Hi. My name is Gervase Markham. I’m a supporter of traditional marriage, and I work for Mozilla. In fact, as far as being on the record goes, I believe I’m now the only one.
Many people who agree with me on this issue are very upset about what happened to Brendan Eich, our co-founder and, for two weeks, CEO of the Mozilla Corporation. Brendan was appointed and then, after 10 days under the Internet’s lens of anger based on his donation in opposition to the redefinition of marriage, stepped down and stepped away from Mozilla – to our great loss.
I am assured by sources I trust that Brendan decided to leave of his own accord – he was not forced out. My understanding is that the senior management of Mozilla (many of whom disagree with him on this issue) worked very hard to support him, even if I would not agree with all the actions they took in doing so. However, he eventually felt that it was impossible for him to focus on leading if he was spending all of his time dealing with the continued, relentless news and social media storm surrounding the donation he made. In other words, he wasn’t forced out from the inside – he was dragged out from the outside.
So, here’s my plea: please don’t be angry with Mozilla. Mozilla and what it does and stands for is too important to the future of the free web to allow this to do it damage. It was us who brough innovation back to the web browser market and started the process which led to the awesome web you use today. And now, we’re trying to do the same with the closed smartphone market. I believe that connecting billions of people in the developing world to the web at minimal cost and with full fidelity will lead to the next great advance in human flourishing, as people can use the information they discover to make their own lives better. That’s our goal.
If you can’t find it in your heart to forgive them (the course I would recommend), then your anger is best directed at those outside Mozilla who made his position untenable. The press that twist and sensationalize without investigation, social media which magnifies and over-simplifies without consideration, and those who rush to judgement without understanding. I’m not going to name names or organizations. But as far as Mozilla itself goes, please, please continue to support us.
I am determined to work to make all Mozillians of whatever beliefs – and whatever actions they take outside of Mozilla in support of those beliefs – confident that, if they can work with other Mozillians as Brendan did so well for 15 years, Mozilla is a place for them. How successful we’ll be at that depends on how our community deals with what just happened – but it also depends on you. If you jump to paint Mozilla in the colours of ‘the opposition’, that will become a self-fulfilling prophecy. And the world will be poorer for it.
Mozilla is caught in the middle of a worldview war. Let’s not make the free web a casualty.
I have a simple request to the people leading Mozilla at the moment: “Please ignore everything which is not related to the fight for the open web and the fight to let web standards progress”. Only this fight should be the mission of Mozilla, and this should be the only subject where Mozilla has an (outspoken) opinion about.
At the moment this will be a “show, don’t tell” issue for me…
You came to mind when this all started. If anyone can empathize with Brendan, it’s you.
I remembered what you too had unfairly gone through for your own -personal- beliefs and expressions.
It’s sad that people have seemed to have forgotten why we as Mozillians are here which is what I keep repeating and that is to focus on what brings us together, not what separates us.
a supporter of traditional marriage
i.e. forbidding same-sex couples and divorcees from having the rights to marry. That’s not “supporting traditional marriage”, it’s seeking to have the state enforce a monopoly on the kind of marriage that your flavour of Christians approve of.
I’m not angry with Mozilla, I’m angry with people who seek thus to oppress.
The letter Mozilla should have written.
The swastika on the logo is a nice touch.
Er, no. Not nice. The other thing.
I think https://medium.com/p/a28c7f243ba9 makes the (contrary) case rather better.
Don’t be ridiculous, please.
The “forgiving” is good and possible when you are on the winning side, when you can decide to spare your enemy. It is bad and impossible when you are deprived of your freedom, oppressed, silenced, enslaved. The irony of the current situation is the same people who cry because they are “discriminated minority” think and act like Nazis and they aggressively suppress any dissident.
About not being angry at Mozilla, it would be the case IF Eich wasn’t stabbed in the back by Mozillians first. I have read countless comments on the Internet which stated something like “he is wrong, he should apologize, I don’t agree with him, etc… then finally “but please forgive him”. Mozillians have been hypocritical at best and the reason is they truly believe there isn’t a place in Mozilla for anybody who doesn’t support Mozilla’s political agenda. Now the few (if any) inside Mozilla who don’t comply with what the Party dictates know they must hide, otherwise they will be forced to leave as well.
Sorry Gerv but I have no intention of continuing to support and utilise products of a company which practices such intolerance. Put me down on the list of those removing Firefox from all devices both at home and work.
If Mozilla retracts its apology and reinstates its CEO – for it was absolutely not in an untenable situation – then of course I’ll support them again.
But while it serves as an enabler, no. What Mozilla has done here sends a resounding message about how to successfully bully. This is precedent setting.
OK, can we drop the “nazi” rhetoric? This is a polite request rather than censorship. But while we’re at it, if he’d been campaigning to remove rights from Jewish people or Black people, would that still be OK?
Good post Gerv, thanks.
The irony of it all is that “the oppressed” just oppressed.
Thank you for taking a bold stand. It’s so refreshing in this day and age.
Gerv, what you should do is to look inward, into your own organization. That Brendan resigned is due in no small measure to the activities of people in your organization, and their failure to support him. The gaystapo controls mozilla, it calls the shots. You are now working for this ugly and inhumane movement. Do you think it will stop at Brendan? Do you think you will be safe from them in a few years time? If you do, please continue to speak up on their behalf. I, for one, will be uninstalling the browser from all of my machines as soon as I test a and settle on a reasonable alternative.
The time now is for Mozilla to apologize for not providing sufficient support and speak up on behalf of the man who helped found it. No good whining that you supported him now – the objective truth is that you, as an organization did not support him. We all know this. So you should spend your energy to castigate your colleagues in the organization, else do the honorable thing and resign. Instead, you should be thinking how you might join Brendan and others like-minded citizens to develop a truly apolitical browser.
It depends what you mean with “ok”.
I don’t like to eat snails, so if you ask me if eating snails is ok I would say “no”. But if you ask me if somebody else should be allowed to eat snails I would say “yes”. De gustibus non desputandum est (you don’t criticize other people’s tastes).
I do have my beliefs and it happened many times that I had to work alongside people with different or even opposite beliefs. So I had three options, mind the business, quit and boycott them. Among the three options “mind the business” and “quit” are “ok”, boycott is “not ok” because implicitly I am saying people with different views aren’t allowed to exist in the same space as me. Here we aren’t discussing about mozzillians quitting because they did not agree with Eich, we are discussing about Eich being suppressed.
About “removing rights”, I don’t see any “right” in “same-sex marriage”, It doesn’t exist in my country. In my own language the word for “marriage” translates in “the duty of the wife” and it roots in giving birth to babies, so it is a nonsense for gays. It is a different topic when it comes to define rights and duties of “not-married couples”. That can be done easily and can set any possible issue but one: it can’t affirm by law that a man is a woman and vice-versa.
Well, then you keep on using Mozilla products. It will do really well with the business of 3% of the population and that of okcupid.
