced to do a mea culpa and then walk the plank in essence? Where exactly does this all end?

  • Right here, if you wish, is what it would look like if progressives win… http://johnwilsonbach.com/2014/04/03/life-as-a-progressive/

  • If there are people that have the right to support the gay movement, it is just fair to give other people the right to disagree. There will be always ideological differences among people and to judge the capabilities of a CEO because of sexual preferences is not correct.

    I can just see that the gay community is doing to other people the same that was (or is still being done) to them: To Judge, criticize and demote because of Sexual Preferences (As clearly the expelled CEO was heterosexual oriented).

    I do not agree with the Brendan stepping out as CEO. I know Mozilla is in a difficult position, but the reason that Hampton Catlin exposed should have been a quarrel between themselves and not involving Mozilla Foundation.

    • Jen Larkin says:

      Actually, Mozilla is the rare case where it does matter because the CEO’s job is to move the community forward– which doesn’t happen if parts of the community have their rights REVOKED because of him and people who acted the way that he did.

      The gay community isn’t revoking anyone’s rights by boycotting a business in the marketplace and pressuring someone to resign. Prop 8 revoked their state constitutionally protected right to same-sex marriage.

      In the end, Eich’s was not fit to be CEO because of his behavior in response to the backlash, as stated in the post. You probably should have read it before commenting.

      • Concerned Observer says:

        Can’t agree. Caitlin actually demanded that he be removed from “any day to day position with Mozilla” to end the boycott. Strangely he’s now saying how sad he is to hear that Eich stepped down (despite demanding just that for days, and even giving 5 reasons for why he should) saying he didn’t even want him to “recant” on gay marriage, but to apologize for unintended consequences of the law – apparently specifically on immigration, and the fact that Caitlin’s partner couldn’t get a green card the SCOTUS dismissed the appeal. This is much more measured and restrained from his earlier posts. I actually suspect it started over a) shock that Eich wasn’t pro-gay marriage (too many just think the tech world is all “progressive”) and b) his own sense of hurt, but feelings and the immigration issues of the US (although you could also say that the fault lies with the Federal Authorities which could have given the same rights to gay civil unions – which were legal under Proposition 8 – as they gave to marriage). After that, I suspect he got swept up in the campaign and the support they were getting and didn’t quite realize that they were, actually, going to force Eich out.

        Now, how should Eich have handled it? Caitlin’s original boycott said this, “We will continue our boycott until Brendan Eich is completely removed from any day to day activities at Mozilla”. That is calling for him to be fired, not returned to CTO, not to make a small “empathy – I feel your pain” comment (he actually did this – Caitlin seems to think it should have been explicitly about the immigration issue, but this was really his personal loss with Proposition 8, and not likely to be one of the major reasons why people opposed it). Should he have lied, and said he personally supported gay marriage? Even Caitlin now says he didn’t want this. The issue here isn’t so much about Mozilla, but the barrage of publicity, which Mozilla didn’t need when it’s in negotiations with Google (who had a few employees donate to the Proposition 8 campaign, look it up). It was quite clear that it wasn’t going to stop until Eich stepped down.

        You actually ARE threatening rights by doing this. Eich didn’t campaign for Proposition 8 and be the public face of it, like Anita Bryant did back in the ’70’s. He didn’t bankroll the whole thing. He made a comparatively modest $1000 donation – may have paid for a newspaper spread, or a couple of seconds of TV airtime). But now, because of it, and a couple of minor donations to a couple of former political candidates on the more conservative side of the spectrum (but still mainstream, not extremists), he loses his job, and has to leave a company he helped found. What does this say? You have the right to “free speech” but you won’t be able to work and earn a living? In going after Eich, you’ve all set the bar too low in terms of going after a company or individual. There will be repercussions to all this.

      • Stan Rider says:

        “In the end, Eich’s was not fit to be CEO because of his behavior…” Err … Eich co-founded Mozilla …

  • Not using Firefox anymore. You have lost all originality and all reason! Seamonkey and Pale Moon for the win :)

  • Hello. I am member of Mozilla’s development team and these postings here lately force me now to react. Let me first clarify one thing. I do that because someone has finally to speak out some things… Things which should clearly brought out to the public….

