2 min

Mozilla Firefox browser is losing users and who cares?

Mar 8, 2015 - Why I won’t mourn Mozilla by Eric Raymond

I agree with that post.

I use Firefox with JavaScript disabled as my default browser on my old laptop. I use the NoScripts plugin to control JavaScript. This makes web sites load faster.

For some reason, Chrome kills the CPU on my laptop, especially when I open more than a couple tabs. This issue began in Dec 2013 or Jan 2014.

Firefox's performance improved in 2013 or 2014, and Firefox didn't bog down my computer. So I switched my main browser pref from Chrome to Firefox.

But Mozilla's cowardly, mob mentality and lack of diverse thinking makes me agree with this Raymond piece.


An incredibly shrinking Firefox faces endangered species status, says Computerworld, and reports their user market share at 10% and dropping.

I wish I could feel sadder about this. Instead, all I can think is “They brought the fate they deserved on themselves.” Because principles matter – and in 2014 the Mozilla Foundation abandoned and betrayed one of the core covenants of open source.

I refer, of course, to the Foundation’s disgraceful failure to defend its newly promoted Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich against a political mob.

One of the central values of the hacker culture from which Mozilla sprang is that you are to be judged by the quality of your work alone. We aspire to be a pure meritocracy, casting aside irrelevancies of race, sex, nationality, and of political and sexual preferences.

Brendan Eich lived those values. Though he was excoriated for donating to California Proposition 8, it was never even claimed – let alone established – that he judged gay hackers on the Firefox project by anything but their code.

Another central value of the hacker culture, intertwined with judgment only by the work, is free expression – the defense of people holding and expressing unpopular opinions. It must be this way, because suppression of dissent prevents us from discovering and acknowledging that our beliefs do not align with reality. That hinders the work.

When Brendan Eich was attacked, the correct response of the Mozilla Foundation from within hacker and open-source values would have been, at minimum “His off-the-job politics are none of our business.”

Instead, the Foundation truckled to that political mob. By failing to defend and support Eich, the Mozilla Foundation wronged a man who had every right to expect that he, too, would be judged by his work alone.

[The Mozilla Foundation] abandoned the hacker way and trashed their own legitimacy. It was a completely unforced error.

Eich donated money to a political campaign, which is legal in the U.S. It's part of our democratic process. He didn't do anything illegal. And apparently, his personal, "private" viewpoint did not affect his work with the Mozilla Foundation. He separated his personal life from work.

I disagree with Eich's viewpoint on this issue, but in my opinion, his view on one issue has nothing to do with his work at the Mozilla Foundation.

Programmers like to separate projects into smaller pieces or modules. Reusable components, libraries, and frameworks.

But the mob failed to separate Eich's viewpoint on one issue from this contributions to the Mozilla Foundation.

#web #technology #politics #moronism

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