Mozilla Foundation

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Mozilla Foundation
Mozilla logo.svg
Founded July 15, 2003; 14 years ago (2003-07-15)
Founder Mozilla Organization
Type 501(c)(3)
20-0097189
Registration no. C2543436
Focus Internet
Location
Origins Mozilla Organization
Products Mozilla Firefox web browser
Mozilla Thunderbird e-mail client
Mozilla Firefox OS mobile operating system
List of Mozilla Foundation products
Key people

Mitchell Baker
(Executive chairman)

Mark Surman
(Executive director)
Subsidiaries Mozilla Corporation
Mozilla Messaging
Revenue
$421.3 million (2015)[1]
Website mozilla.org

The Mozilla Foundation (stylized as moz://a) is a non-profit organization that exists to support and collectively lead the open source Mozilla project. Founded in July 2003, the organization sets the policies that govern development, operates key infrastructure and controls Mozilla trademarks and copyrights. It owns a taxable subsidiary: the Mozilla Corporation, which employs many Mozilla developers and coordinates releases of the Mozilla Firefox web browser and Mozilla Thunderbird email client. The subsidiary is 100% owned by the parent, and therefore follows the same non-profit principles. The Mozilla Foundation was founded by the Netscape-affiliated Mozilla Organization. The organization is currently based in the Silicon Valley city of Mountain View, California, United States.

The Mozilla Foundation describes itself as "a non-profit organization that promotes openness, innovation and participation on the Internet."[3] The Mozilla Foundation is guided by the Mozilla Manifesto, which lists 10 principles which Mozilla believes "are critical for the Internet to continue to benefit the public good as well as commercial aspects of life."[4]

History

Entrance to the Mountain View office which is home to both the Mozilla Foundation and the Mozilla Corporation
Former office next to the Googleplex shared by both the Mozilla Foundation and the Mozilla Corporation until July 2009

On February 23, 1998, Netscape created the Mozilla Organization to co-ordinate the development of the Mozilla Application Suite.[5][6] When AOL (Netscape's parent) drastically scaled back its involvement with Mozilla Organization, the Mozilla Foundation was launched on July 15, 2003 to ensure Mozilla could survive without Netscape. AOL assisted in the initial creation of the Mozilla Foundation, transferring hardware and intellectual property to the organization, employed a three-person team for the first three months of its existence to help with the transition, and donated $2 million to the Foundation over two years.[7]

Initially, the remit of the Mozilla Foundation grew to become much wider than that of mozilla.org, with the organization taking on many tasks that were traditionally left to Netscape and other vendors of Mozilla technology. As part of a wider move to target end-users, the foundation made deals with commercial companies to sell CDs containing Mozilla software and provide telephone support. In both cases, the group chose the same suppliers as Netscape for these services. The Mozilla Foundation also became more assertive over its intellectual property, with policies put in place for the use of Mozilla trademarks and logos. New projects such as marketing were also started.

With the formation of the Mozilla Corporation, the Mozilla Foundation delegated all their development and business-related activities to the new subsidiary. The Mozilla Foundation now focuses on its Webmaker initiative (which aims to raise the level of users' Web Literacy) as well as on governance and policy issues. The Mozilla Foundation owns the Mozilla trademarks and other intellectual property, which it licenses to the Mozilla Corporation. It also controls the Mozilla source code repository and decides who is allowed to check code in.

Subsidiaries

Mozilla Corporation

On August 3, 2005, the Mozilla Foundation announced the creation of Mozilla Corporation, described as "a taxable subsidiary that serves the non-profit, public benefit goals of its parent, the Mozilla Foundation, and that will be responsible for product development, marketing and distribution of Mozilla products."[8] It also handles relationships with businesses, many of which generate income. Unlike the Mozilla Foundation, the Mozilla Corporation is a tax-paying entity, which gives it much greater freedom in the revenue and business activities it can pursue. From 2004 to 2014, the majority of revenue came from a deal with Google, which was the default search engine in the Firefox web browser. In November 2014, Mozilla signed a five-year partnership with Yahoo,[9] making Yahoo Search the default search engine for Firefox in the US. Yandex Search is the default for Firefox in Russia and Baidu continues its role as the default in China.