    First, the incident about our short time CEO Eich….. many of us do NOT agree with what has happened. There has been a massive amount of pressure inside and outside of Mozilla which brought him to resign from his post.

    About the ads in the new tab page… Our reasoning for this is to make us more independent moneywise and influence wise from Google Inc. – the problem is, even with that we still are unable to break free of Google in so many ways sadly!

    About Australis and the so called chrome similarity: In business you have to make some compromise to get your income, there are quite a lot dependencies which often stand in the way what you can do or not do!

    BUT: I really would lie if i would now say that there would be no suggestions/recommendation/expectancies coming from the side of Google Inc towards us in terms of general feature request or UI features. Which leads to Australis. I can say, without Google Australis would be a hell of more customizable as it is as end result. Again.. many do not agree with Google’s influence and would like to see the relationship between Google Inc. and Mozilla terminated!

    And last but not least towards this political boycott… Eich’s departure is NOT the whole sickness, it is only part of the symptoms which are plaguing Mozilla. Mozilla as it is right now is torn into half. One half often does not like what the other half is planning. This and the massive amount of Third Party organization influence since a long time is leading to things like that which are damaging in a massive way Mozilla’s reputation!

    In the end many of us as i said do not agree with most of the above mentioned problems, the reason nobody is complaing is because it is like in every other business… criticize the leaders and you are history!

    If you really feel the need for a boycott… Do it against Australis, do it against Google’s influence and the influence of the ads industry into Mozilla! Stay with Firefox 28 instead of 29 or stay with Seamonkey. Drop your Google Mail, stop use Google search, write Google a message in their groups that you dislike their direct influence in many of Mozilla’s business/developement decisions! We have to get independent again!

    Some adresses where you can write:

    https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/mozilla.governance

    https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/firefox-dev

    Or feel free to write your protest to #mozilla or #firefox over Twitter or contact people like Mitchell Baker.

    Again… boycotting because of political reasons changes NOTHING – not when the sickness which plagues the construct goes much more deeper!
    Don’t forget with enough support we can change nearly everything! Help us get healthy again, help us break free of limitations we are suffering right now!

    After all we are Mozilla – Doing good is part of our code!
    And we still have not stopped to be the good guys!

    With kind regards!

    • Sharon says:

      Hi, Darn

      Unfortunately, when Mozilla forced Eich out because of a small contribution to a political contribution – made six years ago – for a cause that was approved by 52% of the population of California, you, as in a corporate “you” did cease to be the “good guys.” You want to work for a company like that? Mozilla made their choice to discriminate against Eich because of his political/religious beliefs – it’s their right. Now, they – and you – live with the consequences.

    • Stan Rider says:

      Thank you for taking the trouble to write here, Darn. Unfortunately, your post, though obviously sincere, has not convinced me to re-install the Mozilla products. We (the millions who have uninstalled the Moz products) are not motivated by political reasons, that’s a disingenuous way to express yourself. It was the fact that an organization such as yours, which unashamedly yabs on about ‘diversity’ and ‘tolerance’ pushed it’s very co-founder to resign.

      What will convince me to use Moz products again is a public apology from Mozilla for pushing Eich out, and a clear statement that it respects the rights of ALL it’s employees to hold private convictions and lives, regardless of whom these may ‘offend’. This has to be substantiated by a publicly made invitation for Eich to again take the leadership of the organization. Until this happens, I can assure you that I, for one, will never, EVER, use Mozilla products, if I can help it.

      • Stan Rider says:

        Oh, and forgot to ask a couple of questions: If it was to be offered to you, will you join Eich’s new team of developers who will create an entirely new browser? And, why are you still with Mozilla when clearly it will disappear up its own proverbial?

  • Jen Larkin says:

    I’m sorry that people couldn’t be bothered to read the post before telling you that you’re wrong and Mozilla should be reprimanded for Eich’s resignation because the people demanding that are pro-Prop 8.

    The marketplace acted through free speech and as much as they yell about the free market and free speech, every time the market doesn’t give them their way or someone uses free speech to stand up to them, they cry oppression, violation of the free market, and violation of free speech.

    They are projecting hypocrites.

