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Mozilla The Internet

The Mozilla Foundation 493

gemal writes "We're very pleased to announce the creation of the Mozilla Foundation, a non-profit organization that will serve as the new home for mozilla.org. The Mozilla Foundation will continue mozilla.org's work of coordinating the development of the Mozilla codebase. With an independent non-profit as the legal home for Mozilla, we will also promote the distribution and adoption of Mozilla applications and technologies. In addition, we will raise funds to ensure Mozilla's long-term survival." Update: 07/15 21:47 GMT by T : Yablo writes "MozillaZine is running a blurb about how since earlier today, when the Mozilla Foundation was created, AOL has laid off all the Gecko developers. Ex-mozilla.org has a list of the casualties."
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The Mozilla Foundation

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  • Sayonara (Score:5, Funny)

    by tomblackwell ( 6196 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:38PM (#6444280) Homepage
    We're pleased to be dumping Mozilla, er, forming the Mozilla Foundation. This money pit, er, worthy cause is something we'd love to see the back of, er support.
    • by markv242 ( 622209 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @01:01PM (#6444512)
      This may have been modded +5 Funny, but in all honesty it's a very telling/scary story. AOL is shedding Mozilla. Yes, they've chipped in $2M to help run the foundation, but what happens in a few years when the Foundation has A) run out of money, and B) hasn't gotten any significant donations?

      Let the "Mozilla is dead" postings start in 3..2..

      • and B) hasn't gotten any significant donations?


        Now that it is specifically a Non-Profit organization, donations are just that. Assuming they did the whole legal tax-deductible non-profit group corporation, people will be much more inclined to donate.

        Companies making their corporate standard browser a free browser and getting a tax write-off by supporting the browser will be prevelant, I think.
      • by WPIDalamar ( 122110 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @01:14PM (#6444637) Homepage

        People may not contribute as much money to the foundation, but maybe they'll be more inclined to contribute more code. It's easy to give some IP back to a non profit, it's hard to give IP to AOL.
      • by hendridm ( 302246 ) * on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @01:23PM (#6444718) Homepage

        From the parent:

        > what happens in a few years when the Foundation has A) run out of money, and B) hasn't gotten any significant donations?

        From the site:

        > AOL, IBM, Sun Microsystems, Red Hat, and other companies will continue to support Mozilla through the Foundation.

        I wouldn't worry. Me thinks these companies et al will stop supporting Mozilla when Internet Explorer has a user base of <5%. These are big competitors of Microsoft. Either way, if the money dries up, I would be surprised if people still didn't continue to develop Mozilla (even if it's at a slower pace).

        There will always be alternatives.

        • by 4of12 ( 97621 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @03:04PM (#6445874) Homepage Journal

          AOL, IBM, Sun Microsystems, Red Hat,

          Note that these competitors of Microsoft don't have:

          • US$4e10 cash reserves
          • revenue cows like Windows & Office to bring in money without lifting a finger
          AOL has been scrambling to compete with MSN, surviving on razor-thin margins (Time Warner is the bigger, stronger part of the company).

          Sun can't afford to develop competitive successors to its UltraSPARC hardware in a timely fashion. Meanwhile, Lintel servers are eating into the UNIX server business, making the market much smaller than it was once (the flip side is that Lintel make Wintel look expensive, even if Wintel is cheaper than Solaris/SPARC). These days, the one reason to go with Sun over Linux on clusters is for HA 64-way high throughput machines connected to SANs. Despite the margins on that class of machine, not everyone needs one, and there are ferocious competitors like IBM, HP and SGI with which to contend.

          Red Hat is only now barely getting profitable, mainly selling Linux services. They certainly don't have oodles of money to throw around.

          IBM is really the only financially strong player in the whole deck.

          Despite my pessimistic tone, I'm a Mozilla (and now Firebird) user and wish the project success. I will continue to be a Mozilla advocate because I want to see open standards on my computer instead of yet another road to getting ruled.

