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