    Eich failed to be a good CEO in the short time that he was CEO. Mozilla was put in a very vulnerable position by appointing him. After the appointment the only two options were a boycott from people who stand up for rights and a boycott from people who oppose them.

    I would have preferred if he had stepped back to the role of CTO and remained on the board. That would have been the best move for Mozilla. Sadly, I’m not sure this is recoverable anymore but I hope it is.

    Hugs for all the Mozillians.

    • Concerned Observer says:

      Caitlin said this in his open letter, “We will continue our boycott until Brendan Eich is completely removed from any day to day activities at Mozilla”. Sounds like they wanted him fired doesn’t it? Certainly many of the other campaigners out there wouldn’t have stopped if he went back to CTO – I mean they’d be helping to pay the salary of a “bigot” wouldn’t they! Once this went viral, OKCupid and the Media got involved, it was really the end. Mozilla would have had to tough it out for a couple of months, and with the Google negotiations coming up, there just wasn’t the time. This has nothing to do with Eich’s capacity as a CEO (he was only in the role for a few days), but the idea that a section of the community have that no one with his views is acceptable – witness the endless comparisons of him to neo-nazis, the KKK, slavery, and all sorts of other causes considered an anathema.

    • Stan Rider says:

      “The marketplace acted through free speech …” What a dumb statement! Marketplaces don’t ‘react’ simply through free speech. They react through consumer behavior. So watch consumers of Moz products behave by going with another product. Personally, I am getting quite fond of Comodo Dragon, and actually find that it addresses my needs better than Firefox. But never mind – there will be winners all round, anyway. Mozilla will have three to five percent of the market, and the rest of us will use something that is not produced by bigots.

  • […] the craven, mealy-mouthed response of so many to it (yes, Frank, you buried the lede). Read this astonishing post from Mozilla’s Mark Surman. Eich may have been “one of the most inspiring humans that I have […]

  • ghost2nemo says:

    can’t see the “REpost” button!
    ~

  • Lem says:

    If the ‘wrong kind’ of people (prop-8) demand something… Eichman never had a chance.

  • Max Baum says:

    Wondering how you MOzilla guys want to explain that here… Was posted on boards, Facebook and Twitter…
    Is there still something of independance left? Would love to hear an explanation!

    This is the text i am referring to:

    —————————————————–

    Hello. I am member of Mozilla’s development team and these postings here lately force me now to react. Let me first clarify one thing. I do that because someone has finally to speak out some things… Things which should clearly brought out to the public….

    First, the incident about our short time CEO Eich….. many of us do NOT agree with what has happened. There has been a massive amount of pressure inside and outside of Mozilla which brought him to resign from his post.

    About the ads in the new tab page… Our reasoning for this is to make us more independent moneywise and influence wise from Google Inc. – the problem is, even with that we still are unable to break free of Google in so many ways sadly!

    About Australis and the so called chrome similarity: In business you have to make some compromise to get your income, there are quite a lot dependencies which often stand in the way what you can do or not do!

    BUT: I really would lie if i would now say that there would be no suggestions/recommendation/expectancies coming from the side of Google Inc towards us in terms of general feature request or UI features. Which leads to Australis. I can say, without Google Australis would be a hell of more customizable as it is as end result. Again.. many do not agree with Google’s influence and would like to see the relationship between Google Inc. and Mozilla terminated!

    And last but not least towards this political boycott… Eich’s departure is NOT the whole sickness, it is only part of the symptoms which are plaguing Mozilla. Mozilla as it is right now is torn into half. One half often does not like what the other half is planning. This and the massive amount of Third Party organization influence since a long time is leading to things like that which are damaging in a massive way Mozilla’s reputation!

    In the end many of us as i said do not agree with most of the above mentioned problems, the reason nobody is complaing is because it is like in every other business… criticize the leaders and you are history!

    If you really feel the need for a boycott… Do it against Australis, do it against Google’s influence and the influence of the ads industry into Mozilla! Stay with Firefox 28 instead of 29 or stay with Seamonkey. Drop your Google Mail, stop use Google search, write Google a message in their groups that you dislike their direct influence in many of Mozilla’s business/developement decisions! We have to get independent again!

    ———————————————

    So… Some answers are really needed!