          • by Azureflare ( 645778 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @08:04PM (#6448773)
            One thing that really surprises me (And I mean REALLY surprises me) is the fact that AOL Time Warner doesn't tout Mozilla more. I mean, if people knew that Firebird had excellent popup blocking and other features IE should have, people would switch in an instant! I moved my whole family over to Firebird, and they love it, even though it's still 0.6! They love the simplicity, and they especially love the popup blocking. They don't use Internet Explorer at all anymore, and I think this will continue, especially since Microsoft is going to wait until Longhorn for the next IE upgrade.

            That's another thing; there are many issues with IE, as has been noted by many people (CSS, transparent .png, etc. etc.) not to mention popups. I just can't see why people would choose IE if they knew what firebird offered.

            I can't help wondering, if people just got the word out, more people would use mozilla, and thereby mozilla would get more money in it's coffers. If mozilla can get a relatively large user base (Say, 10-20%) then I would hope they wouldn't have a problem getting funds.

            • Especially in regards to pop-up blocking, remember that AOL/TW depends on advertising in many areas of its corporate structure. Pop-up blocking is NOT an area that AOL/TW wants to tout, for this reason. Good for the consumer, yes ... but the consumer isn't the primary source of income for them.
      • So AOL have decided to throw in their lot with Redmond and use a browser that will not be updated again (unless you buy Longhorn). On the other hand they could have had a browser that complies with all the standards and is continually being improved. I despair, I really do, but it was obvious this was going to happen as soon as they got the cash from MS.

        Shed a tear for poor old Netscape - the Internet as we know it wouldn't have existed without it, and it was killed off as much by (proven illegal) busine

        • > isn't the sum of $2m bugger all in real terms?

          It is. A developer with a nominal salary of $50k each (not too high, really, for a good developer) costs about double that once you factor in the taxes the employer has to pay on the salary (FICA, etc), the benefits the employee gets (health insurance, etc) and such sundry items.

          In real terms, a single decent developer probably costs about $120k per year.

          So the $2 million is something, but more money will have to get raised if the mozilla foundation act
      • Parent is funny but I don't think this is a matter of doom and gloom at all. All the big-name IT companies will continue to support MS alternatives, IBM alone could afford to run Mozilla to secure a great Linux browser that isn't WM-specific. Makers of embedded systems, industry groups, ISPs, all can afford a few bucks to run the foundation and probably are more likely to provide support when there's no partisan link to AOL-TW.
    • Re:Sayonara (Score:4, Insightful)

      by chundo ( 587998 ) <[gro.amsgnoj] [ta] [ymerej]> on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @01:17PM (#6444665)
      I think this is a big positive for Mozilla. I've always been worried that AOL's lack of dedication to Mozilla and Netscape would lead to its demise. The creation of an independent organization to manage the project (and own all IP, trademarks and associated domain names - thanks AOL!) is huge.

      AOL may be pleased to "dump" it. But I'm pleased they are too. In addition to the autonomy, perhaps other ISPs (Earthlink, etc) may be more willing to adopt Mozilla as their default browser now that it's disassociated with AOL.

      It's too popular and useful to die. The foundation will continue to be supported by the major Linux players (with developers, hardware and money) just like Linux itself is.

      -j
    • Re:Sayonara (Score:3, Interesting)

      by tenchiken ( 22661 )
      Exactly.

      To the Mozilla Developers. Take this opportunity to be radical. Let's go back and view what the browser is and what it could be. I suggest that they take a look at things like:
      DashBoard [nat.org].
      Haystack [mit.edu]
      and Echo [sixapart.com].
      Information begs to be consolidated and made useful. We can do more with the browser then just view static stateless pages.
  • ODP (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Dynamoo ( 527749 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:39PM (#6444293) Homepage
    And how about it being the new home of the Open Directory Project [dmoz.org] too? Just a thought..
  • by JoeBuck ( 7947 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:40PM (#6444306) Homepage

    Does this mean that Netscape (rather, AOL-Time-Warner) is withdrawing its support? Will they still be providing facilities, network connectivity, etc. or will the Mozilla Foundation have to raise all that on its own? Will Netscape be providing any money to the Mozilla Foundation?

