Friday, September 21, 2007

SUMO knowledge base to be live September 28!

Thanks to all the hard work of the SUMO community, the SUMO knowledge base will be going live to the public on Friday, September 28th!

We will initially roll-out the knowledge base with links from blog posts and one link from the current Firefox support page. We will be testing the stability and scalability of the site while getting valuable feedback on the support. After the initial testing and feedback phase, we will begin to roll out the site to a wider audience.

Thanks to everyone who has contributed thus far. It has been an amazing team effort! If you want to get involved, visit our "get involved" page.

FYI-- we will have a timeline public for the forums and the live chat by the end of next week.

Welcome David Tenser!

Please welcome David Tenser, our new SUMO Project Manager! We are all very excited to have David working on the SUMO project and back in the Mozilla family.

David is a longtime contributor to Mozilla and the Firefox and Thunderbird support sites,
authoring major parts of help content from the early days of the Foundation. Originally from Eskilstuna, Sweden, David has a BS and MS informatics and computer science. David was most recently Chief Software Engineer at Emsize AB in Sweden, where he led the development of supply chain software in the packaging industry. He recently participated in the Mozilla Memory bank project-- you should check out his conversation with them.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Updating the update page

As you likely saw when you upgraded to the most recent version of Firefox, we show you a landing page to tell you that you have updated to the latest and most secure version of Firefox. We have also traditionally used that page as a way to communicate to you (and all the other users), most often about add-ons. We think that page could use a little work....

Below you will find the screen shots of the new versions of the page. Please check them out and give us your feedback.

Our primary audience is people who have not tried add-ons before; either because they have never heard of them or they don't quite understand what and how useful they are. We hope to use the learnings from this effort to continue to improve how we communicate the "customization" benefit of Firefox across all of our properties.

We will be testing two versions of the update page. The first version is similar to our current update page, but with a design, copy and UI changes. Please note that with both versions of the page, we have included the "release notes" to tell people what changed when they updated Firefox as well as an easy way for them to go to their homepage if they are not interested in trying out add-ons.

The goal of our second page (below) is to introduce the user to specific add-ons from the start. We think that even if these specific add-ons aren't appealing, the user will quickly "get" what an add-on is and will be interested in seeing more.

This page is the "landing page" that users will click through to if they are interested in seeing more add-ons. This page will also have a link to the full add-ons site. We will be testing two different versions of this page: one that shows 6 add-ons to users and one that shows 10. For all pages that show add-ons, we will be rotating add-ons through and tracking to see which ones were downloaded the most often.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

SUMO meeting postponed to Friday at 3pm pacfic time

Sorry for the late notice, but this week's SUMO weekly meeting has been postponed to tomorrow at 3 pm pacific time.

Looking forward to our call tomorrow!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Please give us feedback on the forum home page mock-up

We have been having lots of back and forth about the design of the SUMO forum home page. After much discussion and feedback, we have developed this mock-up:

For a general reference for comparison, please check out the SUMO homepage:

Goals of this page:
1. To ensure that the user has searched through the knowledge base.
2. To get the user to search through the forum to find an answer to their problem.
3. If they can't get their answer in 1 or 2, we want to make it easy for them to ask their question (we are currently missing a good explanation of how the forum works-- maybe that is a call-out box that we link to-- any ides?)
4. Make it easy for people to log-in and/or track their current questions

I would appreciate your thoughts and feedback here.

To get involved with the SUMO project, check out our contributor page.

Join us for our weekly SUMO project meetings

This will be a weekly, public call to discuss the progress of the SUMO project. Please join us!

Thursday from 2:00 pm - 2:45 pm pacific time

Phone call details:
  • California: 650-903-0800 then extension 91
  • Toronto: 416-848-3114 then extension 91
  • Toll-free: 800-707-2533 then password 369
Then, enter your bridge number : 280


Friday, August 17, 2007

Introducing our Firefox Support leadership team

As a result of all the hard work of the support community, the Firefox Support Working Group has officially transitioned to the SUMO team. I am very excited to announce our SUMO leadership team:

David Tenser has been hired as the Firefox Support Project Manager. David is a long-time Mozilla volunteer and was responsible for much of the original support documentation for Mozilla (all the way back to the Phoenix days). David is joining us from Sweden, where he most recently served as a Chief Software Architect.

Chris Ilias, Jason Barnabe and Lucy Connor will join the SUMO leadership team as leaders of the knowledge base, forums and live chat, respectively. Chris, Jason and Lucy have not only been active support volunteers for many years, but have shown tremendous dedication to SUMO and are responsible for much of the progress so far.

Please join me in thanking David, Chris, Jason and Lucy for all their work and welcoming them to their new roles.

As a part of the new SUMO leadership team, I will be scheduling a weekly SUMO call that will be open to the public. I will post more details on the date and call-in info once it has been scheduled.

Update on status of
We have been running performance testing on our current tikiwiki implementation as well as comparison tests for mediawiki and drupal. This data should give us a good understand of the scalability of our current implementation. We will publish the results early next week.

