Atypical Confessions of an atypical contributor


I, your favorite hypocrite, traitor or whatever people might call me, thought about writing this for a long time. Just to give a different perspective on things. I have been a contributor for a rather long time (5 years to be exact). I confess that I am not a regular contributor. These things are mostly thoughts that I have, and I am going to be blunt about them. If people can’t deal with it, so be it. And this is not gonna be about Directory Tiles, even though I am eager to write my thoughts about them, but, no, not this time.

#1 – I hate the word ‘Mozillians’.

The word “Mozillians” suggest that people contributing to the Mozilla project are all the same. All one kind. It takes the focus away from potential differences in personality or culture. In my opinion, these differences need to be valued. For we are all different. And the fact that we contribute doesn’t take that difference away.

There’s another reason why I hate that word: “Mozillian” seems like “Human”. A status that, once acquired, lasts forever and cannot be taken away. However, what if I don’t want to be part of that group anymore? I think the term “contributor” is much more suited for that. It still gives some means of escape from the whole thing.


#2 – Products mean nothing to me.

Given there’s so much focus on products nowadays: I don’t like that. Products mean nothing to me. It’s just a name for what? Bunch of code? Initiatives? Philosophical thoughts? Honestly, do we need a name for everything? If we think about it, our product is not so different from other products. The browser is written in some programming language and evolved over years. Same for other products. That doesn’t make it ‘awesome’. That just means it’s evolved. Product names are just for identification, and that’s marketing. I don’t have anything to do with marketing reasons. I have my own mind.

Are we humans awesome? You’d assume it depends on the point of view. And YES: IT DOES!


#3 – I don’t like direction.

I am someone who values individuality. I don’t like direction. Giving direction means potentially saying “I know more than you do” or “I am better than you”, therefore I tell you what to do, and I will never accept that. Not when it comes to a such diverse group of people as the contributor base.


#4 – Good things take time

I don’t like for things being rushed. That’s not how I work. There have been so many things in the past years that have been rushed and then improved and improved or abandoned for reasons. Why not improve them and release them when ready? Unfinished projects do not make us more popular with the userbase.


#5 – Controversial discussions are good discussions

On a related note: In order for discussions to get most healthy, it’s important for them to be vivid. Vivid discussions means that any stand point is accepted. It might get a little heated from time to time, but that way we can ensure that there are a lot of thoughts covered in the discussion. I hate it when community doesn’t even have a say in what gets decided.


#6 – I hate the “1 million mozillians” initiative.

It’s hard to manage 1 million people. And frankly, I doubt Mozilla can do this. Let’s think about this: People are people, they have their own mind, their own ideals, their own hobbies, their own opinion. You can find more potential reasons in my comment here:

What do they need 1 million contributors for? Hint: It’s not to benefit the people themselves.