  • Wow (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Plutor ( 2994 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:40PM (#6444308) Homepage
    This is nothing but a Good Thing(TM). Congrats to the Mozilla team on their (apparent) independance. In other news, check out the redesigned web page [mozilla.org].

    Isn't it ironic that the top cells don't render the way they meant in Mozilla 1.4? They shouldn't be using tables for layout!
    • The new layout is nice (better grouping of information, and I especially like the direct interface to Bugzilla), but what caught my eye was that 1.4 final is out now. I had been using /.'s Mozilla sidebar to keep me up to date on current version releases. It's still stuck 1.4rc3. With a large part of the readers actively following Mozilla, I'm surprised /. let their "up-to-date" information stagnate.

      -Cyc

      • by Plutor ( 2994 )
        1) I guess you missed the article [slashdot.org].

        2) The slashbox is likely based on an RSS feed from mozilla.org. If anyone's at fault, it's the Mozilla team for not updating their feed.

        3) The fixed 11pt font on mozilla.org is actually the worst part of all. I finally get around to upgrading to Phoenix 0.6 and this is the reward I get? Unreadable text? Yucch.
    • Re:Wow (Score:4, Funny)

      by jeremyds ( 456206 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @01:21PM (#6444703)
      From the http://www.mozilla.org [mozilla.org] source:

      @import url("/frontpage/nav4Sucks.css");

      This wouldn't happen to be a reference to Netscape Navigator 4, would it?
    • Re:Wow (Score:3, Interesting)

      The new web page looks nice, much more "commercial-software-like", much more user friendly (gets the more confusing open source stuff and lesser-used programs further down the page).

      One thing I just noticed is the new(?) Firebird logo. Doesn't it look like a prettier Quake logo, or is it just me?
  • by The Evil Couch ( 621105 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:41PM (#6444315) Homepage
    The Mozilla Foundation will also promote the distribution and adoption of our flagship applications based on that code. AOL, IBM, Sun Microsystems, Red Hat, and other companies will continue to support Mozilla through the Foundation.

    I guess Mozilla's ready to actively try to knock IE down.

    • Well, unfortunately the companies mentioned didn't have a particular stake in web browsers before now. AOL lost theirs the instant that the jumped into bed with Microsoft, IBM never really had one of their own, Sun had "HotJava", which was what .. HTML 3.0 compliant? RedHat wrote a lot of cool stuff for Gnome 1.1, but never anything that was to compete. This group is cool, but will they actually understand what they're doing enough to do it better than it's been done so far?
      • they don't need to understand what they're doing. all they need to do is give them money (which they've done) and bundle moz with their products. if AOL starts shipping their silver spam platters with moz instead of their own browser, word about moz is going to spread damn fast and IE will instantly be threatened.
        • too late... (Score:3, Interesting)

          by axxackall ( 579006 )
          ... AOL will never switch from their own existing browser, which is based on IE, to their own new browser, which may be based on Mozilla. It's too late. Their customers already used to use Internet with all that content that is displayed fine on IE, including all those plugins. With Mozilla they will be pissed off as most of plugin-based content will be broken or it will crash Mozilla. And that will hurt AOL's business. And that is the reason that AOL customers will never see Mozilla. At least untill Mozill
    • Well... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Kjella ( 173770 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @01:02PM (#6444525) Homepage
      I guess Mozilla's ready to actively try to knock IE down.

      The technical aspects aside, I don't think the companies are in this for winning a war on Microsoft. But they do want there to be alternatives so IE can't exercise (read: abuse) monopoly power, particularly since the browser is the primary control of the Internet experience influencing all kinds of other services (searches, default bookmarks, passport integration etc.)

      They're interested in supporting Mozilla to ensure it stays a viable alternative, but I hardly think they'll use more money than they have to in order to compete against a "free" product. "free" in the meaning of "at no apparent cost to Joe Sixpack" /preemtive anti-flame strike. Personally, I'll stick to Opera (ID'ing as Opera too) as my primary browser, just personal preferance.