Also, we need your feedback on the forum design. Check it out here:
username: forum
password: design

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Enterprise Working Group Call Wednesday morning


We’re planning our second call for Wednesday, August 8th at 10:00am Pacific, 1:00pm Eastern, 17:00 UTC. Here’s the meeting details:

  • 650-903-0800 or 650-215-1282 x91 Conf# 280 (US/INTL)
  • 1-800-707-2533 (pin 369) Conf# 280 (US)
  • IRC - - #ewg

The theme is "Wishlist." Please feel free to update the Wishlist page before the call.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

We need your feedback on the Firefox support site alpha

Thanks to the tremendous work of the Firefox support community, the SUMO alpha is now live at

We need your help to kick the tires of the new site and to tell us whether or not you think the content will be helpful for the average Firefox user. To give feedback on a particular article, please do so in the comments section on the article's page. For all feedback related to the actual site (not articles), please post your comments at the SUMO newsgroup.

Thanks again everyone for all your help. We still have more articles to write, more articles to edit and more work to be done on the SUMO site, but now is an appropriate time to celebrate all the hard work and accomplishments thus far!

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

L10n of

This is a follow-up to my earlier post about localization of the Firefox support project on

The first step in localization is launching the beta en-US version of SUMO. Once we have a few weeks of good user feedback and data, we can determine which support articles are the most useful and stable (there is even a metric for this!). The most useful/stable articles will be rank ordered for localization.

Why the useful/stable metric? We want to make sure that users in all locales have current and correct articles. Some locale support teams will be robust enough to manage all the necessary changes in existing and new content. Some locales, though, will have smaller teams who will need to do high leverage translation—so we want to make sure the articles they translate aren’t going to change the next day.

The SUMO knowledge base beta should be live in September. We are hoping to begin localization of SUMO no later than October for those locales who want to participate. To help make this process easier, there will be a staging area for localized content before the platform is launched in your locale. If you want to get involved, please contact me at jt at mozilla dot com.

What if I don’t just want to translate? We know that there are some support issues that are unique to particular locales. We also know that different locales have different ways of approaching technical support. Mozilla wants to ensure that all of our volunteers have the correct information so that they can figure out the best way to share that content with users in your locale.

I just got a support phone call for Firefox...

...and it reconfirmed to me why the work we are doing on Firefox support is very important.

All she needed help with was to import her bookmarks from IE, but she had no idea where to do it and then where to look for them (she may have actually imported them as a part of the install-- she didn't think so-- but that is beside the point). The point is that our work on SUMO will positively impact the daily lives of Firefox users. This was a woman who was told to use Firefox because it would make her online banking easier and better. Think of all the people like this who we will be able to help keep or even turn in to passionate users of Firefox.

The phone call also reaffirmed to me that we have a long way to go content wise on SUMO. We have are off to a great start, but there are still so many things that people need help with. That said, I still do think our strategy of getting the initial article list live and then using the learnings from how people actually use the SUMO site (what they search for, etc.) to determine what new content we create is the correct one. Using those learnings will also tell us how we can make all this great content easy to find--even when users don't know exactly what they are looking for (which is equally important).

So, thanks again to everyone for all your hard work. You can still get involved. Visit our SUMO contributor page to learn how.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Seeding Mozilla marketing in India and beyond

Mozilla in India...
Seth B., Manager of Mozilla's community giving program, and Chris Hofmann (chofmann), Director of Special Projects for Mozilla, went on a 2 week community building trip to India as a part of our larger objective of seeding Mozilla marketing around the world. Seth's blog has an incredible account of the trip (many great blog posts). I recommend that you check it out. A quick summary is that Seth and Chofmann both feel that the Mozilla community in India is incredibly vibrant and excited to help spread Firefox.

... and Beyond
As I mentioned earlier, Rishi, one of our interns, has been researching the state of the web and the state of Mozilla in Russia, Australia, Pakistan, Singapore, Turkey, Canada and Mexico. We will be publishing what we have learned within the next week. We look forward to your feedback on the information and possible next steps.

What's up in Brazil and Argentina? Lots!
I have heard from a few of our Brazil volunteers that they have begun organizing action teams around getting local computer makers (small businesses-- almost like mom and pop shops) to put Firefox on all the computers they build. Mozilla Argentina volunteers are testing a similar program at Internet Cafes/LAN Houses. We are all excited to hear how these efforts work and see if they can be replicated elsewhere.

Friday, July 27, 2007

1 week until SUMO knowledge base alpha-- we need your help!

If all goes to plan, the Firefox Support Working group will be pushing the knowledge base live for community review next Friday, August 3rd.

We still have some open articles, as well as plenty of claimed articles that need writing and editing. Check our our community contributor page to learn how you can help. It is going to take a full team effort to get the alpha live by the end of the week, but given the overwhelming response thus far, I think it is doable.

Forum design feedback needed
We are now in the process of designing the look and feel of the SUMO forums. If you have any feedback on what they should look like (remember, we have already chosen TikiWiki as the solution) or any examples of easy to use support forums out there, please contact me at jt at mozilla dot com.

Do you know any good chat solutions?
We also are looking for live chat solutions. If you know of any good easy to use chat solutions, please pass those along too!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

First Enterprise Working Group call a success!

As I mentioned earlier, we now have an Enterprise Working Group that is exploring how we can make Firefox easier to use/deploy for large organizations (companies, schools, governments, universities).

Check out a quick recap of today's discussion. Thanks to everyone who participated.

The next call will focus on improvements/features in Firefox that would be helpful for enterprises. We are still looking for participants in the group, so definitely feel free to join. Once we have details for the next call, I will also post them here.

47 out of 64 Firefox support articles claimed (WOW)!

We are on a roll here folks! Great work by a large number of volunteers.