The point is very simple: Mozilla demonstrated that it is not to be relied upon to be apolitical. It clearly demonstrates that it is no different from Google, Microsoft or Amazon. And so it has demonstrated hypocrisy beyond pale, in so doing it has destroyed much of the most important capital which an organization like it needs to survive: trust. I for one, do not trust it any longer. I will never, ever use it again, unless it expunges the thugs who are now controlling it. They must go! If they stay, they’re welcome to your business. Let them make a success out of it. But I guess you’re that stupid that you don’t understand that this means YOU will be losing out as well.
The character assassination started with employees of Mozilla Foundation. Mozilla should have acted quickly and fired them. Will they still be employed?
Mozilla Foundation claim they made a mistake promoting Brendan? This is just not consistent with your pitch.
There are still claims being made that Brendan lacked empathy and could not feel others pain. This is not even relevant to the job. Just more character assassination.
There are allegations that a board member resigned because they did not agree with Brendan’s management style. Hostile.
If some minorities run a hate campaign against a Mozilla employee then they should be reported to the authorities for their hate crimes. This is not the angle Mozilla are putting on this.
The issue is very US centric as Brendan pointed out. The outcome has chilling effects for contributors in many other countries with different beliefs. Do you really expect they will be as willing to work with Mozilla?
Brendan takes with him knowledge and contacts that are not quickly replaceable, if ever, and the fight for the open web can ill afford a delay. There is now no one at Mozilla able to orchestrate this battle so Mozilla no longer matters. This is a loss of a CTO, not just a CEO. There is a vacuum, it’s not yet clear how it will be filled, but Mozilla is no long so ‘important’.
Mozilla have caved in to a minority, now reap the majority.
Apologies are for losers, on both ends. Apologies don’t make any difference. We must judge from actions, not words.
For your information, till recent times babies born from “not-married couples” (of course not gay) had different right and duties compared to babies from marriages. For example if your brother had a child and he died, if he wasn’t married you wouldn’t be called in, only grandparents would. If he was married you would be called it along with his whole family (following the clan-like scheme). Same goes with inheritance and other right/dtuties. New laws had been approved recently right to “equalize” the legal status of “non-married couples” and their children with “married couples”.
It’s not a matter of whether it exists in your country. It’s a matter of fact that at the time that Eich donated to Prop 8, it was campaigning to remove rights that then existed in California.
And this is relevant how? “The law in my country could be better, so how can someone who tries to make the law in another country worse possibly be at fault?”
After the resignation of Brendan Eich, I decided to stop contributing and also stop using any of Mozilla products.
And in the future I wouldn’t recommend nor helping people installing firefox, thunderbird, or any mozilla’s products on their computer or devices.
I just cannot help an organization which tells people that they honour freedom of speech while the fact they cannot provide sufficient actions to help keeping Brendan’s thinking.
So let’s get this straight. “Character assassination” *should* be a firable offence? But campaigning to remove marriage rights from your employees is just free speech and should be overlooked? Right.
See, this is the idiotic propaganda which you people vomit all over the net. What frigging ‘rights’ are you talking about?
Are you a professional activist? Because, judging by the propagandist bull you sprout here, you sure sound like one.Eich was not ‘campaigning’ to remove any rights, he donated some money to a campaign to abolish special rights.
It would be relevant if you grasp the concept that the “american LGBT communty” is an all-american show, nobody cares elsewhere. We are told of “rights” inside a social context that is unknown to us (same goes for Jews and Blacks) and that Mozilla exist to pursue some “values” we don’t appreciate. While we understand and appreciate what Eich did in the technical field.
At the end the conclusion is Mozilla gets screwed to make american LGBT community happier. We as users of Mozilla’s products get screwed as well and we are told we should support the LGBT cause. Clowns.
No. I’m a professional natural language processing researcher. It’s an interesting field of work.
I fail to see the difference between campaigning to remove rights and paying a campaign to remove rights. Possibly this is a distinction you think is more important than I do, but I don’t think this counts as my “spouting bull”.
I’m not American.
Dude, you do like Pilate and ask the whole world if they want to put Eich on the cross or the whole LGBT community of California and you listen to the answer.
The Prop8, whatever it was, could simple have the same effect as people from California moving in my own country so sorry but I don’t see it like the end of the world. And I don’t get why people from California can decide who is entitled to work for Mozilla, unless Mozilla serves only the State of California. I wasn’t asked about it, for example.
But the whole drama at Mozilla was.
“You people”? “vomit”? “idiotic”?
Perhaps you could maintain a civil tone.
As written in another comment here:
“The issue is very US centric as Brendan pointed out. The outcome has chilling effects for contributors in many other countries with different beliefs.”
Professor, on the Internet we are all geniuses, during history “rights” have been added and removed. For example at some point of american history a man had the “right” to buy slaves and dispose of them at will. Then this “right” was removed. So back then there were people campaigning to remove the “right” to own slaves. In my own country till recent time when an husband found his wife in bed with the plumber could kill them both and then, when sentenced for homicide he got the “right” of a reduction because he was defending his honor. So back then some people had to campaign to remove the “right” to shoot your wife and the plumber. I could go on for ever.
It is much more simpler than that. The strong rules and the weak submits. In America and inside Mozilla the LGBT community is strong and wants to rule, anybody who don’t comply is weak and submits.
I think you’re letting your antipathy to LGBT rights cloud your judgement and sinking to name-calling.
I note your assumption that only gay/bi people (if I interpret your use of 3% correctly) could possibly think that there’s a case here. I’m happy to stand as a counterexample.
You have no right or ability to label anyone “intolerance” so get down of your high horse right now. Why? Let’s see…
I’m willing to bet you disagree with things other people would find perfectly acceptable. Last I checked most people do not support polygamy and yet some people consider that perfectly fine. By not accepting (and supporting) their beliefs as equally valid then that makes you equally intolerant. This means you have no right to brand anyone else with the same seal… ouch… stings doesn’t it?
OK, and you think that either a person who says “slavery should be reinstated” or “slavery should not be reinstated” are equally good candidates for Mozilla CEO.
We must agree to disagree.
I made many job interviews and I was never asked what I thought of slavery. Either what I thought about Jews or gays.
That is because usually you are hired for a job depending on what your skills and talents are, not because what your beliefs, political opinions or religion are.
Otherwise your question could be also put in these terms: “a person who says [whatever not-mainstream idea] can be CEO”? Following this logic, neither Galileo or Einstein could be CEO. To not mention any of the “fathers” of Nations who usually were pirates, murderers, terrorists, enslavers and alike.
Next CEO at Mozilla must be black, jew and gay. Am I forgetting anything?
You’re right, Gerv! No need to be angry with mozilla. On the contrary, that’s when mozilla needs us perhaps more than ever.
It’s no news that all mozillians do not share the same beliefs, have different opinions on a lot of questions. That’s diversity and we were always proud of that.
This is a horrible crisis but I’m sure that we can go through this, together, if we can focus on the one thing that drives us forward: mozilla.
You mean Rainbowzilla.
Let’s keep it civil, please. I have a very high bar for deleting comments on this blog, but please don’t push me to work out exactly where it is.
Stop boring me with US politics. The Mozilla community has rules to help us all get along and it forbids raising such divisive issues. Leave it at the door. Brendan did! Some employees crossed this line, and their target was someone much more important than them all put together, they should have been fired.