    • Max Baum says:

      So.. You get rid of People who make things public and Google has direct influences into your design decisions and personal decisions like Eich?

      Let me tell you one Thing now.. I really loved Australis. But now… Dumping it instantly.

      Because at THAT Point i also can instantly use Google Chrome as you are no seperate entity anymore as it seems!

  • gojohnego says:

    50 years ago, it was completely OK to use words like Nigger to describe a group of people. Now, its not.

    Mr. Eich was selected to run a company and after that selection occurred, it was found that Eich not only used the equivalent of “Nigger”, he backed it up with a donation that said “Niggers can’t marry.”

    Freedom of speech does not mean freedom from consequences, and people who run a company must be held to a higher standard by their board and their employees.

    Will this have a chilling effect on language? Hopefully. Its a CEOs job to run a company and not let his personal politics become a distraction and lose business for the company.

    Everyone has a right to their beliefs and can donate money to support those beliefs, but when the support of those beliefs causes a personal harm, and in the action of them becomes offensive and distasteful, like calling a person a Nigger, the offense will have consequences.

    • Concerned Observer says:

      False analogy on so many levels. First, “50 years ago” “nigger” was a considered a slur. Also YOUR beliefs (i.e. that no one has a right to not like gay marriage, and contribute to a campaign to maintain the definition against activists like the Mayor of San Francisco) have just cost one of Mozilla’s founders his job and role with the organization, and may yet sink Mozilla itself. You could get fired if you called someone a “nigger” at work. Now why not show how wonderfully consistent you are, and trawl through those published lists of donors to the Yes campaign, and then call up Intel, Disney, Google etc and demand that they be fired! Then go and look at political donations, and demand that people who donated to political figures you don’t like get fired too. Can you not see where this is heading? Eich didn’t make a public statement as CEO, he didn’t donate public money. He wasn’t even a major figure in the campaign for Proposition 8 either in speeches or in donations. Quite a lot of people find homosexuality “offensive and distasteful”, but I’m quite sure you’re not happy about a gay worker, or executive, being forced out of a job when his sexual orientation has no baring on his work.

      • gojohnego says:

        Honestly, I would like to see a lot of CEOs lose their jobs when they express political opinions that are backward and restrictive of other people’s rights. One of the many reasons up until recently that GLBT issues weren’t taken seriously is because we were a convenient whipping boy who wouldn’t protest when beaten down. We as a community have learned a valuable lesson. When assaulted, respond with unified force and eventually people will learn not to fuck with us.

        As for what many people find offensive or distasteful, I don’t care what other people think, just don’t fuck with my money. If the opponents of Gay marriage really feel that its a religious institution and not a contract between two consenting adults with benefits endowed by the government, volunteer to give up all the rights and privileges, and change the institution to a ceremony issued by churches.

        And in case you’re unaware, its perfectly legal in many states to fire someone for being Gay. Maybe someday once people realize that pedophiles are heterosexuals with a mental issue who are attracted to children, and that condition has nothing in common with being Gay, which is attraction and affection between two consenting adults, maybe they’ll calm down. Maybe I have no interest in what straight people get up to in their bedrooms, and that I really don’t approve of a lot of the stuff straight people do, but I’m not in the business of supporting laws that interfere in their pursuit of happiness.

        Maybe more straight people could begin to understand that what goes on between two consenting adults does not require their attention or approval and that it might be best if people could find better things to spend time and money on?

      • gojohnego says:

        Its not a false analogy. At one time in this country, before protections were put in place, you could call someone a nigger at work and not be fired for it, but if you said it now, you’d lose your job.

        At one time, it was OK to discriminate against Gays, but it would appear the days of change are here where that is concerned.

  • richard baehr says:

    Is it also just messy to try to keep readers from going to some websites whose views are not the same as yours?

    http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2014/04/firefox_expands_into_censorship.html

  • LindmanX7 says:

    When can we expect the Third Party influences being gone which has presented us Brendan Eich leaving and Australis?

    When are you guys developing again for users instead of the ads industry and Google?

    It is ridiculous that you Mozilla guys seriously do believe that if you following Googles orders step by step you will gain again a higher marketshare.