If you want to get involved, please jump on in today! Get started now and claim your article(s). It is an easy way to have a major impact on millions of Firefox users.

I will be posting more information soon on SUMO next steps.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

28 of 64 Firefox support articles claimed

Saturday has been a busy day for the Firefox support article writers. We now have people signed up to write 28 of the 64 articles needs to launch the SUMO project.

You too can join in the fun! Get started now and claim your article(s). It is an easy way to have a major impact on millions of Firefox users.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Get 'em while they're hot: write a Firefox support article

12 of the 64 Firefox support articles have already been claimed... sign-up for an article today before you miss out!

The number of people who have volunteered for this project has been amazing so far (10 different people-- none of them paid to do it)! Get started now (even if you can't write the article today-- put your name next to the article you want to write).

Can't decide whether or not you should do it?
Tens of millions of Firefox users will benefit from your work. We make it easy to get involved and we are definitely happy to answer your questions.

Don't have the time?
Writing an article shouldn't take too much time. We have done much of the research for you. Most of the articles have sources you can refer to in writing the article. Plus, it is way more fun that doing your laundry.

But JT, I'm a really, really, really bad writer: If you can't write, I'm sure you are good at communicating in other ways. Use those skills to get others to help out.

I don't know how to use the wiki?
Tell me which article you want to write (jt at mozilla dot com) and I will sign you up. Then, write the article, send it to me and I will post it for you.

The SUMO project is a Mozilla wide effort that needs your help. Get started today. Thanks in advance!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Write a Firefox support article today!

After many months of hard work, we are now ready to start writing support documentation for the project!

This is an awesome way to impact the experience of tens of millions of people in a very real way. Let’s be honest, how often do you get to do that? Whether you are an engineer, writer, marketer, salesperson, student or none of the above, you can write support documentation for Firefox. It’s easy to get started!

But I am not a good writer! No problem… we need people who can write out the core content. Once we have that, we can have people who are “writers” and “editors” clean it up and make it sound pretty.

Get started now by following the instructions on our “Get Started Now” page!

We are 1 down and have 63 more to go! (Congrats to Andrew for finishing the first draft!)

I will be posting daily updates on our progress. Please help us spread the word!

Monday, July 16, 2007

Join the Firefox Enterprise Working Group

Firefox has shown incredible growth in the consumer market over the past few years. We have done that through laser focus on developing a product with the user's interests driving our decisions (in addition to a little marketing and lots of happy users spreading the word). With that focus on users, we have not been as focused on serving large organizations. While we do know that some major corporations deploy Firefox, we haven't been able to address their needs with the same veracity that we have for individual users (luckily we are an open source organization!).

To help figure out what can be done to make Firefox the best choice for enterprises (we define this as large companies as well as non-profits, educational institutions, governments and even medium size businesses), some Firefox community members have gathered to form the Firefox Enterprise Working Group.

The group will take a similar approach to the Firefox Support Working Group: understand the current state of the market, identify ways to improve our support of enterprise and build consensus around what action is possible by Mozilla community and MoCo. I am looking forward to working with them.

Check out the info from the two community leaders Michael and Yuriy:
The first Global call focused on the Enterprise Working Group around Firefox is currently scheduled for July 25, 10:00am Pacific, 1:00pm Eastern, 17:00 UTC.
Please see for Objectives, Rules of Engagement, and Dial-in Info.
Each of the calls will be organized around a central theme, with the primary goal being to simply communicate information and document that information, in the hopes that people inside and outside the group can learn from our experiences.

P.S. Figuring out enterprise is particularly important in locales where a majority of users access the internet through the workplace (or at least a large percentage of them). For us to ensure meaningful market share, we don't necessarily need a full outbound enterprise program overnight, but we do need to work well for those who are interested in using Firefox. That is what we are trying to figure.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Firefox market share trending up globally

Thanks to all the hard work of the Mozilla community, Firefox market share is trending up all over the globe. Check out this Xiti Monitor article (in French) that goes in to more detail. Hopefully, with our efforts to help develop and support the marketing communities in each locale, we can help accelerate this growth.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007 and community support sites

Since the Firefox Support community working group announced its PRD to create a knowledge base, forum and live chat at, many people have asked me how this will affect the community support sites around the globe. I will answer that in two parts: 1) Why we think the community driven is important 2) Community support sites are and will still be integral parts of the Mozilla community

For the long time that Mozilla has not addressed user support of Firefox, these community sites have done an incredible job providing user support on behalf of the Mozilla community. However, as the user base has grown beyond tech savvy users, the support needs for Firefox have changed. After an open planning process of a few months, the support working group has determined the best way to meet the needs of the average Firefox user is to create SUMO.

Firefox support, even on, will always be community driven. We couldn’t and, just as important, wouldn’t have it any other way. We also need to increase participation beyond the current contributors to meet the expected demand. To get involved, please contact me at jt at mozilla dot com.

We fully expect that community support sites will continue to meet the needs of their users after the launch of SUMO. The larger the support community there is, the better things are for Mozilla users (Firefox, Thunderbird, SeaMonkey, Camino, etc). I suspect there will be lots we can all learn from each other.

What about L10n?
The SUMO project will first be rolled out for en-US (because we have volunteers to make it happen). Locales who want to participate in the beta of SUMO are definitely welcome. Please contact me at jt at mozilla dot com for more information. Until others are rolled out, we will link to the community support sites in those locales (similar to what we do now).

