Foundation to Corporation

Mozilla moves Firefox, other products, under for-profit umbrella, interesting, and ultimately for the better I think.

5 replies on “Foundation to Corporation”

Yeah, so now Mozilla moves into the field of for-profit production. I hope this doesn’t cause Mozilla to start making MS/IE like products…that would be sad. I’m not sure what makes it so neccesary to create a Corporation either really. They’ve been doing great as a Foundation for so long now.

Foundation to Corporation

Many have commented on the establishment of the Mozilla Corporation, a for-profit subsidiary of the folks who bring us Firefox. I was particularly interested in remark from Matt of WordPress fame that the move is “interesting, and ultimately for the b…

My first question is, how does this affect – or is it affected by – the numerous, widespread contributions of open source developers to the projects? Just a thought.
I can definitely agree that it’s interesting. I don’t know about “ultimately for the better.” I won’t be one of the doomsday kind that are just going to declare them sellouts and destined to crash and burn; on the same tack, I do feel a little betrayed that such a wonderful foundation suddenly feels it has to change its position on the ladder this way, when the recognition they got for being what they were was, in my opinion, far more deserved than any they will get from this move.
At the moment, it doesn’t look as though we have to worry about the product itself shifting gears too much, as Jonathan pointed out. Not yet, anyway. From what I’ve read, it appears that their goals are basically the same, but of course there is no way to predict whether those motives will have to shift given changes in their situation as a business where one must make revenue to stay alive, even if it is not the primary goal.
Though the tax incentive is a pretty big reason, this makes me think that given the number of large open source projects out there, someone should take a harder look at being less ambiguous on the tax policies regarding them as non-profit organizations, especially when engaged in agreements with for-profit organizations (like the Google situation mentioned).
It’s like that friend of yours, the one you admired for being really independant, suddenly dressing like the mainstream so she can talk to some of the nicer popular girls without the social complications. You know she’s the same person – her personality hasn’t changed; though she smiles a little different, she still likes to do the same things. But you can’t be sure she’ll stay that way. The outfit’ll get to her, whether it ends up being a big change or just a little one…