    When can we users see finally this unhealthy relationship between Mozilla, Google and the ads-industry finally terminated?

    It is time to act Mozilla guys!

    • LindmanX7 says:

      Give us finally an answer! You force your own employees only in anonymity to speak to that public!

      Again, just kick Google or the ads-industry out! You not speaking out loud what is exactly going on is damaging your reputation more and more!

      So.. i ask again.. what is with this blog? Where is the transparency of the official side of Mozilla or have we really to rely on single anonymous sources which bring stuff to the open public?

      This guy accuses you of many many treason against us users! What do you say about it? Still waiting!

      http://darrningram.wordpress.com/

  • Max Baumann says:

    Wow… what for a blow! So Google is in fact telling what to implement and what not and also the ads industry is making pressure?

    #uninstallfirefox!

  • […] April 3, Eich resigned. Mozilla insists that he was not fired or asked to resign. The next day, Mozilla insider Mark Surman blogged, “Brendan didn’t need to change his mind on Proposition 8 to get out of the crisis […]

  • gmgj says:

    I was a proud user and supporter of Firefox, until the day after Brendan Eich choose to resign. Take any 30 of his detractors, combine their contributions to the Mozilla or Firefox organization. Compare that to the contributions the Eich made. I cannot support an organization, that would not support one of its own. I had thought Mozilla was one of the best things to evolve out of the internet age. I am now scared of it.

  • […] and angry, and they are right: it’s because we haven’t stayed true to ourselves.” In Mozilla is Human, Mark Surman, Executive Director of the Foundation, adds, “What we also need to do is start […]

  • Stan Rider says:

    “We were teaching the world how the web works”

    I suggest that you get a better propagandist qualification, because teacher you is not. The world doesn’t need your “teaching”, in fact it despises what you now stand for. Many of us, users of your products, feel betrayed. You don’t lead or even facilitate a ‘community’, Mozilla has shown itself to be a vehicle for intolerance, in civil society, you are now perceived as a rogue corporation.

    The thin veneer of compassion in your little promotional piece which pathetically aims to excuse a despicable situation is sickening. You should consider the fact that you’ll forever be associated with Mozilla at a time when it aligned itself with an intolerant ideological agenda.

    Your only honorable act now is to resign your executive directorship in protest of the situation.

  • darrningram says:

    Sorry to say, my Blog posts are a fake. DarrnIngram was part of a larger hoax. If you are interested in why and how… Here is something for you!

    http://youhavebeenhoaxed.wordpress.com/2014/04/15/darrn-ingram-hoax-we-got-you-d/

    I am sorry that i created trouble, but this hoax was way too tempting not to do it :D

    • darrningram says:

      Hereby i am apologize by all Mozilla guys for taking this one step too far. You will not hear anymore from me :D The next company target is already waiting :)

  • […] suggested that Eich’s fatal flaw has been his inability to portray empathy. In his public statements and […]

  • […] I’ve seen and felt that over the years, finding Brendan brilliant, but distant,” Mozilla Foundation Executive Director Mark Surman wrote[12] in a blog post after Eich resigned. “He is the perfect chief scientist,” said […]

  • […] I’ve seen and felt that over the years, finding Brendan brilliant, but distant,” Mozilla Foundation Executive Director Mark Surman wrote in a blog post after Eich resigned. “He is the perfect chief scientist,” said another […]

  • […] I’ve seen and felt that over the years, finding Brendan brilliant, but distant,” Mozilla Foundation Executive Director Mark Surman wrote in a blog post after Eich resigned. “He is the perfect chief scientist,” said another […]

  • […] Mark Surman gave perhaps the most nuanced explanation of why Eich left when he blogged that while Eich had “led a band of brilliant engineers and activists who freed the Internet from the grip…[13]” at the same time he wasn’t able to “connect and empathize with […]

  • […] Surman (of Mozilla) in Commonspace: Mozilla is Human. Why you should care about Mozilla as an essential institution. (Brian Behlendorf recommends this […]

  • […] I’ve seen and felt that over the years, finding Brendan brilliant, but distant,” Mozilla Foundation Executive Director Mark Surman wrotein a blog post after Eich resigned. “He is the perfect chief scientist,” said another […]

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