Monday, July 9, 2007

Firefox Support Project Manager

As a part of our efforts to improve Firefox support, we are looking for a Firefox Support Project Manager. If you are interested or know someone who is interested, please let me know (jt at mozilla dot com).



Firefox Support Project Manager

Responsible for all aspects of the platform
Mobilize volunteers for successful platform roll out and continued support
Spearhead efforts to recruit and train more volunteers
Develop and track metrics to ensure quality user support and healthy support community
Identity, develop and support volunteer community
Develop and implement formal feedback loops
Serve as primary interface for support between marketing, product, QA and engineering
Responsible for overall user care efforts (including responding to letters, voicemails, etc.)

Required Qualifications:
Team player attitude
Self-motivated and quick learner
Excellent verbal and interpersonal skills
Excellent written communication skills
Strong multitasking and troubleshooting skills
Good organization and time management skills
Customer management skills
Familiarity with personal computers, desktop applications, web browsers, and Windows operating systems
Strong familiarity with Mozilla and Firefox required, experience working with open source or community driver organization strongly preferred

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Firefox support platform vendor selection call today

Tuesday, July 3rd at 2pm pacific time-- we will decide between the mediawiki/drupal, tikiwiki and jive software systems for the support knowledge base and forum platform.

Call in details:
* California: 650-903-0800 then extension 91
* Toronto: 416-848-3114 then extension 91
* Toll-free: 800-707-2533 (866-879-4799 as a backup) then password 369
* Conference bridge: 280

General overview of process
Walk through of matrix for each solution
Decision time!

The latest of the requirements matrix:

Thursday, June 28, 2007

What a trip! Mozilla's last few days in Brazil cap off an amazing week

This is my last posting from Brazil. It has been an incredibly successful and worthwhile trip! We have traveled to 4 different cities in 8 days, collaborated with enthusiastic and talented students at 6 of the top universities, met with representatives from the largest portals and sites in Brazil (, and, spoke to more than 1000 people about the importance of Firefox in keeping the web free and open, been interviewed by 3 of the top news outlets in Brazil, treated many of our pt-br Firefox localization team to a pizza dinner and learned invaluable information about a very important country for Mozilla’s future.

We have met so many wonderful and dedicated (or soon to be dedicated) Mozilla community members. They are the reason why there are more than 3.5 million Brazilians using Firefox today and will be the reason that number continues to increase. At one of our community gatherings, one of our volunteers commented on how much he appreciated our live updates on this blog. He said that he really felt that we (Mozilla) are really trying to understand Brazil and to make the web better for the 30 million and growing Brazilians who use the web. Ultimately though, no one will know Brazil better than our Brazilian community leaders—we look forward to helping in your efforts to spread Firefox.

One of the most important things we learned during the past 8 days is that almost 70% of Brazilians access the internet using IE 6. And, many, if not most of them are using an unlicensed version of Windows (no one knew the exact number, but the general consensus is that the number is very high). With no Window’s license, these users don’t get updates to Windows or to IE 6. That means that the majority of Brazilian internet users are very venerable to the many nasty attacks out there on the web. The good news is that Firefox can help. Because Firefox has an awesome automatic updater that runs outside of the Window’s update system, Firefox users easily and quickly get the most up to date version of Firefox to keep them safe on the web. This problem was reiterated to us everywhere we went in Brazil-- many of our community members have volunteered to help explore ways to get this message out. If you have any suggestions, we would love to hear them.

A few highlights of the last 2 days:
We spoke to the engineering, marketing and product teams at, Brazil’s largest portal and incredibly gracious hosts. We also met with some of the founders of, which is very similar to and is a leader in Brazil and a fast grower around Latin America. We also made presentations to students at Unicamp (University of Campinas) and the University of Sao Paulo, where we were asked everything from “how did you come up with the name Firefox” to “how to I get involved in other ways besides coding.”

The highlights of the past 2 days were definitely our Mozilla community gathering and our dinner with localization team. At the community gathering, we spent more than three hours brainstorming ways of spreading Firefox, trying to get their perspective of the state of the web in Brazil and then did a general question and answer session. The future of Mozilla Brazil was definitely sitting in that room! We also were fortunate enough (even though it was a 21 hour day) to be able to have dinner with many of our localizers for Firefox. I think the picture of the group shows how much fun it can be to be a key contributor to Firefox.

My favorite two non-Mozilla pictures and a general thought:
These are both from the small airport we flew in to on our way to Sao Carlos. One is a sign that shows the systems of the Dengue Virus (very nasty as you can see). This sign was right next to the security area and was unlike anything I had seen before. The other photo is the “luggage belt” where you pick up your luggage after your arrival. One side of the glass is where the airline employees unload the baggage and right on the other side of the glass is where we stand to pick it up (just a few feet away). All the locals liked to make jokes about it, so I thought I would pass it along to you.

Finally—I just wanted to mention that the people here were incredibly hospitable, engaging, friendly and very helpful during our trip. To everyone who helped make that possible, especially long time Mozilla contributor Marcio Galli, I (and Asa) say thanks!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

More love from Brazilian press, Brazil's largest portal, has a great article about Firefox 3. This interview also appeared on Brazilian TV.

Here is the article in English.

Also, check out the picture of Aas being interviewed:

Asa featured on cover of tech section of Brazil Journal on Firefox 3

In other exciting news, Asa was featured on the cover of the tech section of the Brazil Journal talking about Firefox 3 and our trip to Brazil.