To answer your question: Mozilla, unlike many employers, does not restrict what its employees can say. Now, whether those people who spoke out where right, or wise to speak in public, is a different question. But they will not lose their jobs over it.
Who is claiming that Mozilla made a mistake promoting Brendan? I’m not sure what you are referring to.
Empathy is very relevant to the job of CEO. It’s a people job. I’m a big fan of Brendan’s, but I agree that he would have needed coaching there. In a better world, he would have had time to get it.
[Edit: actually, the above is unfair. I haven’t spent enough time around Brendan face-to-face recently to say that about his empathy.]
In fact nobody lost his job. He resigned voluntarily. I expect one of these days I am going to read he was sick and needed some rest, then he was hospitalized in some psychiatric clinic, then to be told “Eich who? Never heard of such a name”, then all his pictures to be removed from anywhere around the “dear leaders”. You know, pretty much the same as when some guy went missing suddenly from the Red Square Parade.
On a side note, here employees can say what they want unless they are managers and they criticize the company who pays them. I have never heard of somebody who got dismissed because he signed a petition about introducing or abolishing some law or even joined a political party. And here we have real communists and fascists, not vague democrats and republicans.
When I say mozilla, I mean mozilla.
I’ve supported and contrinuted to mozilla for ten years now. And I will continue because mozilla’s mission matters to me.
If it does not to you, that’s your choice and I won’t question it.
Funny how gays demand tolerance from others, yet have no tolerance with those who disagree with their way of life. And pathetic Mozilla fell for it.
Laughable. When you say “choice” you usually mean somebody has got options among which she/he can choose. It is not our case.
You say about “the mission”. Before this strange show I thought Mozilla’s mission was to develop good software, where “good” means both about quality and about nature, in the best interest of people.
From what I have read these days it seems the mission instead is about promoting “rights”, “values” and a sort of general vision about what human kind should be.
So while before I could support Mozilla because of good software and related strategies, now I am asked to support a “vision” that is about a sort of political/social agenda. Basically I am requested to support a sort of political movement/party.
And there are two problems with it. First, I probably don’t share most of the “values” or “goals” of this political movement. Second, like I wrote elsewhere, Mozilla seems to be totally focused on the american environment and I am not involved in it.
Just to be realyl politically correct, add ‘female’.
I say “Rainbowzilla” because it fits better for an organization that is lead by/promotes the LGBT american community.
Some disability on top?
If you lived in a country like mine, where since the end of WWII there has been a big communist party, you knew the trick well. You follow the line drawn by the leaders you are praised. You deviate a centimeter (1/3 of inch :) ) from the line, you are the public enemy. In a wall near my house there is a writing on a wall from the ’70s, the age of progress and it states “to kill a fascist is not a crime”. Of course with “fascist” they meant “everybody who disagrees with us”.
LorenzoC: please can I ask you to try and avoid dominating the discourse? It is not required to respond to everything everyone else says. http://xkcd.com/386/
Ok then read this:
The guy poops some in his pants and like everybody else as first thing he makes everybody sure he supports the LGBT but pretty much says all I wanted to say.
And now I quit. Sorry for being annoying.
you are forgetting things here: Mozilla *did* know that issue might occur, and proceeded carelessly just to make Brendan CEO. As you know there are 3 board members that left because of this decision.
The second thing you are forgetting is: This issue is not only gender equality. It’s the old “corporation vs. community” struggle that we have had so many conversations about. Now, did you really just tell me that “corporation / mission and community” are equally important? Well, here we go: Mozilla would just hire someone because he is great at the technological side of things and at the same time totally neglect that he is not a strong person in terms of community, given his views are so limited. Now, are we really equally important here?
The issue was also not his donation…It was him not acknowledging this as a problem. If he had been considerate of the community and apologized for donating or even explained his motivations, things might’ve been a lot less critical now.
You are wrong to say that 3 board members left because of the decision. I don’t know if you’ve been at any of the meetings, but Mitchell has repeatedly explained (and we have issued a statement to the press) that two of them were planning to leave at that time anyway. One did leave because Brendan was chosen, but the reason was nothing to do with his donation.
Brendan had great community strength. This may be an English-first-language thing, but saying he needed to improve his people skills is not the same thing as saying that he didn’t believe in Mozilla as a community, or that he thought that MoCo was the only important bit. Absolutely the opposite.
“Apologized for donating” – assuming his views are still the same as they were, are you asking him to lie? Of course he could have made this go away by sacrificing his integrity. I’m glad he didn’t.
This is not about gay marriage and not even really about freedom of expression. The problem is that some time ago people, mostly of the left but quite a few on the right, discovered that they could shut up people who disagreed with them by throwing a fit and claiming that their delicate feelings were hurt. Because many people and corporations are cowards, they were allowed to get away with this behavior until we are almost at a point where any comment or action that could possibly offend someone somewhere is grounds for termination. We simply cannot have a civil society when the hyper sensitive and the perpetually aggrieved are allowed their way. We will end up in a civil war unless the grown ups start to stand up the bullies. Your company has decided to let themselves be bullied. They must take the consequences. Maybe the next target will learn from Mozilla’s example and stand up for themselves.
That is the falsest of false equivalences.
You are accusing an oppressed minority of not having enough tolerance of people who take action to deny them equal rights under the law?
I understand Gerv and (presumably) Brendan Eich disagree with me on marriage equality, and that is fine. Maybe I have a different opinion on private gun ownership or something. That’s all just private opinion.
There is an ocean of distance, though, between saying “I believe my God only sanctifies the love of one man for one woman” (opinion) and actively working to change the law of the land so that the STATE follows YOUR INTERPRETATION of your religion (enforcement). In the first case you can be a saint and I a sinner and it’s up to your God to judge. In the second, you are requiring the state to judge me based on rules you want to live by.
Well, I have bad news, bud. My God tells me it is a mortal sin for people named Steve to smile in public, and I’m working to make that belief law.
Don’t you fucking oppress me and tell me I can’t tell you how to live.
Alright, I am not properly informed about these board members, I give you that. But even if those board members did not leave because of Brendan being appointed CEO, it was still a careless move making him CEO and a blow against the community cause A CEO represents the company and what it stands for, no denying there. Would you appoint a Hitler 2.0 to CEO only because he can really push forward the open web?
Sorry, Tobbi – Godwin’s law. I’m done here.
Yes, he lost his job. He was effectively pressured or forced out of Mozilla. Don’t simplify it into a simple decision he made of his own volition. I’m pretty sure if you put yourself in his shoes you would eat those words.
Mozilla pushed the guy out to get along with the 2% poor me lgbt. No one is depriving rights. Good bye Mozilla (bullshiters)
The “hypersensitive” are neither left nor right. They simply co-opt whatever is most convenient to hide behind for their cause at the time, whatever their true beliefs are. For instance quite a few of the people who have gone after Eich and Mozilla about this are keen to bandy the word “bigot” about without realizing they’re acting in similarly bigoted ways (regardless of which bigotry is the socially-accepted one in their region).
