Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Corporate Mozilla gets thumbs-up from industry

Filed under
Software

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
ZDNet UK

More in Tux Machines

Oracle Desperate

Leftovers: OSS and Sharing

Security Leftovers

  • Friday's security updates
  • Judge Says The FBI Can Keep Its Hacking Tool Secret, But Not The Evidence Obtained With It
    Michaud hasn't had the case against him dismissed, but the government will now have to rely on evidence it didn't gain access to by using its illegal search. And there can't be much of that, considering the FBI had no idea who Michaud was or where he resided until after the malware-that-isn't-malware had stripped away Tor's protections and revealed his IP address. The FBI really can't blame anyone but itself for this outcome. Judge Bryan may have agreed that the FBI had good reason to keep its technique secret, but there was nothing preventing the FBI from voluntarily turning over details on its hacking tool to Michaud. But it chose not to, despite his lawyer's assurance it would maintain as much of the FBI's secrecy as possible while still defending his client. Judge Bryan found the FBI's ex parte arguments persuasive and declared the agency could keep the info out of Michaud's hands. But doing so meant the judicial playing field was no longer level, as he acknowledged in his written ruling. Fortunately, the court has decided it's not going to allow the government to have its secrecy cake and eat it, too. If it wants to deploy exploits with minimal judicial oversight, then it has to realize it can't successfully counter suppression requests with vows of silence.
  • Researcher Pockets $30,000 in Chrome Bounties
    Having cashed in earlier in May to the tune of $15,500, Mlynski pocketed another $30,000 courtesy of Google’s bug bounty program after four high-severity vulnerabilities were patched in the Chrome browser, each worth $7,500 to the white-hat hacker.

Gentoo "Choice Edition" Released, Slackware & Tumbleweed Latest

The big news today was the release of Gentoo 20160514, dubbed "Choice Edition" because it is especially good, cool, and excellent. In related news, Calculate Linux received an updated release and Computer Business Reviews answers, "What is Ubuntu?" Dimstar posted the latest changes to Tumbleweed and Slackware-current got some new updates. Laurent Montel answered Andreas Huettel's post on Akonadi must die and Fedora 24 sports new font improvements. Read more