We will work on getting it translated, but we have been told that the article was very flattering (of Mozilla and Firefox).

Mozilla in Sao Carlos (in photos)

Another incredibly successful day in Brazil-- this time we were joined by longtime Mozilla developer and evangelist Marcio Galli. We spoke to packed crowds at the Federal University of Sao Carlos and the University of Sao Paulo in San Carlos, both some of the most competitive and elite schools in Brazil. We met many Firefox fans-- some of whom threw a Firefox 2 launch party by creating what was supposedly the world's largest hamburger (and then they ate it!). There was lots of great brainstorming around how to get organized in Brazil and what the first tasks/stunts/events should be.

We spend the next two days in Sao Paulo with completely packed schedules, so updates are likely to be a little less frequent. Over the course of the trip, we should speak to more than 1000 Mozilla enthusiasts explaining how to get involved spreading Firefox.

Check out all the photo's at:

Sunday, June 24, 2007

More on the state of the web in Brazil

I have had a chance to type up a few more notes—here are a few more things we have learned about the Brazilian market (all based on conversations we have had with people from universities, foundations and top internet companies):

The operating system market share on one of Brazil’s top websites is:
Windows 98- 45%
Windows XP- 40%
Vista- 6%
Linux- 4%
Mac- too expensive!

When people buy personal computers in Brazil, they buy it without an operating system and then go get pirated copies of Windows (generally older versions). Actually purchasing an upgrade to Windows is very expensive for people and all the people with pirated software don't get updated from Microsoft, so there are many security issues for users here (all the more reason to use Firefox!).

Top Dail-up ISP’s
Terra—which is backed by Telefonica (biggest telephone company in Brazil)
UOL--essentially Brazil’s AOL

Largest ADSL’s are run by telco’s
Brasil Telecom—“Turbo”
(all actually pretty equal in #’s, but largest of high speed internet connections come from ADSL)
Main cable broadband company-- Netvirtua

A quick reference for the state of internet connectivity in Brazil is the US a few years back (telco’s and major media companies desperately trying to get in on this whole “internet thing” with most people still on dial up).

Globo is the largest media company in Brazil. They own TV Globo, the largest TV station, radio stations, the biggest magazines, the biggest papers and the internet properties (5th largest portal online). They also have a stake in netvitua (largest cable broad band company) and own tons and tons of content.

Brazilian computer company Positivo claims largest share of home pc market in Brazil, with Dell and HP leading strongly in business market.

If you have anything to add (or think something is wrong), please let me know. I am trying to give real-time info, but after the trip I will be summarizing the notes for our community/partners in Brazil to edit for accuracy and thoroughness.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Mozilla's Friday (and Saturday) in Rio

Friday recap:
We met with professors and graduate students at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, one of the top universities in Brazil, to learn more about the state of the internet here. While most of the professors were in computer science, we also had and a business and economics professor who studies the business case for open source. According to the professors, the computer science program at FURJ had the first website in Latin America, so this is diehard group.

We then spoke to a group of about 100 students who hung around for almost 3 hours for questions and answers, with many who stayed longer for pictures with us (and by us, I mean Asa). The focus of our presentation was about the past, present and future of Mozilla and how they could be a part of it, with a focus on spreading Firefox. All of the CS students have to complete a “senior project” of sorts and one of the top professors in the school volunteered to “supervise” any student project that deals with Firefox. They also were kind enough to run us quickly by the “world’s deepest pool,” which is used to measure the impact of waves and win on oil rigs, boats and supposedly Oral-B toothbrush commercials.

That evening, we hosted a gathering of students, bloggers, professors and computer professionals to begin brainstorming on how we can spread Firefox in Brazil. Lots of different ideas came up, but people kept coming back to an Orkut extension contest (will do more on the session when we get back). Another interesting question many people brought up was whether the fact that most people at home access the internet in Brazil through dial-up causes people to be less likely to download Firefox because it would be too slow. We didn’t have the answer, but it would be interesting to look if we see a strong correlation with broadband connectivity and Firefox adoption in other regions.

On Saturday, we met with and Asa was interviewed by the Brazil Journal, which is Rio’s oldest newspaper. The cameraman and reporter were huge Firefox fans. The article comes out on Monday online and in print.

Asa took some great photo’s of our meetings on Friday—check them out!

Overall, here is a quick overview of some of the things we have learned:
- There is a strong, passionate group of open source advocates who are excited to work on behalf of Mozilla
- Some 10 million people (roughly 35% of all of Brazil’s internet population) uses Orkut (the social networking site) in a month
- While Google is the most popular search engine (it is suggested that one of the main reasons is their simple home page loaded fastest on everyone’s slow dial-up—off course in addition to having great search), the MSN properties are quite popular (in fact, just slightly smaller than Google). Popular services include MSN Live Messenger, Hotmail and
- The top portal and one of the top ISP's is UOL, (many compare them to our AOL). We meet with them in a few days, so will have more to say on them then.
- Website compatibility is an issue (years ago, we had did a lot of work to get the top banks and e-commerce sites to work with Firefox, but this is a reoccurring theme among people we talk to). Many, if not most, of the older web developers/IT managers for Brazilian did not have formal training and are self-taught—so standards aren’t necessarily something they are familiar with (I am pretty sure this isn't unique to Brazil, but this was something many thought was important to note).
- Soccer is beyond huge (this is something I “knew” coming in, but I had no idea how big it is here)…everyone wants a browser skin of their team (personas anyone?)