      Kjella
    • by r00k123 ( 588214 ) <borenste.student@umass@edu> on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @01:04PM (#6444551)


      Mozilla will never knock IE down.

      Why?

      Because I know HUNDREDS of people that refer to IE as "the internet".

      If the IE shortcut gets deleted? "My internet is gone."

      You can't fight the internet guys...sorry.

      -Ben

      • by autechre ( 121980 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @01:36PM (#6444817) Homepage
        I guess the question is: If you replaced their shortcut to IE with a shortcut to Mozilla that used the IE icon, would they notice? There are themes for Mozilla which are designed to make it look identical to IE. OK, so they would wonder where all the popops went, but other than that, could someone such as this tell the difference?

        (Yes, I know that there are a small percentage of sites out there that are brain-dead and REQUIRE IE, but if my parents never come across them, I'm betting many other people don't either. If you believe Jakob Nielson, users encountering such a site would just go find another one anyway, unless they needed it for work, banking, etc.)

        [And no, I didn't trick my parents like that. They're sentient enough that I can explain to them why to use Mozilla instead of IE, and they like it better anyway.]

      • If the IE shortcut gets deleted? "My internet is gone."

        You say that like it's a bad thing if these folks can't get on the internet any more.

      • by forwhomthebelltrolls ( 670539 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @03:00PM (#6445813)
        Because I know HUNDREDS of people that refer to IE as "the internet".

        If the IE shortcut gets deleted? "My internet is gone."


        I've had Mozilla Firebird as my default browser on my home windows box since the first alpha release of Phoenix. At this time I removed the IE shortcut from my wife's desktop and replaced it with a Phoenix shortcut and then told her to use that for web access in the future.

        Recently, I had to reinstall the box, and forgot to replace her shortcut, and guess what... She said "My interet is gone". So what you say is true, but it doesn't just apply to IE.

        FWIW: I told my wife to use IE until I got round to fixing the shortcut, she later complained that IE was not as good as the "normal internet" she was used to using.
  • Hm. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MerryGoByeBye ( 447358 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:43PM (#6444332) Journal
    Now that there'll be an official, legal, centralized authority, does this mean that the plugins/modules will finally work with each other?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:43PM (#6444339)
    AOL can now write off on its taxes the development money it spends on mozilla as donations to a nonprofit?
  • Two Questions: (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Skyshadow ( 508 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:45PM (#6444362) Homepage
    I have two questions:

    1. Why should I give money to Mozilla when I don't give money to and other open-source software I use? Why do they need it? What will they use it for?
    2. Would said contribution be tax-deductible (not all non-profit donations are)?

    Unfortunately for them, they're competing for my donated dollar against the EFF, the ACLU and (this year) whoever tries to unseat George Bush Jr. They need to make a lot better case for themselves if they're going to warrent a piece of that pie...

    • by The Evil Couch ( 621105 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:49PM (#6444405) Homepage
      if you donate $1,000 or more, you get a Mozilla Dinosaur plushie doll.
    • Re:Two Questions: (Score:2, Interesting)

      I was also wondering about the tax status of this new organization. If they ARE tax exempt (I don't know the rules for that, so someone fill me in) could this be just an easy way for AOL to save money? Make part of your company that was non-profit already officially non-profit and then write off all your budget for it as a donation.

      I'm not sure what I would think about that. It seems sneaky...but it's good for mozilla...hmmm...i'm torn....
      • Re:Two Questions: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Lionel Hutts ( 65507 )
        This is an issue, but not much of one.

        To the extent they actually spend money, it would have been deductible to AOL anyway as a business expense.

        The question comes up when they give more in a year than they spend. That lets them (1) accelerate the deduction to the present for spending in the future (provided they make the donation now) and (2) let the money accumulate and earn interest tax-free, since it will be owned by a tax-exempt.

        So it is an issue, but other people do get away with similar things.
    • Re:Two Questions: (Score:5, Insightful)

      by bytesmythe ( 58644 ) <.moc.liamg. .ta. .ehtymsetyb.> on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:56PM (#6444460)
      A better question would be:
      "Why don't you give to the other open-source software projects?"

