Mozilla foundation's new CEO causes concern due to anti-gay-marriage views

by
in legal on (#3HA)
story imageThe guy co-founded Mozilla and served as Netscape's chief architect . He invented Javascript . He's been Mozilla's chief technical officer for 9 years. On March 24th, Brendan Eich became the Mozilla Foundation's CEO - and members of Mozilla's staff promptly demanded that he step down . Why? Because Brendan Eich is anti-gay-marriage.

The BBC , CFO World , and others are reporting that online dating site OK Cupid is notifying users of Firefox of the views of the Mozilla Foundation's new CEO - and requesting that they use another browser to access the site. It's not quite a boycott - users can still click through to access the site while using Firefox - but it's definitely a statement. This isn't the first time this kind of thing has happened. Hobby Lobby , Chick-Fil-A , and Costco have all experienced similar backlashes.

Mark Surman, XO of Mozilla, says:
"I worry that we do a bad job of explaining ourselves, that people are angry and don't know who we are or where we stand. And, I worry that in the time it takes to work this through and explain ourselves the things I love about Mozilla will be deeply damaged."

At what point do a person's political, personal, or religious views outweigh their qualifications for leadership - and does using Firefox in any way imply support of these views?

Re: Disagreement (Score: 1)

by kerrany@pipedot.org on 2014-04-04 13:09 (#Z9)

Dude, I'm happy. I have a great life. Doesn't mean I can't speak up for what I feel is right. If that's trolling, then call me a troll. I'll own it.

If you have a look at Mozilla's post on the matter, you'll see that Mozilla pretty much went, "We made a mistake about that guy." The man stepped down as CEO. That doesn't mean he's not still economically doing okay. (In my experience, guys who get nominated as CEO of a major company don't live paycheck to paycheck like the rest of us.) It means he's not right to lead an inclusive, open, and diverse Mozilla. I'd be fine with him in a tech job where he doesn't work managing other people who might be gay. Being a bigot doesn't make you unemployable. It makes you "not management material". (Mind you, I wouldn't work with him in the workplace if he couldn't behave in day-to-day interactions, but that's called "being rude", not "being a bigot".)

Incidentally, I wouldn't have minded if Mr. Eich had stepped up and explained why he either doesn't feel that way anymore, or still feels that way but it's honestly not discriminatory. If you check out his post on the matter, he did not do that. He instead chose to continue holding on to whatever he believes (he's never really articulated it in public) and to step down. I'd argue that shows principles, albeit the kind that involve shooting oneself in the foot. I can respect those, even if I can't respect the beliefs which prompted them, so the whole matter is something of a wash respect-wise.

Yeah, I still feel justified for attacking a CEO verbally over his beliefs. He appears to think that a portion of the population deserves less happiness than another portion of the population. That's not really defensible. I'm sure there are still racists out there and that some of them run corporations, and if I knew who they were, I'd attack them verbally too, yes, in the hopes that they'd step down. I think basic human kindness is a mark of competence. If you can't pull that off, if you can't at least keep your intolerances under your hat, you aren't good enough to be CEO.

My nose is firmly in my business here, friend. I love Firefox. I love gay people. That guy was mucking in my business by becoming CEO of Mozilla while being anti-gay. He could've declined the position. He could've articulated something, anything that wasn't "I still feel this way but it's fine, no really, cuz I promise I won't screw up." He did not show the competence to run Mozilla. I'm happy he stepped down, both for Firefox and for gay people.

Finally:
troll trōl/
verb
gerund or present participle: trolling
1. fish by trailing a baited line along behind a boat. "we trolled for mackerel"; carefully and systematically search an area for something. "a group of companies trolling for partnership opportunities"
2. informal - submit a deliberately provocative posting to an online message board with the aim of inciting an angry response. "if people are obviously trolling then I'll delete your posts and do my best to ban you"
3. sing (something) in a happy and carefree way. "troll the ancient Yuletide carol"
4. Brit. walk; stroll. "we all trolled into town"

Once again with the highlight of the appropriate definition.

My purpose in posting this story was not to elicit an angry response. It was to elicit a reasoned, intelligent debate concerning whether or not this guy was actually good for Mozilla. I'm the angry one here. I'm the one feeding the trolls. I'm doing it because I think Pipedot needs more chatter, and because I really do feel passionately about this sort of thing. Sorry, this fails your definition. You, on the other hand... you really do seem like you'd just like to have some anger spilled your way. Why is that?
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