Once we get back, we will do a more thorough presentation and blog post detailing the trip, the takeaways and the follow-up needed. Of course, we would love to hear your thoughts, ideas and questions.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Mozilla in Brazil Day 1: Center for Technology and Society

Today we met with the management team from the Center for Technology and Society at the FGV School of Law in Rio de Janeiro to learn more about the state of the internet open source software world in Brazil... and learn we did!

Here a just a few things this group of young, talented and smart lawyers are up to:
The Director of the Center for Technology and Society, Renaldo Lemos, is also the Chair of Creative Commons Brazil, which was the 3rd CC chapter outside the US. They somehow managed to get 2,500 people to attend the launch event for Creative Commons in Brazil (beating the other launches by many zeros). In addition, Ronald is also the chair of
A few of their projects:
Open Business Project
Free and Open Source Software Legal Support
Access to Knowledge (a2k)
In addition to their normal research and teaching, they also have been contracted by the Brazilian government to draft the new SPAM laws. Very impressive group (and great hosts too)!

At Mozilla, we often struggle to relate our core goal (promoting a innovation and choice on the web) to something meaningful for daily users. This challenge isn’t unique to Mozilla. One of the main goals of CTS is to ensure that their research and work, which if focused on development, innovation and democracy, is accessible to the average person. In addition to their many blogs aimed at general consumers, they also developed a real world approach to explaining the impact of copyright owners pushing for “permanent” copyright to materials by having 20 different musicians record different tracks from a high profile Brazilian classical musician whose family is fighting to extend the copyright on his work indefinitely. If the copyright expires on January 1, for example, the 20 new tracks will be released on the 2nd and then on the 3rd, the CTS team will promote a contest to see who can do the best remix of the tracks, which could never have been done before in mass because of the copyright. Rather that just issuing a press release bemoaning the problem, their work to make copyright expiration palatable to a broader audience is down right impressive (forgive my butchering of the example).

We also learned quite a bit about the state of the internet in Brazil. The most interesting tidbit was that approximately 28% of the internet activity comes through “LAN houses,” which are nothing more than internet cafés for the lower and working class in some of Brazil’s worst neighborhoods or rural areas. These pay as you surf computer stations having sprung up all around Brazil as entrepreneurs saw the money that could be made by setting up places for the local kids to play online games and use Orkut (which is another story in and of itself). There will be plenty more posted on what we learned about the state of the internet in Brazil, but considering our red eye flight last night and full day of meetings, I am going to throw in the towel. Tomorrow we have a full day at the Federa University of Rio de Janeiro and a Mozilla community gathering at Devassa Flamengo in the evening.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

New Rio de Janeiro Event Location

An update to our Mozilla Brazil community building event schedule:

The Rio de Janeiro Mozilla Community Gathering on Friday, June 22 from 5pm to 8pm
will now be held at Devassa Flmengo. The address is: Rua Senador Vergueiro, 2 and phone is: (21) 2223-1658.

Please help us spread the word! For more information, please contact me at jt at mozilla dot com.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Mozilla Brazil Trip Schedule

As I mentioned earlier, Asa and I will be heading to Brazil to help build and support marketing community. Below is the itinerary for our trip…

Thursday June 21, 2007
• Meeting Mr. Ronaldo Lemos, the Director of the Center for Technology and Society at the Fundação Getulio Vargas School of Law in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and of Creative Commons Brazil.

Friday June 22, 2007
• Meeting with Professor Geraldo Xexeo from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ)
• 2:00 p.m. – Mozilla Presentation at UFRJ
• 5:00 p.m. – Mozilla Community Gathering at Bennett Institute in Rio de Janeiro-- Open to all!

Travel to São Carlos

Monday June 25, 2007
• Dinner with Mozilla Community in São Carlos

Tuesday June 26, 2007
• 1:30 p.m. - Mozilla Community Development Day at the Institute of Mathematical Sciences and Computation at the University of São Paulo, Brazil
o 2:00 p.m. – Mozilla presentation
o 3:00 p.m. – Open forum
o 5:00 p.m. – Mixer

Wednesday June 27, 2007
• Meeting, presentation, and lunch with the UOL (
5:00 p.m. – Mozilla Community gathering at the Golden Tulip Paulista Plaza Open to all!

Thursday June 28, 2007
• Morning meeting with BuscaPé
• Evening meeting with Unicamp.

If you have any questions or want to join us while we are there, please contact jt at mozilla dot com.

Welcome Rishi!

Rishi Mallik, a senior at Stanford studying Management Science and Engineering, has just joined the Mozilla marketing team as a summer intern. He will be with us until September focusing on furthering our international marketing efforts. In particular, he will be working to better understand the state of Firefox and the Mozilla marketing communities in Mexico, Chile, Australia, Russia, Pakistan, Singapore, Canada and Turkey. If you have thoughts, ideas or questions, please contact him at rmallik at mozilla dot com.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Overcoming muscle memory—how do we increase Firefox retention?

To date, Mozilla has done a reasonably good job getting people to download Firefox, but our data shows that a very high percentage of those people do not become long term, active Firefox users. We need to figure out how we overcome the default behavior of “clicking on the blue e.”