The real problem is that many see things as simple battles-to-be-won instead of the nuanced reality that we will always have to live with differences of opinion, some of them actual challenges to our own beliefs and ways of life. It’s fine to push back and stand up for what you believe in, but the moment you begin throwing the baby out with the proverbial bathwater, you’ve lost the privilege to claim moral high ground or consider yourself a righteous superhero.
Perspective is something that the hypersensitive never understand, and it’s why we end up with people unable to tolerate intolerance, even slightly, and sadly that kind of pressure generally only leads to more intolerance from the very people they are trying to beg tolerance from. In the process, we can lose all sorts of other things, which these people view as “necessary losses” or worse, simply as unimportant to them and their cause. It’s a vicious cycle of self-entitled stupidity that brings out the worst in everyone.
I had previously considered your point of view. Mozilla may be flawed, but it’s the best flawed organization out there.
But Mozilla has created a new glass ceiling.
Starting this week, we have a disturbing new reality. Your private actions outside your job now matter in your job. Mozilla started it. Other organizations will certainly follow. Eich was a model employee, kept his politics at home, and followed company protocol. Mozilla’s protocol even lays it out, giving rules (a) and (b) on what should be done while an employee, and then “(c) when if (a) and (b) are met, other Mozillians should treat this as a private matter, not a Mozilla issue.” He followed the rules. He kept his politics at home and supported equality at the job. This was not enough. He was pressured out. Mozilla didn’t disown and apologize for this, but instead just stated that Eich left for the good of the organization.
Now, thanks to Mozilla, tens of millions of us face a new glass ceiling. We’re being told “You can work at Mozilla. You can follow our company protocol. But you can never be a CEO. Because you don’t *think* correctly in your free time.” I’m worried how many other organizations will copy Mozilla, and just how large this new glass ceiling will become.
Gervase, *you* can’t be CEO now. Really, can you see Mozilla bringing on a traditional marriage supporter as CEO after what just happened? I sure can’t. We’ve become second class. Like Jonathon Protzenko said in this blog “I know for certain that people have opinions that they are afraid to express in the Mozilla Community. Some people are religious, and will take great care _not_ to reveal that fact. Some people may have other beliefs that do not align with the dominant, Silicon-Valley progressive ideology. They also make sure that these are not apparent.”
Mozilla is no longer what it claims to be. So I wonder “Do I forgive them, try to work for change from the inside, convince them we aren’t second class citizens? Or do I just give up, this is a precedent I can’t accept?”
I gave up. I left Mozilla this week after 15 years of loyal support going back to the M5 build. I was involved in an extension with two million downloads. I worked on a plugin that Mozilla adopted and my name showed up in Mozilla source code. I loved Mozilla. But it’s changed. I’m not equal anymore, and the Mozilla community led the charge. And it’s getting worse. I just can’t accept or forgive that right now.
I get the feeling you didn’t read the article you’re commenting on.
I’m sorry I found this discussion so late. I have something that a lot of people need to learn, although I doubt that I will have the last word, unfortunately.
In our school district Barack Obama once gave a televised address to school children. A lot of parents kept their children at home because of their hatred of Barack Obama. They said he was going to indoctrinate their kids, when in fact, he told them to stay in school and study hard.
If you teach your kids never to listen to anyone with opposing views, not even the President, then you’re undermining democracy itself. There are certain rights and responsibilities of citizenship, and these people failed badly.
In a civilized society, everyone needs to understand that other people have legitimate opinions too. Failure to acknowledge other points of view as legitimate is the cause of all the horrible conflicts in the world. People destroy their own countries rather than acknowledge others. I can’t believe that some people are trying to destroy Mozilla with exactly the same kind of behavior.
Dania: Allow me to offer you an alternative…
Replace the Google search with DuckDuckGo.
That way, Mozilla won’t get any money from you, and you can keep using the browser you’re used to. And, as a bonus, you’ll get search results that respect your privacy and don’t track you!
(Of course, the choice is yours, as always, but I wanted to let you know that there were other alternatives that you might prefer.)
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Gerv, thank you for being an openly Christian hacker, in public. You are somewhat of a role model to me (and no doubt others); me being a Christian, aspiring hacker, and often too afraid of men. I hope to email you privately, but wanted to publicly commend you on your good work, and faithful witness to our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
Please read https://medium.com/p/7645a4bf8a2 which give much factual information. Brendan was not fired. He was not forced out. On the contrary he was heavily supported and encouraged, up to the bitter end, by the senior staff. He left out of LOVE for the organization, so that it’s mission could be carried out in the strongest possible way.
As I commented on your post yesterday, I am very disappointed with Mozilla over their handling of this affair. And I am moving on from Firefox over it. Moving on from Thunderbird is going to be a little harder. But I assure you that my ire for the people outside of Mozilla who went after Mr. Eich is a lot more than my ire for Mozilla. But it did not go without notice that this kerfuffle did not start with OKCupid or any of the other outside groups. It originally started with people inside of Mozilla making a stink over Eich’s promotion. And that is on Mozilla.
I certainly hope that you are right. And if you are then one day maybe I’ll come back to Firefox. I would hate for you to become the victim of an ideological purge.
Quite right. Unfortunately cheap shots + cheap communications + cheap unresearched press (if we can call it “press”) are a terrible combination for our society.
The issue isn’t really American but the *handling* of it was and the effect is indeed chilling.
Also, I want to say, Gerv, as another Mozillian, while my views are different from yours, I deeply appreciate the spirit of this post and I am really holding out hope for our community moving forward working in inclusion of many views.
Gerv wrote: “Mozilla, unlike many employers, does not restrict what its employees can say.”
This is an internal construct and allowed Mozilla to damage itself. It is not an external matter as you claim. It could have, and can be, easily corrected.
Mitchell’s post sounds like a claim that Mozilla made a mistake promoting Brendan.
Mark Surman, Executive Director, Mozilla Foundation on Brendan: ‘his inability to connect and empathize with people’.
Gerv wrote: “Empathy is very relevant to the job of CEO.”
This is just your belief, and internally constructed requirement, for the CEO position. Brendan is a really accommodating person. If people still can not accept him then they have no placing at Mozilla which was basically Brendan’s support team.
It is Mozilla that constructed an environment hostile to Brendan. Brendan was more important to the future of the open web than the rest of you put together. The correct decision would have been to fire everyone who can not get along with and support Brendan. Brendan could launch a browser fork tomorrow and his loyal support team would follow, and there would be nothing left of Mozilla worthy of attention.
Our Ire is not misdirected. Mozilla has been corrupted by too many interest groups interpreting the mission for the own ends, and this has become so disruptive that the core can no longer work at Mozilla. There are only two paths forward: a massive purge at Mozilla, or a rebirth of the core elsewhere. Sorry Gerv you sound more worried for yourself than supportive of Brendan.
RE: Forgive Mozilla for now having and enforcing a social/political agenda???
I think not – I can smell the BS wafting across my computer screen. Uninstalling Mozilla will cause me some pain. I have always been a loyal user. But this hypocrisy by Mozilla is appalling. Mozilla should not be concerned with the personal views/beliefs of employees, period. What’s next? Employees who don’t tow the party line being subjected to “attitude readjustments?” Sheesh… there’s ‘live and let live’ and then ‘my way or the highway.’ Apparently Mozilla demands everyone stay on their highway now. As for me – I’m going off road. Adios.
