Mozilla’s uncertain future, Frank Hecker

Frank Hecker writing a backgrounder for people outside the tech industry:

By now everyone in the tech world has heard of the major layoffs at the Mozilla Corporation, the organization that creates and distributes the Firefox web browser. (For those who haven’t heard, about 250 people were laid off, about a quarter of the work force.) Lots of people in the tech world have spoken their piece about the significance of this event and what it means for the future of Mozilla, the web, and so on.

Rather than write something of and for the tech world, I wanted to briefly explain what’s going on for those of my readers who don’t know HTML from XML, and who are more familar with the worlds of nonprofits and regular old businesses. I used to work for Mozilla, and have more knowledge of it and (I hope) insight into it than most people, but I’ve been gone from Mozilla for ten years now. Thus what I write below is based on observing it from a distance, like seeing an old friend whose life has long since diverged from mine.

We’ve been having various discussions in chat about this topic.

We are thinking about our own place in the corporate to open source spectrum, and where we stand as we promote and help power #webnative and #open-web apps, and who are allies, partners, and supporters can be.

Calling Mozilla dead isn’t helpful — but at the same time we have to prepare for it, and what we might do about it.