This obviously is not just a marketing challenge, but one that the whole company (and broader community) must face head on. To this end, we asked for an early round of ideas on how to improve Firefox retention. Below is an edited version of that feedback. What do you think? What are we missing?

Firefox Retention
Some high level questions:
How do we make Firefox people’s default browser (in choice and in practice)?
How do we make people “own” their browser and make it more personalized?
How do we change the habit of “clicking the blue e”?

Understanding our users
Segmenting users to understand why and how they use the internet/Firefox
Understand our user touch points along the user life cycle

Improved and more sticky start page
Better auto-updating process
Icon/name on desktop
-“get on the internet”
-Fx in start menu
Focus on security
Make plug-in finder much easier (Windows media player, flash, etc)
Window that pops up if you haven’t used Fx in a while
Partners as a retention tool (ebay, kodak, joga, google)

add ons contest (for people who download—not develop)

Security (in product and general messaging)
Brand campaign around thanking users of Firefox (and a tell a friend link)
Message benefits of open source and mission of Mozilla

Firefox support
-support as a way to turn people in to evangelists—after all support requests, say “you were just helped by a Mozilla volunteer, get involved today”
- feedback loop helps tell engineering, qa and product what doesn’t work before people tell us in the exit survey
User Education “tools, tricks, tips”

Mozilla store as retention tool
User groups and community events (college reps, etc)
User Parties (more than just 1 for Fx launches)
Community as a part of retention
- get people to sfx
Email newsletter with combo of cool blog posts, tips and tricks

To make comments or suggestions and to ask questions, please visit the forum topic.

Firefox Support Next Steps

The Firefox Support working group has made a great deal of progress in our effort to improve support for Firefox users. After getting feedback on our support plan overview and product requirements document, we are now ready to put the plan in action. In this post, I will give a brief overview of our implementation timeline, with a focus on our two most important next steps: staffing and the support platform.

In order for this plan to happen, Mozilla needs an employee (at a minimum) who is dedicated full time to our community based Firefox support. We currently have an open job for someone to coordinate the day to day operations of Firefox support. Please pass this along to someone you know (or apply yourself!).

Support Coordinator (apply at
Brief job description:
The Support Coordinator will be responsible for the definition and implementation of highly leveraged global support strategies and programs to improve Firefox’s user support.

Develop support platform timeline with working group and drive implementation of Firefox support platform on
• Work with UI, marketing creative and user education teams to take ownership of roll out of certain aspects of the support platform
• Oversee content migration, population and editing
• Establish best practices for knowledge base, forums and live chat
Mobilize volunteers for successful platform roll out and continued support
Spearhead efforts to recruit and train more volunteers
Develop and track metrics to ensure quality user support and healthy support community
Identity, develop and support volunteer community
Upgrade support platform as necessary
Develop and implement formal feedback loops
Serve as primary interface for support between marketing, product, QA and engineering
Responsible for overall user care efforts (including responding to letters, voicemails, etc.)

Choosing a platform
We have decided to build a prototype of the support platform using MediaWiki to power the knowledge base and Drupal to power the forum and other interfaces. These open source solutions, with their current plug-ins, should give us many of the features that we require, along with the flexibility to customize to the needs of our project. MediaWiki powers most of the other Mozilla wiki's as well as large scale sites. Mozilla currently uses Drupal for

Building a beta knowledgebase
The first phase of our prototyping will be a knowledge base beta with a main search interface. The development of the knowledge base will have two components that will run concurrently: content as well as design and development. If you would like to participate in this development process, please contact me at jt at mozilla dot com (really looking for someone with MediaWiki experience).

Firefox Support Timeline v1

Knowledge base style guide and inventory complete
Knowledge base design
Content migration, development and editing
Support coordinator on board
Beta version of knowledge base and support interface live

As always, your feedback and participation is important. I look forward to hearing from you.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

First steps to seed global Mozilla marketing communities

In last week's post, I wrote about our general plans to seed Mozilla marketing communities around the globe. This week I will go in to a few more details: marketing platform goals, marketing locale goals and the timeline/priorities for the locales.

Marketing platform goals: this central platform for Mozilla marketing community should launch this summer and will incorporate the goals below (except support and
PR- put Mozilla and Firefox messaging, faq’s and press releases online for localization
Events- engage locales in Mozilla events program
Metrics and Analytics- develop dashboard of key metrics that is accessible by community
College reps- Support college outreach efforts globally develop scalable CMS solution that allows for localized version of and using best practices and analytics
Firefox Support- initially provide knowledge base content for locales to use in support efforts. Eventually, provide platform (knowledge base, forum and chat) that can be localized based on needs of communities.

Marketing locale goals:
These goals should be viewed as a checklist. For some locales, many of the goals are already accomplished (localized version of Firefox); while in some locales, goals may not work with our high level goal to move quickly. That said, this should give you a good idea of what we think is important in building marketing communities.

Priority 1
Localized version of Firefox
PR- establish local PR agency/contact
Establish baseline metrics and methods for measurement
Identify and develop where needed local marketing leaders and marketing community

Priority 2
Live version or equivalent for locale
Develop relationships with traditional partners (colleges, open source groups, etc.)
Community driven marketing campaign (“New York Times/Crop Circle” style)
Outreach to top websites in locale to ensure compatibility with Firefox

Priority 3
Localize best practice version of and
Establish and train local volunteer spokespeople
Localize top add-ons
Live local support
Low-touch partnership with top search/sites
Leverage partners for marketing efforts

Rough timeline for marketing community development efforts:
We can’t do all this at once! Below you can see a rough timeline of when we will begin to focus on the priority one goals for each locale. Priority two and three goals will follow over time (with obvious deference to locales with potential for highest impact). It is important to note that while we will be focusing our efforts on certain countries, once the marketing platforms are live (many are live now), all locales should have access to Mozilla marketing support.