Thanks for your post – it was spot on. Now I have to uninstall Firefox and install Chrome (I am SO upset – seriously – I hate Chrome). But I happy to have some values that I not willing to compromise on. Freedom of speech and belief are two values I will NEVER compromise on. I feel sorry for anyone working for Mozilla – they must all be looking over their shoulders wondering if they said, did or posted anything that isn’t considered “politically correct” at any point in their life.
“your anger is best directed at those outside Mozilla who made his position untenable”
This exposition even makes me feel worse! You don’t get it! Mozilla doesn’t want to take responsibility for their actions but wants to put the blame on others.
People bothered about Mozilla’s behavior do not hate the LGBT community – we hate that Mozilla didn’t support the value of all diverse opinions although Mozilla acts like they do!
Mozilla blew it! My family will use a different browser.
I think you misunderstand. The reason people are bothered right now is exactly what you talk about! Mozilla squelched the voice of an outstanding employee that had different views from others! And one way people can voice disappointment with this behavior is to go to another browser…
Spoiled Children Object To The Shoulders They Stand On. Hilarity Ensues.
“Mozilla, unlike many employers, does not restrict what its employees can say.”
Until someone else complains – then you give them boot.
I have used Mozilla since its first version. I am older on the Internet than Netscape. I always trusted Mozilla – even though lately it started working poorer and poorer – but this is beyond my ability to forgive.
I can forgive a crappy update. I can forgive 6 months of the browser working bad. I can forgive poor customer service. I can forgive many things and then donate some more to Mozilla and other Open Source places hoping things will get better.
But what I cannot and will not ever forgive is ideological policing.
I hope Mozilla goes bankrupt.
I myself already convinced 150 people to stop using Mozilla on all their devices.
I will start recommending all my clients to stop using Mozilla and I will actively promote alternatives (Pale Moon, Konqueror, etc.) and will invest my own money into a full scale anti-campaign against Mozilla from now till the end of my time on this Earth.
With a bit of luck, I will have convinced at least 2000 people by the end of this year to stop using Mozilla. Maybe more.
I am sorry to do that but you guys brought it upon yourselves.
If you thought that it was better to give in to the demands of the wankers on OkCupid, then good luck doing business only with those wankers.
P.S.: I don’t live in the U.S. I’m not even a native English speaker (English is my 4th language). But I’m sure as hell I don’t believe in gay marriage and am sure as hell I do believe in one’s freedom to express his opinions and act upon them in their private time. I have contacts in many small companies across Europe. I will make sure to convince every single one of them to drop using Mozilla. Mozilla will get to learn the hard way!
Firstly, as many others have done, I’d like to commend you on this post. It is brave, honest and, most of all, very enlightening. Your post here has me reconsidering my recent feelings for Mozilla, based on the Brendan Eich saga.
The (US) constitutional right, and basic human liberty, to express (and maintain) an opinion/belief/etc is Mozilla’s priority #1 (its mission statement of an “Open Web” dictates that). It is not unimportant that an employee of Mozilla had to step down from a leadership position for exercising this exact right.
Marriage, until recently in the United States, is largely thought of as a union between a man and a woman. Its redefinition (or generalization) is most certainly subject to debate and its opposition in no way should be considered oppression (to the point of job loss eligibility). It is certainly not Mozilla’s mission or goal to take sides and/or answer this debate.
So, at the expense of Mozilla’s mission statement (“Open Web”), Mozilla placated same-sex marriage proponents (which may have been necessary, as you point our). However, it seems something DID get lost in this transaction. I feel like at this point there MUST be a counterbalance to this force, a group of Mozillians (like yourself) should openly and publicly state their support for Brendan Eich and free speech. Let the world know who and what Mozilla really is. Maybe, just maybe, there is SOMETHING positive that can come from this.
No, he just didn’t believe it. Nor do I.
“My God tells me it is a mortal sin for people named Steve to smile in public, and I’m working to make that belief law” – a worthy cause, you should devote your life and fortune to it.
Should someone who wants to make it illegal for people named Steve be fired from their job? I don’t think so, perhaps you disagree.
“Some poor person at Mozilla has the unfortunate responsibility of being in charge of responding to comments left by conservative bigots who do not like that disgraced now-former Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich made the decision to step down after realizing that his disgusting, anti-equality views were not accepted by society at large. …conservatives began attacking Mozilla on Facebook over Eich’s unilateral decision to step down before his bigotry did further harm to the company.” – John Prager, Americans Against the Tea Party
It doesn’t really make sense to move to Chrome over this. Google officially objected to Proposition 8 back in 2008:
And that wasn’t under anything like the kind of pressure Mozilla faced. Given that position, it’s easy to presume that any potential Google CEO candidate would be quietly eliminated before it became a PR issue.
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That is a stellar example of what Gerv characterized in his original post as “press that twist and sensationalize without investigation, social media which magnifies and over-simplifies without consideration, and those who rush to judgement without understanding.”
But your beliefs are wrong, and not based on the facts, that is the whole point. If you could justify your beliefs against gay marriage, you would have. But in every court case up to the Supreme Court, all the best arguments in the world against gay marriage have been tried, and have failed spectacularly.
You have the right to believe hateful things that are false and that you can not justify. But there is nothing you can do to make your beliefs true, and there is nothing you can do to win the arguments that you pick with people whose families you want to destroy.
The majority of the American people support gay marriage. And gay marriage is now legal in the UK. So you are living in a delusional fantasy world if you think only 3% of people support gay marriage.
Thank you for stepping up to the plate and demonstrating how irrational and disconnected from reality the people on Brendan’s, Gerv’s and your side of the argument really are. You may not realize it yourself, because you are so self delusional, but people like you are the reason there has been such a dramatic shift in public opinion towards supporting gay marriage.
So keep on doing exactly what you’re doing, please!
Actually, it’s funny that you should mention it: Brendan Eich DID in fact give his financial support to candidates who espouse racist, white supremacist, Nazi ideology: Patrick J. Buchanan.
My other comment that includes many quotes to prove my point is “awaiting moderation” and it’s likely that Gerv will not approve it because it’s so embarrassing to him, but here is a summary with links and a few quotes of MANY that prove my point:
I’m extremely disappointed with Brendan Eich that he didn’t disclose to the Mozilla board the fact that he ALSO financially supported racist, misogynistic and anti-Semitic candidates, including Patrick J. Buchanan and Ron Paul.
That was the final straw that broke the camel’s back, and caused Brendan to decide to resign only days after he insisted in an interview that he would not resign. If he’d had the honesty to disclose his support of those bigots to the Mozilla board in the first place, he would never been appointed CEO.
Pat Buchanan and Ron Paul have long and consistent histories of peddling white supremacist ideology, racism, misogyny and homophobia as legitimate political commentary. And Brendan Eich agrees with their viewpoints and financially supports them, which totally disqualifies him as CEO of Mozilla.
Gert (and his supporters), do you also hate women, blacks and jews as much as you hate gays, and do you agree with Brendan Eich’s support of Patrick J. Buchanan and Ron Paul?
