Fri, August 30, 2002

Mozilla bites the hand that feeds it?

Tony Davis complains (with much profanity) that All Mozilla does is steal Netscape’s thunder. Well, yeah. Read eWeek recently?

Tony says:

I am sick and tired of Mozilla…. Yes, Netscape makes bad decisions regarding problems that should be obvious, but their motivation is in the right place; to make money to pay for engineers…. Netscape engineers are paid to do things that no one else would do (if they weren’t paid for it). Period. Engineers who checkin patches composed of hundreds of files with thousands of lines of code. No kid working after school in his basement is going to do that…. Oh, and the majority of code contributed to Mozilla.org comes from Mozilla engineers PAID for by Netscape.

All Mozilla does is steal Netscape’s thunder. They release a product that is in reality Netscape 7.0…. If Mozilla.org had never released a browser with pop-up blocking in it (no matter how cool that is, and no matter that it doesn’t work correctly - it breaks Netscape Radio and several other features) no one would be using that same feature to slam Netscape.

But Mozilla’s not Netscape, right? Let’s be frank: Netscape 7 is getting slammed because it deserves it. Instead of focusing on the customer, Netscape 7 annoys the customer. I don’t want a dozen AOL advertisements sprinkled around my system. Adding them will not improve your chances of gaining my business. I do want popup ad blocking. The differences between Mozilla and Netscape are few. Mozilla, however, doesn’t annoy me (other than the UI problems that it shares with Netscape 7), and is ahead of Netscape in features I want (popup ad blocking, incremental find, chatzilla, javascript debugger). Mozilla just shames Netscape 7 by pointing out that it didn’t have to be frustrating.

The motivation for Netscape 7 seems to be desperation. Blake pointed out good ways to make money from the browser. Hint: they benefit the user in convenience not annoyance.

Blake Ross censored     Happy new year!