      I know it seems like a pain, but pick a few of your favorites (maybe 3 to 5) and start setting aside a little money. Collect your spare change, or sell something on eBay, or whatever. Then donate 5 to 10 bucks to each of the projects.

      I would expect you'd want to feel reasonably certain the developers will put the money to good use (buying helpful books or equipment), rather than dipping into the project fund to buy pizza and beer. Still, I imagine that once you've selected some worthy projects and sent them a little money it will make you feel good to have helped, and maybe you'll even be more likely to do it again in the future.
      • Re:Two Questions: (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Skyshadow ( 508 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @01:05PM (#6444554) Homepage
        A better question would be: "Why don't you give to the other open-source software projects?"

        I figured someone would ask that.

        First, you should know that I'm by no stretch of the imagination a rich man [slashdot.org]. I can pay my bills, make my car payments (I don't drive an expensive car), set aside a little money but that leaves me pretty much broke.

        Given that, I have to carefully prioritize where my money goes. Last year, I contributed to the ACLU, the EFF and to my public radio station, KQED. These are all good causes which, in my opinion, do demonstratively good things with my money and they all are tax deductible donations.

        That's what any OSS project or company needs to contend with when they look at me for money. To be included on my list, then, they'd better (A) prove they need it, (B) prove they're using it for substantially good reasons and not wasting it, and (C) preferably set things up so I can take a tax deduction for it.

        I don't see anything wrong with looking at it that way -- if I had another $5 a paycheck to give away, it'd go to the people on my list, anyhow...

    • by David Hume ( 200499 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:59PM (#6444495) Homepage

      2. Would said contribution be tax-deductible (not all non-profit donations are)?


      From http://www.mozillafoundation.org/press/mozilla-fou ndation.html

      The Mozilla Foundation has been incorporated as a California public benefit corporation and is
      seeking to obtain 501(c)(3) status as a non-profit organization.


      (emphasis added). Since the Mozilla Foundation is applying for 501(c)(3) status, contributions are not yet tax deductible. Which raises the interesting question, i.e., should 501(c)(3) status be granted? In particular, should contributions by AOL to the Mozilla Foundation be tax deductible when AOL will use any work performed by the "public benefit corporation" in its Netscape product? Is this a way for a for profit corporation to fund research in a tax-deductible way?

      Perhaps a counter-argument is that given the license used for Mozilla (I forget which it is; it may be important), *anyone* could use the work... but could anyone use it in for-profit software?

      I haven't thought this throught, but it might be an interesting issue.

      • > in its Netscape product?

        You're assuming there will be a Netscape product.

        This is highly doubtful in light of today's events.
    • Why should I give money to Mozilla when I don't give money to and other open-source software I use? Why do they need it? What will they use it for?

      There is absolutely no reason for you to donate. Nobody is forcing you to do so. On the other hand, if everybody applies the same philosophy, most OSS projects will depend solely on the goodwill and the mutable live conditions of their developers Or on companies looking for a cheaper/better software development process).

      This is very different from donnating to
  • by SpaceRook ( 630389 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:47PM (#6444377)
    I think Mozilla needs some PR people. I was watching C-SPAN the other day and the issue was spam. Lots of callers were complaining about pop-up windows as well. I really wanted to tell them about Mozilla, but it was a taped show :(

    Anyway, there is a lot of frustration out there and the Mozilla people really need to get the word out that they have a competitive product. Place some ads in the weekly magazines, some big newspapers, and get a buzz going. Open up a Paypal account that we can donate to so Mozilla can get an ad in the New York Times.
    • by bartdecrem ( 193647 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:57PM (#6444472)
      We just launched Mozilla Marketing and a marketing mailing list. So we're going to start marketing Mozilla's products much more proactively. Please join us in this effort by joining the new marketing mailing list [mailto].
    • I've brought this up before, but where's the professional looking attractive banner ad graphics for Mozilla? I'd slap one of those up on my website (I've got pages that attract more than just slash-geeks) and get the word out that way...

