Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Corporate Mozilla gets thumbs-up from industry

Filed under

The foundation announced on Wednesday morning that it is creating a wholly owned subsidiary, the Mozilla Corporation, which will give it more freedom to generate revenues through commercial activities.

James Governor, an analyst at RedMonk, praised this move and said it is likely to increase the use of Mozilla's open-source products, such as the Firefox browser, by businesses.

"I think it's a reasonably significant step. If Mozilla wants to do business with corporate entities, it needs to be a corporate entity--corporations want to do business with corporations," said Governor. "Almost all open-source organizations that are successful have some commercial organization around them."

Michael Goulde, an analyst at Forrester Research, said having a commercial organization around open-source software tends to give businesses the confidence to migrate from proprietary software.

"We're seeing an evolution of open-source projects from pure voluntary efforts with uncertain long-term viability to models that make it easier for customers to place strategic bets on open-source software," said Goulde. "Mozilla Foundation's move is very much in tune with this direction, using the commercial organization to develop a revenue stream that can support a professional staff that can manage and drive the project into the future."

The response of the Mozilla community so far has generally also been positive, with a number of postings on Mozilla employees' blogs praising the move. Mozilla contributor David Hallowell said it seems to be a good move, adding that any concerns that the organization may change the software's license conditions are unfounded.

"I'm sure some people will be worried for the future of the Mozilla source code, but there is nothing to worry about in this case. The code is published under an open license with a huge number of contributors who would all have to give consent for the license to be changed," Hallowell said.

Though some in the open-source community may have ideological issues with Mozilla's commercial move, RedMonk's Governor expects few will be critical.

"I don't think many open-source geeks will hold up their hands in horror that Mozilla is going commercial," he said.

By Ingrid Marson

More in Tux Machines

Linksys WRT router gains faster SoC, more RAM, OpenWrt

Linksys has launched a “WRT1900ACS” router that updates the AC version with a faster dual-core, 1.6GHz SoC, twice the RAM (at 512MB), and OpenWrt support. In early 2014 when Linksys resurrected the hackable Linksys WRT54G WiFi router in a new WRT1900AC model, the Belkin subsidiary said the the Linux-based router would also support the lightweight, networking-focused OpenWrt Linux distribution. With the new WRT1900ACS, Linksys is making life easier for OpenWrt lovers by providing full, open source OpenWrt support out of the box. Read more

New Renesas SoCs offer 1.5GHz, 1080p, GbE, USB 3.0, PCIe

The RZ/G updates the Renesas Electronics RZ line of system-on-chips, which includes the Linux-ready RZ/A1 line of single-core, 400MHz Cortex-A9 SoCs, as well as an RZ/T line that runs an RTOS on a Cortex-M4 microcontroller. The new devices are aimed at a wide range of Linux- and Android embedded products including hand-held medical devices, digital signage, and industrial, home appliance, and office equipment devices that use a human-machine interface (HMI), says the Japanese semiconductor firm. Read more

Fedora OpenID issues resolved

It is very likely that you have seen the issues we had with logging in to Fedora Infrastructure services, or other websites that use Fedora OpenID to authenticate you. Read more

Mozilla Continues Moving Away From NPAPI Plugins

Firefox continues making progress on loosening web developers' and users' dependence on NPAPI plug-ins with a goal still in place to remove support for most NPAPI plugins by the end of 2016. Read more