In my next post, I will describe our plan to make a more focused effort to spread Firefox. To get a quick idea at where we will focus, check out the timeline above and the list of internet users by country .

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Mozilla Brazil-- Community building events (Join us)

As Asa mentioned, we will be in Brazil for community building from June 21-28. More detailed info on the trip will be posted soon.

Here's a quick schedule of trip:
Rio de Janeiro: June 21-24
Sao Carlos: June 26
Sao Paulo City: June 27-28

We do want to highlight that we will be hosting Mozilla community gatherings in Rio and Sao Paulo. The goal of these gatherings is to help identify and develop the Firefox evangelism community in Brazil. They will be part social and part informative, so please help us spread the word to current and potential volunteers. More info on the exact time and location of the event are on the way.

Rio de Janeiro- Friday, June 22 evening
Sao Paulo City- Thursday, June 28 evening

If you want to help out or have any questions, please contact me at jt at mozilla dot com

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Seeding Mozilla around the world

When prioritizing Mozilla’s efforts to increase Firefox adoption, our ability to scale is very important. We have a small team for a product that about 100 million people use worldwide. Firefox’s amazing growth to more than 15% market share has been a result of the hard work of the entire Mozilla community, but we still recognize that continued growth is vital for our goals of a free and open web.

As John mentioned in his blog post earlier this week, the majority of Firefox users are now not in the US and that the fastest growing segment of Firefox users is the “long tail” of the languages (marked “other” in the chart.) My post today (with more to come over the next few weeks) is on how we help the non-US localizations grow faster.

Mozilla currently has a presence (and by that, I generally mean a Mozilla office) in the United States, France, Japan and China. We also have PR agencies in the UK, Germany and Poland. But Mozilla employees are not the only—or even the main—drivers of Firefox marketing. We are fortunate to have very strong marketing communities, particularly in Europe. For example, our community in Italy has driven almost 16% market share by attending conferences, localizing Firefox and providing user support—all things they have done since the early days.

Currently, communities close to Mozilla offices are better able to take advantage of Firefox marketing efforts than those who are not. That must change. We also haven’t been able to support our most vibrant communities to the extent we would like—and they deserve. That too must change.

This doesn’t mean Mozilla will be able to “run marketing programs” in new countries, but that Mozilla will develop scalable marketing platforms as well as identify, support and help build marketing leaders who can in turn leverage these platforms to evangelize Firefox.

We have lots of great resources at Mozilla: pr, events program, brand efforts (community t-shirts, Mozilla store, etc.), user education and Firefox support,, college reps program, in addition to many others (and some that need to be developed). We need to make those programs and platforms available to communities worldwide and do it fast.

Looking at the chart below of the top 20 countries by Internet population and Firefox’s market share, you can see the many growth opportunities.

( and

High Level Goals:
-Don’t mess things up!
As I mentioned before, we know there are already awesome communities evangelizing Firefox all around the globe. How do we help you do your job better and more easily? We also know there are communities with limited to no marketing community. How do we help build marketing community there? Mozilla can’t and shouldn’t “run” a global marketing program, but Mozilla can and should support and seed global marketing communities.
-Identify and support existing communities and develop where they don’t exist
See “Don’t mess things up!”
-Build platform for localized community marketing based on best practices
With shared resources, we can learn from each other. If Poland tries a new program that is very successful, other communities should be able to know about it and decide if it will work for them.
-Develop and publish global metrics and analytics
Everyone likes to know whether stuff works or not, we aren’t any different. When things do work, we want to be able to fund more of them.
-Promote healthy competition between marketing communities around relevant and fair metric
A little fun rivalry never hurt anyone!
-Establish tools for effective communication with community members
Communication is key for collaborative and efficient worldwide evangelism community

My next post is on what we think are the first steps are to better empower our communities to spread Firefox and the timeline of this project.

Future discussions:
1. First steps and timeline to seed communities for global marketing efforts
2. More focus, more impact: prioritize efforts in locales with biggest possible impact
3. Brazil: what we know, what we don't and what our early plans are
4. India: what we know, what we don't and what our early plans are

Your feedback is an important part of this process. I look forward to a very open discussion about how we can accelerate the growth of Firefox adoption worldwide by seeding marketing communities.

Want to get involved? Email me at jt at mozilla dot com

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Firefox Help Needs Your Help

To date, Mozilla community volunteers have provided Firefox user support that has met, and often exceeded, the needs of the tech and the early adopter users of Firefox. As Firefox’s market share grows beyond early adopters, our user support needs also to evolve. The Firefox Support Working Group has spent the last month doing research and community outreach on how Mozilla should evolve user support through a community based approach.

We've had dozens of community volunteers participate through open phone calls, in person meetings, forum posts, blog posts and emails. As a result of this process, we have developed a draft overview and product requirements document for Firefox Support.

In order for this to be successful, we need your feedback and your help. Please check out the overview and give us your thoughts. If you want to be more involved, you can join the support planning mailing list. To see others' comments, check out the Google Group.

Thanks for your help. We look forward to hearing from you.