      I'm not so artistically minded, so I don't want to create it, but I'll certainly display it!
      • Re:free advertising! (Score:5, Interesting)

        by asa ( 33102 ) <asa@mozilla.com> on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @01:57PM (#6445079) Homepage
        I've brought this up before, but where's the professional looking attractive banner ad graphics for Mozilla? I'd slap one of those up on my website (I've got pages that attract more than just slash-geeks) and get the word out that way...

        I'm not so artistically minded, so I don't want to create it, but I'll certainly display it!


        We will be ramping up our marketing efforts over the coming months. In the mean time you could always use plain text and link to http://www.mozilla.org/releases

        --Asa
    • by gosand ( 234100 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @01:47PM (#6444960)
      Anyway, there is a lot of frustration out there and the Mozilla people really need to get the word out that they have a competitive product. Place some ads in the weekly magazines, some big newspapers, and get a buzz going.

      Mozilla needs to start advertising - in popup ads. What better way to get your message across? "Hate pop-up ads like this one? Do you know there is a browser out there that allows you to block pop-up ads? It is called Mozilla, and we have a lot of other great features too. Mozilla is absolutely free! Try it out today. [url to mozilla.org]"

      Yeah, it is a little like spammers sending you an email on how to stop spam, but I like the idea.

  • Not a clever move (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    The site describes Firebird as "The Best Browser, Bar None", with a similar claim for Mozilla. Not only is this confusing to a newcomer, it's also a bad idea; Moz 1.4 is WAAAY more reliable than Firebird (great as the latter is), and I wouldn't recommend it to newcomers.

    When Firebird reaches Moz's level of stability, THEN it might be wise to push it to new users. But Mozilla gives a better impression.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:48PM (#6444382)
    ..is the "BSD is dying" guy racing to find the Search and Replace function in his text editor.
  • $2M kiss-off (Score:5, Informative)

    by davidflanagan ( 645311 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:49PM (#6444399)
    The new foundation gets $2M over 2 years from AOL. Plus, Mitch Kapor kicks in $300K and becomes chair of the foundation. AOL also continues to supply infrastruture and "domain names". (How generous!)

    I'd say AOL wants to be rid of Mozilla. I wonder where this leaves Netscape? Is Netscape 7.1 the last browser release from this former browser company?

  • Any ideas on how/if Mozdev [mozdev.org] will be affected by this? (short/long term?)
  • by johnnyb ( 4816 ) <jonathan@bartlettpublishing.com> on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:56PM (#6444470) Homepage
    One thing that the Mozilla Foundation could do to raise money is set up a "Cobrand Support Center" where people can contract them to create and support branded versions of Mozilla.

    If the price were not too high, I imagine a lot of technology companies could impress their users with a branded web browser that's better than Internet Explorer.

    "As a complimentary service to our customers, we offer them the SuperTechnologyCompany Web Browser which has features that prevent spam and popups..."
    • Here's another related idea; Someone comes up with a cool feature for Mozilla but they can't figure out how to fund it. So the cool ideas should be added to a page with the amount of money it will ostensibly cost to implement them (Dedicated development, patch management, hosting, testing) listed next to them. If a company donates the necessary money then their name is attached to the feature for all time, perhaps even with their corporate logo stuck into its preferences screen or something.

      This will of c

  • Browser-Aid:
    A benefit for Mozilla featuring Niel Young and U2.

    -t
  • by malia8888 ( 646496 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @12:58PM (#6444481)
    From the article: We're fortunate to start with significant seed funding, and we expect to spend the bulk of it on salaries for key staff members and technical contributors.

    I liked that they said their money was going for salaries. This is refreshingly honest. Most press releases from organizations steer away from the fact that everybody needs a little $$ to survive.

    This is better than trying to make us believe that first they save the whales, then go for profitability..

  • PayPal ?? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by matsh ( 30900 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @01:05PM (#6444556) Homepage
    So, where can I donate PayPal money to this foundation?
  • Yeah, right ... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Chromodromic ( 668389 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @02:00PM (#6445117)
    Starving, illiterate children in the world and people are going to give money to AOL-backed, Netscape-backed Mozilla which competes directly with Microsoft? The only thing brilliant about this is that Bill Gates is slapping his forehead wondering how he didn't think of making a charitable organization of Longhorn.