Patrick J. Buchanan asserted Anders Breivik, who murdered 77 people including 69 teens in Norway, “may have been right.” Buchanan called Breivik a coward, evil, and cold-blooded, and then proceeded to defend his twisted rationale for the killings: “As for a climactic conflict between a once-Christian West and an Islamic world that is growing in numbers and advancing inexorably into Europe for the third time in 14 centuries, on this one, Breivik may be right.” -Pat Buchanan
Pat Buchanan argued Hitler was an individual of “great courage.” That’s just one of the quotes that the Anti-Defamation League attributes to Buchanan in their compendium of offensive remarks from Buchanan over the years. In 1977, he qualified his labeling of Hitler as racist and anti-semitic by adding that “he was also an individual of great courage, a soldier’s soldier in the Great War, a leader steeped in the history of Europe, who possessed oratorical powers that could awe even those who despised him […] His genius was an intuitive sense of the mushiness, the character flaws, the weakness masquerading as morality that was in the hearts of the statesmen who stood in his path.” -Pat Buchanan
In a column sympathetic to ex-Klansman David Duke, Patrick J. Buchanan chided the Republican Party for overreacting to Duke and his Nazi “costume”: “Take a hard look at Duke’s portfolio of winning issues and expropriate those not in conflict with GOP principles, [such as] reverse discrimination against white folks.” -Pat Buchanan, syndicated column, 2/25/89
Writing of “group fantasies of martyrdom,” Patrick J. Buchanan challenged the historical record that thousands of Jews were gassed to death by diesel exhaust at Treblinka: “Diesel engines do not emit enough carbon monoxide to kill anybody.” -Pat Buchanan, New Republic, 10/22/90.
Pat Buchanan’s columns have run in the Liberty Lobby’s Spotlight, the German-American National PAC newsletter and other publications that claim Nazi death camps are a Zionist concoction.
Patrick J. Buchanan called for closing the U.S. Justice Department’s Office of Special Investigations, which prosecuted Nazi war criminals, because it was “running down 70-year-old camp guards.” -Pat Buchanan, New York Times, 4/21/87
“Rail as they will about ‘discrimination,’ women are simply not endowed by nature with the same measures of single-minded ambition and the will to succeed in the fiercely competitive world of Western capitalism.” -Pat Buchanan, syndicated column, 11/22/83
Actually, both of your are wrong. Ryan is wrong in general, but not in the case of John, because people who are only intolerant of intolerance have the right to be intolerant about that, but not other things.
But John is much more delusional and unjustifiably intolerant, because he refuses to recognize how intolerant he is about same sex marriage, and he’s unable to justify his intolerance with facts and valid arguments.
That kind of intolerance is completely unjustified, because same sex marriage itself is not in any way intolerant, and has absolutely no effect on John or anyone else, despite all their easily disproven claims to the contrary.
All the best arguments against same sex marriage have already been tried in court, up to the supreme court, and they have been shot down, disproven, and ruled to be meaningless, unimportant, false and unconstitutional.
You can legitimately complain about people being intolerant of your choice of who you love, and who you worship, and what color your skin is, and which baseball team you root for, but you have no right to expect people to tolerate your intolerance of other people.
The only justifiable form of intolerance is the intolerance of intolerance, and that is a well knows and agreed upon philosophical principle. A just society has the right to protect itself from intolerance that would destroy its institutions of fairness.
The tolerance paradox arises from a problem that a tolerant person might be antagonistic toward intolerance, hence intolerant of it. The tolerant individual would then be by definition intolerant of intolerance.
Michael Walzer asks “Should we tolerate the intolerant?”. He notes that most minority religious groups who are the beneficiaries of tolerance are themselves intolerant, at least in some respects. In a tolerant regime, such people may learn to tolerate, or at least to behave “as if they possessed this virtue”. Philosopher Karl Popper asserted, in The Open Society and Its Enemies Vol. 1, that we are warranted in refusing to tolerate intolerance. Philosopher John Rawls concludes in A Theory of Justice that a just society must tolerate the intolerant, for otherwise, the society would then itself be intolerant, and thus unjust. However, Rawls also insists, like Popper, that society has a reasonable right of self-preservation that supersedes the principle of tolerance: “While an intolerant sect does not itself have title to complain of intolerance, its freedom should be restricted only when the tolerant sincerely and with reason believe that their own security and that of the institutions of liberty are in danger.”
“To answer your question: Mozilla, unlike many employers, does not restrict what its employees can say. Now, whether those people who spoke out where right, or wise to speak in public, is a different question. But they will not lose their jobs over it.”
Except for this one time. But it’s totally never going to happen again, pinky-promise.
And pigs fly.
You go reading every single post/message from Mozilla and mozillians. ALL them start with a statement where the organization or the person takes distance from Eich and reaffirm Mozilla’s mission to reshape humanity (not to make software).
So you say in private they showed support to Eich and in public they took their distance? Even worse.
At this point you should worry of another thing: the tsunami of “politically correctness” is coming our way. It comes from the “anglosphere” and it will be enforced over the whole Europe soon.
Our only defense is that we are surrounded by our own past, the relatively clear perception of what has been passed by ancestors. But it gets dismissed every day and memories are fading.
“Used to” implies it changed and only validates the point that social accepted standards change as a factor of time. Meaning it is not a firm basis for equality or morality to be based upon.
That leaves personally subjective morality and views on equality which fail due to my case about. It makes no difference at all that their church doesn’t support it anymore. People do and therefore, by their equally valid opinion, anyone who thinks otherwise is a bigot and infringing on their freedoms.
Your post above does nothing to change the basic facts. Intolerance isn’t intolerance, inequality isn’t inequality. There is no absolute definition of these things and if people want their own views then they need to accept those of others equally. If they fail to do so then they have no justifiable basis to seek equality or tolerance.
Sorry, you’re wrong and there is no two ways about that.
What’s it like being so far up your own ass?
Gerv is refusing to answer my questions, and he is now threatening to censor me, which he has already done for one posting on the previous threat that points out that Brendan Eich financially supported racist, misogynistic and anti-Semitic candidates, including Patrick J. Buchanan and Ron Paul, and provides links to proof and many of their most vile and disgusting quotes. I have summarized them in a post above, because he refused to approve the original post that had a lot more quotes.
Gerv is lying that my postings do not contribute anything new, because nobody has mentioned Brendan Eich’s support of Patrick J. Buchanan and Ron Paul, and nobody has mentioned the fact that the Mormon Church redefined the meaning of marriage from their founder Joseph Smith’s original definition that included polygamy and pedophilia.
Gerv, if you censor this posting, it certainly proves my point, and I will publish it elsewhere. But if you don’t censor it, why don’t you stop making false accusations that I am attacking a straw man and not contributing any original material. I have read much of what you have written on your blog, and I am arguing against that, not a straw man.
Prop 8 was overturned by a court, it was passed by 52% of the vote. And that’s in California. What’s this you say about the majority of Americans supporting gay marriage?
Stop boring us with US politic. The community guidelines are clear and you should be leaving this at the door. No one has produced any evidence of wrong doing by Brendan within the Mozilla community. You on the other hand are way out of line and I think your pursuit of Brendan amounts to a hate crime.
