Shape where Mozilla is headed

This was sent as an email to vouched Mozillians yesterday, but I wanted to cross-post here and open up for discussion and questions.

Dear Mozillians,

During the first half of this year, alongside growing Firefox and new technology and product areas, we are undertaking a number of interrelated special projects that will help shape where Mozilla is headed and connect the energies of our diverse, global community.

The purpose of this email is to give an overview of these projects and to invite you to participate – your voice and ideas are important. Please read all the way to the bottom to learn how you can get involved (if you aren’t already).


Let me take a moment to situate these projects (this diagram might help).

Today we have:

The Mozilla Manifesto – principles that articulate our vision for the Internet.

Mozilla’s Mission – our purpose and primary objectives.

Both of these are enduring, not time-bound and driven by our core beliefs. They are also at quite a high level of abstraction – many different directions, strategies and projects can fit underneath them.

We also have overall and product strategies and goals that are generally updated each year, with specific objectives created quarterly.

6 special projects to help shape where Mozilla is headed

In the first half of 2017 we are adding to the existing pieces above with a few special projects that will further increase clarity about who we are, how we work together, what we are focusing on, and key strategies we will employ.

  1. True North - a tangible, actionable bridge between our collective long-term, enduring core beliefs as laid out in the Manifesto and Mission, and our immediate product and technology strategy and areas of focus

  2. Mozilla’s Worldview - an articulation of aspects of Mozilla that identifies who we already are and how we work together, but that aren’t clearly articulated in the Mozilla Manifesto

  3. Mozilla Corporation (MoCo) Open Innovation Strategy - recommendations for how MoCo can better invest in and execute on being “open” in our product and technology work

  4. Community Participation Guidelines v2 - a vision for how diverse people will participate in Mozilla’s communities, along with behavioral expectations, processes to raise concerns, and consequences for unacceptable behavior

  5. Diversity and Inclusion for Community Participation - a set of priorities for the next 2-3 years on how we will improve practices in communities to create a truly open and inclusive Mozilla where a diversity of contributors can thrive and grow to their full potential

  6. Membership Model exploration - evaluating if a membership model, premium services or philanthropic models are viable for creating deeper engagement with users around our core issues, delivering long-term value to our users and delivering financial sustainability to Mozilla

How you can be involved

Broad participation by diverse Mozillians in all of these projects is important. This includes having a good mix of volunteer contributors and collaborators. Here’s how you can be involved in any or all of these projects:

A) Contribute to research: You will soon receive an email from Ruben Martin (some of you know him as Nukeador) inviting you to participate in research about our communities and contributors. Please complete the survey contained in that email as it is a big part of the Open Innovation project.

**B) Engage directly: **Follow the links above to each project to understand how to get involved. Each is set up a bit differently.

C) Join the conversation: Subscribe to “Watching” the Mozillians category on Discourse (see the drop-down icon in the top right corner directly under the menu bar). We will be hosting a number of conversations there in the coming weeks, and it is the place where updates will be posted.

D) Step up: Consider applying to be part of the Communities Advisory Group of ~20 volunteer Mozillians, a group we are assembling specifically to engage with this set of projects (it will be dissolved afterward). This is for you if you are willing and able to spend about 10 hours a month for the next few months to be more regularly and deeply consulted on these projects. You should have passion along with some experience and skill in contributing to strategic topics and conversations. Applications are due by May 5th.

I am personally excited about these projects. The discussions they will inspire are substantive, and the resulting added clarity about Mozilla’s future will help us rally together as Mozillians.

Thank you in advance for your involvement and voice, and please don’t hesitate to reach out to me with questions, comments or concerns (

Best regards,


George Roter, Open Innovation Team


WRT Firefox, one of the features that has made and continues to make Firefox a solid browser is the add-ons and the ability to manage them. Due to what I believe to be shortsightedness, the feature of management of add-ons was removed from the website a year ago. (See discussion thread here: ), this after a fix was put in place not 7 months before (based on my efforts) to improve this functionality, only to have the plugged pulled (see original bug fix here: )

A temporary fix was developed but stopped last Dec 2016, leaving users stranded in the ability to manage add-on collections. (see fix here: )

I urge you to at a minimum consider restoring this type of functionality, as it is crucial to making Firefox add-ons manageable. Otherwise, Firefox loses one of its key advantages over all other browsers, the flexible and versatile management of add-ons.

The following specific post from the first thread highlights the usefulness of this feature:

I also urge that this functionality be improved somewhat, by simply adding the few missing sorting capabilities. But even restoring the original management functionality would go a LONG way to restoring Firefox’s usefulness.

I am not sure of all the details (my focus has not been on graphics), but I think where the internet itself is headed is toward VR and there does seem to be more firefox could contribute. Something I would love to see Mozilla do is push a project to enable VR mode for the entire browser, which is simple in principle… the same split screen output algoritm that is applied to youtube and other apps within android VR, but applied on the output of the browser just before it is sent to the sceen… there is no need for a gyroscope and if you use a wireless keyboard and mouse and use desktop versions of webpages through Firefox mobile… I want that so badly… theres nothing in principle that should stop that from being possible today, right?