    Firebird rules. Thunderbird rules. But they're software. I'll be giving my non-profit dollars to the local food bank, as usual.

    And since non-profits are exempt from the Do Not Call list, does that mean I'll be getting phone spam from AOL?
  • by Rich ( 9681 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @03:58PM (#6446537) Homepage
    I have to say, I find it rather surprising that Mozilla should need 2 million dollars to write a brower, and even more surprising that they're asking for people to donate even more. The mozilla project has had more full time developers than we've ever had working on KDE, yet konqueror is not far behind (oh, and we did write a desktop too...).

    If the mozilla foundantion would like to sponser the forthcoming KDE conference (eg. to discuss how we could make use of any reusable parts of their code base) I'm sure they'd be most welcome.

    Rich.
  • What They Left Out (Score:3, Interesting)

    by istartedi ( 132515 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @05:00PM (#6447221) Journal

    , we will also promote the distribution and adoption of Mozilla applications and technologies. In addition, we will raise funds to ensure Mozilla's long-term survival

    We will organize as a tax exempt charity to provide a nice tax writeof for AOL-TW, while continuing to further their corporate objectives against Microsoft.

    To be fair, they do mention that they are seeking 501(c)(3) status at the bottom of the release.

    Anybody else sense a trend? Open Source "charitable" orgs as a corporate tax shelter? Once again, you have to hand it to RMS--he was at the cutting edge on this. The FSF was perhaps the first Open Source nonprofit. Something like Mozilla.org will allow corporations to obtain the tax writeof without having to buy into the political stand of the Free Software movement.

    It's a win-win for corporations. They can place the unprofitable portions of their business into the nonprofit. They can influence the nonprofits with their money. They can effectively employee people for less than minimum wage.

    It will be interesting to see how long it takes legislators to wake up to this, and call for charitable org reform. I wager that at least one generation (20 years) will pass and get fat off these exemptions before anything happens.

  • by babbage ( 61057 ) <cdevers@cis.uso u t h a l .edu> on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @05:02PM (#6447235) Homepage Journal
    gemal writes "We're very pleased to announce the creation of the Mozilla Foundation, a non-profit organization that will serve as the new home for mozilla.org. The Mozilla Foundation will continue mozilla.org's work of coordinating the development of the Mozilla codebase. With an independent non-profit as the legal home for Mozilla, we will also promote the distribution and adoption of Mozilla applications and technologies. In addition, we will raise funds to ensure Mozilla's long-term survival."

    What an enthusiastic way of saying "we all just got fired."

    Or to put it in context, maybe they all got tshirts saying:

    Our company gave up [wired.com]
    their lawsuit against Microsoft
    and all we got were
    these lousy pink-slips

    What grand news... :-(

  • by sulli ( 195030 ) * on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @05:46PM (#6447669) Journal
    You didn't really submit an editable page to slashdot, did you?! Whoo boy, if I were the editor of that one, I'd password protect it real quick. (Unless you want to get the new contact info of Mr. Goa Tse.)
  • by Bruha ( 412869 ) on Tuesday July 15, 2003 @09:29PM (#6449301) Homepage Journal
    I really didnt see this one coming but considering how AOL now is going to bundle IE with their aol software

    (Funny how the courts tell MS to unbundle it from the os.. so MS goes and gets it bundled into what people consider their pc's os on a huge # of pc's)

    Wonder if AOL would warm up to Mozilla if the states sued AOL to unbundle a browser with their software and give people a choice of what to use.

    Since netscape is no longer a viable alternative I can only hope that Mozilla and to a lesser degree Opera become a prevalent browser across all forms of operating systems.

    However there is still the problem to be fixed where 90% of the webpages out there are IE compatible on a first basis and all other browsers come in second for support.

    Course Linux Gaming Warcry [warcry.com] I busted my butt to the bone to get it to works across Moz,Opera, and IE. And I'm just a flunky html geek :)

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