New Mozilla CEO wishes Firefox browser's profits were invisible

Owen Thomas · 01/08/08 03:43PM

John Lilly, the new CEO of Mozilla Corporation, doesn't want you to pay attention to his new charge. The for-profit arm of the nonprofit Mozilla Foundation produces the Firefox browser and makes money largely by partnering with search engines — that's why the Firefox browser comes with a Google or Yahoo search box built in. "The most successful case for [Mozilla Corporation] will be when the corporation itself is sort of invisible," Lilly writes. Now, why would Lilly want you not to pay attention to his very profitable business — $66.8 million in revenues for the foundation, $56 million of which came from the corporation, in 2006, the most recent year for which it reported results? Perhaps it's because there are questions he'd rather you not ask.

AOL discontinues a browser no one uses

Owen Thomas · 12/31/07 12:00PM

The surprise in AOL discontinuing the Netscape browser isn't that the Netscape browser is gone. It's that it was still alive, and that anyone was still working on it. From the moment AOL bought Netscape in 1998 this was a foregone conclusion. AOL was interested in Netscape's Web traffic, not its browser; it continued using Microsoft's internet Explorer in its online service even after the acquisition. That it took AOL nine years to finally kill off the Netscape browser speaks to the Internet giant's fatal sluggishness. Not to mention its unresponsiveness to customers. Netscape has long been nothing but a memory. With its antiquated and buggy browser gone, it can now be a fond one.