Mozilla China

Beijing Mozilla Online Ltd (Chinese: 北京谋智网络技术有限公司), a.k.a. Mozilla China, is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Mozilla Corporation[10] with its headquarters in Beijing.

Financing

The Mozilla Foundation is funded by donations and "search royalties".

Initial funding in 2003 came from AOL, which donated US$2 million, and from Mitch Kapor who donated US$300,000.[11] The group has tax-exempt status under section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. tax code, though the Mozilla Corporation subsidiary is taxable.

In 2006, the Mozilla Foundation received US$66.8 million in revenues, of which US$61.5 million is attributed to "search royalties" from Google.[12]

From 2004 to 2014, the foundation had a deal with Google to make Google Search the default in the Firefox browser search bar and hence send it search referrals; a Firefox themed Google search site was also made the default home page of Firefox. The original contract expired in November 2006. However, Google renewed the contract until November 2008 and again through 2011.[13] On December 20, 2011, Mozilla announced that the contract was once again renewed for at least three years to November 2014, at three times the amount previously paid, or nearly US$300 million annually.[14][15] Approximately 90% of Mozilla’s royalties revenue for 2014 was derived from this contract.[16]

In November 2014, Mozilla signed a five-year partnership (effective December 2014) with Yahoo!, making Yahoo! Search the default search engine for Firefox in North America. The default search engine in Russia will be Yandex, and in China, Baidu.[9] Due to Mozilla's financial release timetables, the results of the Yahoo! contract will not be public until November 2016.

In November 2017, however, Mozilla announced[17] that it was switching back to Google as the default search engine. This represented an early termination of its Yahoo partnership.[18]

People

The Mozilla Foundation Board of Directors has eight members:[19]

Originally, Christopher Blizzard had a seat on the board, but he moved to the Mozilla Corporation Board of Directors when it was established; Joichi Ito joined the Mozilla Foundation board at that time. He left the board in 2016. Bob Lisbonne and Carl Malamud were elected to the board in October 2006.

Mark Surman is the foundation's executive director.

The Mozilla Corporation also has a number of employees, many of whom worked for the foundation before the establishment of the corporation.

The Mozilla project has traditionally been overseen by a committee known as mozilla.org staff; some individuals on that committee later became Foundation or Corporation board members or employees.

Donations

In 2006, after a request from Theo de Raadt of OpenBSD for funding from corporate entities which make a profit through the use of OpenSSH in their packaged distributions, the Mozilla Foundation donated US$10,000 to de Raadt and OpenBSD for OpenSSH development. The funds donated came from money earned through the income provided by Google. While the target of this request were corporations such as Cisco, IBM, HP, and Red Hat (which all sell operating systems containing OpenSSH but had not donated to its continued development before), the Mozilla Foundation found that without OpenSSH, much of the work done by developers would be through insecure and unsafe methods and thus gave the funds as a thank you.[22]