Citation re the Buchanan thing: http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/apr/02/controversial-mozilla-ceo-made-donations-right-wing-candidates-brendan-eich
OK, so he wasn’t funding a racist homophobic antisemite *within* the mozilla community. I can rather see the point of view of people who say that this affects their opinion of him though.
[Declaration of interest: I’m Jewish and have a very low tolerance for antisemites]
Hold on, I thought this was supposed to be about upholding freedom of speech and not having people resign — not avoiding organizations that think that gay people should have equal marriage rights.
John: engage constructively or don’t engage at all.
What on earth does this have to do with anything?
I do not intend to get into a debate on this blog or in these comments as to the rights and wrongs of the marriage issue. That is _so_ not the point.
I agree that what I wrote was unintentionally ironic. But remember, I was not one of those calling for Brendan to go.
I think that’s a very well-written piece; thank you for linking to it.
Your argument is basically “I should be allowed to work to make the law conform to how I think the world would be best organized for the good of everyone, but you may not.”
(Just in case: saying “but you’re not working for the good of everyone, only for yourselves and people like you” is an ungrounded attribution of false motive. How dare you tell me what my motives are?)
Thank you for your thoughtful response. You can consider this blog post as public support for both Brendan and for freedom of speech and action. Whether and how we can get Mozilla back to a place where everyone can collaborate is something that we as a community will have to work out.
Don: please drop the martyr complex. Today is Sunday; this morning, while you were writing some of the 15 comments you have already published on to my blog, I was worshipping the Lord Jesus Christ, and spending time with my family and my guests.
WordPress has a filter which diverts comments with certain contents to the moderator queue; the reason one of yours seems to have ended up there is that you used terms like “pedophile” and other things which trigger it. There is nothing in that comment which adds to the debate, and you seem to have repeated much of it in other comments anyway, so I will not be approving it.
Suggesting that I am censoring or ignoring you because I didn’t spend my Sunday morning dealing with the comments approvals queue or replying to your pile of messages strikes me as displaying an enormous sense of entitlement.
Many of the things that you are outraged that “no-one has mentioned”, no-one has mentioned because they are quite irrelevant to the issue at hand. And then you’ve mentioned them anyway. Please consider them now adequately mentioned.
Thank you! I also am a Christian. I am very upset about what happened to Brendan Eich. However, I have used Firefox for many years and I will continue to use Firefox. I am a contributor on the support forum and I will also continue to help in any way I am able.
As for everyone else, please calm down. I’m an old hacker, a Mom, so it appears to me many of you are emotionally raw right now. Please give it five days before you make any rash decisions. Decisions based on raw emotion are always rash and usually lead to regrets.
John, you have proven my point that your argument is invalid and you are incapable of countering it logically, so I thank you for acting so childish, and I thank Gerv for not deleting your post, because it serves as an illustrative example of how totally unjustified and hateful your side of the argument is.
Now John, will you please calm down, stop throwing temper tantrums, and make your first attempt to address my points, or do you want to try to insult me again?
I expect that you’ll either be afraid to answer, or you’ll try insulting me again, which will drive home the point that your argument is completely bankrupt, and demonstrate what kind of a hateful ignorant person you really are.
But go ahead, try to counter my points with facts and figures and links to citations of objective scientific research. I would love to see you try.
But since John is incapable of supporting his own beliefs, he probably won’t try, and if he does try, he won’t be able to present any valid arguments, and he will probably hurl more insults at me. So I invite anyone who is more mature and intelligent and less hateful and childish than John to speak for him and counter my points, as well.
Thank you, Gerv, for not deleting his insult, and not deleting my posts.
Don’t you find it embarrassing that hurling insults like John has done is the best response anyone has to the points I’ve made?
I’m still puzzled why you are afraid to respond to my posts directly, yourself. I hope you’re more mature than John, but I know from reading your responses to all the other criticism of your hateful beliefs that have been written on your web site over the past few years, that you still can’t counter those arguments against your hateful beliefs.
But I would love to see you try to address my arguments, especially the philosophical point of the Paradox of Tolerance. Many great minds have thought about that over the years, and there is a consensus that it’s justified to be intolerant of intolerance.
How does that square with your complaints about how people are not tolerating Brendan Eich’s and your own intolerance?
Clearly your beliefs are intolerant. There is no argument about that. The best you have done is to point out that people who don’t tolerate your intolerance are hypocrites and there’s something wrong or ironic about not tolerating intolerance. But the consensus of the philosophers like Walzer, Popper and Rawles is that you are wrong. Do you have any additional insight to prove them wrong and show that society does not have the right to protect itself from intolerant people like you?
We’re not talking about social acceptance, we’re talking about Mormon religious dogma that they claim is the word and will of God. That’s not something that’s up for a vote, or even that human beings have any say in.
The fact of the matter is that the Mormon church’s main argument is that it’s wrong for society to change the definition of marriage. Yet THEY changed the definition of marriage, themselves! Presumably not in response to social pressure, but God told them that he changed his mind, if you can believe that.
Personally, I don’t believe that God changed his mind about the definition of marriage and told the Mormon Church to change theirs, because I believe Joseph Smith is a con man and a charlatan, as well as the objective fact that he is a polygamist and a pedophile.
But the point is that the Mormon Church is EXTREMELY HYPOCRITICAL when they complain about society changing the definition of marriage, after they did exactly the same thing.
The larger point is that no one religion owns the definition of marriage. There are religions that define marriage as including same sex couples, and there are religions that define marriage as being about the ownership and control of another (usually female) human being, not love. And marriage was around a long time before Christianity, so that particular religion has absolutely no claim to control the definition of marriage.
Another huge flaw in your argument is that who other people choose to marry has any effect on your marriage. You have no right to tell other people who they can and can not marry, especially if they don’t follow the same religion as you do.
All of the arguments that your side has attempted to make in court that gay marriage has any negative effect on society have been shot down by the courts, and in fact most of those arguments were extremely disingenuous and deceptive.
So please tell me if you have any arguments that have not already been shot down in court about there being anything wrong with same sex marriage, beyond your own personal beliefs that you have absolutely no right to impose on anyone else?
It has everything to do with this discussion about same sex marriage for several reasons, many of which I have just touched on in my most recent reply.
The Mormon Church was one of the biggest funders of Proposition 8. So it’s perfectly valid to point out their stupendous hypocrisy.
One of the most popular arguments against same sex marriage is that it’s wrong to change the definition of marriage, so of course it’s correct to point out that the Mormon Church did exactly the same thing.
It’s also quite relevant to point out that the Mormon Church lacks the moral authority to tell people how to run their lives, ESPECIALLY PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT MORMON, because their founder was a con man, a charlatan, a polygamist, and a pedophile.
I understand why you want to suppress this line of argument, since it completely undermines one of your most commonly parroted arguments that you use to attack gay marriage, but the fact is that the argument about changing the definition of marriage is totally wrong and unjustified for many reasons, not only because of hypocrisy, and not only because marriage was defined a long time before Christianity existed,
but also because it’s been a GOOD THING to change the definition of marriage from the terrible brutal definition that was originally written in the Christian bible.
Do you truly believe that women are property, who (or should I say “that”) should be subservient to their husbands, and stoned to death if they commit adultery? Or do you agree with me that society is much better off having moved beyond the original Christian definition of marriage?
Gerv, I’m really surprised and disappointed I had to explain all of this to you, and it wasn’t immediately obvious, since many people have pointed much of this out in previous posts on you blog over the years.
You must not read or comprehend what people write in response to your hateful believes, if you can’t figure out for yourself what this has to do with anything, after having had it explained to you so many times in the past.
Apparently the people who warned me that you had such a thick skull that no outside information could get through and affect your thought processes were correct, and that makes me sad, because I had more faith in you.
I think we owe Gerv a lot of thanks for setting up the dominos that led to Brendan’s fall, because the widely criticized and highly inappropriate message that Gerv posted to the public Mozilla mailing list about opposing same sex marriage in the UK started a huge internal discussion about this issue, which created the perfect storm when Brendan’s support of Proposition 8 came to light, which led to the current situation of Brendan resigning.
@sonoko: good advice.
I say this is a guy who has been writing software in Silicon Valley for 35 years:
Kid, you’ve got heart and brains. You’ll do well in this business. You just need to make sure you are working with a group where putting aside personal differences in favor or a common goal aren’t just words. I assure you there are lots of them here.
Brendan, after he deals with pain of betrayal he must be feeling, will be fine. He has many friends in the (real) valley and will have no problem recruiting top-notch people for whatever he chooses to do next.
Mitchell, given the the complete nonsense she is willing to put her name to while betraying the goal of an Open Web for the world in favor of a US political cultural battle, clearly has a great future as the President of an american university.
The one you need to take care of is you.
Am I reading well?
ORGANIZATIONS that think?
Organizations don’t think, each single person does.
Or I should better say each single person SHOULD think independently. Which again is not the case because in this world you either stay in line while marching with others or you are prosecuted.
About having people to resign, it happens when you get attacked by a “community” (read as “people who march in line”) and your partners and friends take distance from you and say “who? I don’t know him”.
And thanks for being (as far as I can tell) the only Mozilla Planet blogger with the courage to take comments on this subject.
You impress me.
The fact that these things can cripple an organization that SHOULD turn around developing software clearly shows that Mozilla is poorly organized and it is not about developing software any more.
In fact when you are focused on developing software you cannot afford and don’t want to lose the best tech people because a theoretical discussion about “same-sex marriage”, especially when the said best tech people always respected the organization guidelines about “diversity”.
Instead if you are focused on promoting some “social/political agenda” the only thing that matters is if people march alongside you or on the opposite front.
If I was Eich I would ask myself why and when I allowed people who care more of the political agenda than software to take over Mozilla.
Sonoko, I had to look on the dictionary to write this: the problem is that what happens now at Mozilla is just “the straw that broke the camel’s back”. In my own language it is something like “the drop that makes the bowl to overflow”.
About using Firefox:
First thing to say is Mozilla is not committed to the desktop any more, having joined the “caravan of love” about touch screens and mobile devices. Mozilla is about FirefoxOS now, that is entirely a different thing.
Second thing to say is yes, we can use any product from Mozilla but in “leecher mode”, that means to use it until it fits our needs, sucking blood from Mozilla without supporting or evangelizing or anything. Mozilla severed the connections with a lot of people, probably not understanding how it looks from “overseas”, because they care more to keep connections with some other people from the said “rainbow community”.
Last thing: even the expression “I am christian” thing works only for Americans. Since it does not make any sense elsewhere, I would stop using it. For example, in Europe almost everybody is “christian” but nobody identify as one but a very little minority. That because being “christian” is part of the general culture more than a belief. In other areas of the Globe being “christian” has probably a negative meaning.
1 Personal expressions of Christian concepts curtailed on Planet
(Not likely to hear a Latin representation of the “Pange Lingua” in Easter week)
2 A long battle over the wording of the manifesto (code of conduct)
(Mozilla caved on _almost_ every demand)
3 And now this sad incident.
It’s obvious that Mozilla has taken sides,
and hasn’t been neutral on Political/Cultural matters for some time.
For example, why would one blogger start off a factual representation
of events with:
“I’ll begin with the obligatory disclaimer: I fully support marriage equality.”
Why oh why would that be obligatory.
Might just be poor wording, or putting up a protective shield??
Not sure when disagreement got equated to a personal attack,
but you can see it all over, not just in Mozilla.
Corporations by nature are selfish entities, your value depends
on your contribution, but Mozilla touted itself to be different.
That charade in now gone.
The board, IMO should have refused Brendan’s resignation and
made a public statement that they would not bow to outside pressures.
As a matter of fact, I haven’t see _any_ public statements from them.
(other than some weak references to ‘Well, maybe he wasn’t the right man for the job’)
I’ll keep using Firefox, and supporting the community effort on Thunderbird,
simply because I like those products.
But please don’t offer me a t-shirt or badge.
I would be ashamed to wear it.
Events from 1977 are relevant for Mozilla now?
What bad things did Brendans grandpa do?
I am writing to you to express my outrage at the outright persecution and grossly unfair treatment of CEO Brendan Eich. Mozilla folded like a chair to pressure groups. In a country that values as the very first Amendment of our Constitution the right to free speech and the free exercise of religion; to see people persecuted by a vicious vocal minority whose intention is to abrogate the rights of anyone with whom they don’t agree is something that *everyone* should stand against. The Constitution doesn’t include a right “not to be offended” by someone else’s beliefs or expression of those beliefs. I am sick of these extremists who want to trample on the rights of anyone that says anything they don’t like, or who doesn’t agree with their political ideology. And for an organization (Mozilla) whose ideals are supposed to embody the very idea of an open exchange of ideas and viewpoints in the pursuit of better communication worldwide, it is an irony so damning it’s beyond the pale.
I will be uninstalling Firefox and I hope many others do the same. It is time for people of good conscience to stand up to the bullies and tyrants who hide behind ideals that they clearly do not believe in order to control the free expression of ideas and association that are the foundation of liberty in our society (the US). The shame is on them and no one else. But I guess the spineless will continue to bow and scrape in front of spoiled brats who unleash their tantrums in public forums.
Well done Mozilla, you have completely lost all credibility in the eyes of the world. I think many entities around the world will have to think carefully about whether, or not, they should trust Mozilla.
A Former User
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Gerv, as the number of comments grew, your very thoughtful blog came to be dominated by the comments. People read the comments, but they seem to have forgotten what you wrote. At least they do not seem to have taken it to heart.
To use Robert O’Callahan’s words, it is now dominated by people who are simply picking over every utterance looking for something to be angry about, and are trying to fuel anger in others.
Sooner or later this always happens on the Internet. Maybe it’s time to close the blog to comments.
VanillaMozilla: I think you make a good suggestion.
Comments on this blog post are now closed. Thank you to everyone for participating; I’m sure I will have more to say in the future, and comments will be open on future posts.
I have pruned one or two of the more seriously off-topic comments. I make no apology for that. In doing so, a few seem to have become orphaned and appended themselves below; not sure why that is.
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