At the end of 2010, the Mozilla Foundation partnered with Knoxville Zoo in an effort to raise awareness about endangered red pandas. Two red panda (a.k.a. Firefox) cubs born at the Knoxville Zoo have officially become a part of the Mozilla community. The cubs are named Spark and Ember by online voters and Mozilla broadcast a 24-hour live video stream of the cubs for several months.[23][24][25][26]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ "Mozilla Foundation and Subsidiary: 2015 Independent Auditors' Report and Consolidated Financial Statements" (PDF). Mozilla Foundation. 
  2. ^ "Mozilla Foundation and Subsidiary: 2014 Independent Auditors' Report and Consolidated Financial Statements" (PDF). Mozilla Foundation. 
  3. ^ "The Mozilla Foundation". Mozilla Foundation. Retrieved 2011-01-23. 
  4. ^ "The Mozilla Manifesto". Mozilla Foundation. Retrieved 2011-12-16. 
  5. ^ "Netscape Announces Mozilla.org, a Dedicated Team and Web Site Supporting Development of Free Client Source Code". Netscape.com. 1998-02-23. Archived from the original on July 6, 1998. 
  6. ^ "Netscape Accelerates Communicator Evolution With First Release Of Next-Generation Communicator Source Code To Developer Community Via mozilla.org". Netscape. Archived from the original on 2002-11-05. Retrieved 2011-12-06. 
  7. ^ "mozilla.org Announces Launch of the Mozilla Foundation to Lead Open Source Browser Efforts". Mozilla Foundation. Retrieved 2011-12-06. 
  8. ^ "Mozilla Foundation Reorganization". Mozilla. 2005-08-03. 
  9. ^ a b "New Search Strategy for Firefox: Promoting Choice & Innovation". The Mozilla Blog. 
  10. ^ 谋智网络是Mozilla Corporation在中国的全资子公司,我们是Mozilla大家庭中非常重要的一份子——火狐浏览器 | 职业机会
  11. ^ "Mozilla.org announces launch of the Mozilla Foundation to lead open-source browser efforts". Mozilla Press Center. Retrieved 2016-01-03. 
  12. ^ "2006 Independent Auditor's Report and Consolidated Financial Statements" (PDF). 
  13. ^ "Mozilla Extends Lucrative Deal With Google For 3 Years". Techcrunch.com. 2008-08-28. Retrieved 2012-10-29. 
  14. ^ Swisher, Kara (2011-12-22). "Google Will Pay Mozilla Almost $300M Per Year in Search Deal, Besting Microsoft and Yahoo". All Things Digital. Dow Jones. Retrieved 2012-01-18. The search giant will pay just under $300 million per year to be the default choice in Mozilla’s Firefox browser 
  15. ^ "Mozilla and Google Sign New Agreement for Default Search in Firefox". Blog.mozilla.com. 2011-12-20. Retrieved 2012-10-29. 
  16. ^ Mozilla's 2014 Audited financial statement, page 21
  17. ^ "Firefox Features Google as Default Search Provider in the U.S., Canada, Hong Kong and Taiwan". Mozilla Blog. Retrieved November 21, 2017. 
  18. ^ "Google's back: It's Firefox's default search engine again, after Mozilla ends Yahoo deal". ZDNet. Retrieved November 21, 2017. 
  19. ^ "About the Mozilla Foundation". Mozilla Foundation. Retrieved 2017-04-12. 
  20. ^ "New Mozilla Foundation Board Members". Mozilla Foundation. Retrieved 2017-06-16. 
  21. ^ "Why I'm joining the Mozilla Board by Nicole Wong". Mozilla Foundation. Retrieved 2017-06-16. 
  22. ^ Peereboom, Marco (2006-04-04). "Donations Update". OpenBSD Journal. Retrieved 2011-12-17. 
  23. ^ "Meet the Newest (and Cutest) Mozillians". Mozilla Foundation. Retrieved 2011-01-23. 
  24. ^ "Firefox Live Blog with Knoxville Zoo". Mozilla Foundation. Retrieved 2011-01-23. 
  25. ^ "@cubcaretaker on Twitter". Mozilla Foundation. Retrieved 2011-01-23. 
  26. ^ "Firefox live". Mozilla Foundation. Retrieved 2011-01-23. 

References

  • "Mozilla Foundation Forms New Organization to Further the Creation of Free, Open Source Internet Software, Including the Award-Winning Mozilla Firefox Browser". Mozilla Press Center. Retrieved August 3, 2005. 

External links

  • Official website
  • About the Mozilla Foundation
  • 2005 presentation about the Mozilla Foundation
  • Press release about the creation of the Mozilla Foundation
  • Meeting Minutes from the Weekly Mozilla call
  • Mozilla Labs
  • Mozilla Research

Coordinates: 37°23′17″N 122°04′58″W / 37.38792°N 122.08284°W / 37.38792; -122.08284

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