Don’t look for morality tales in Mozilla CEO resignation saga
If you were looking for a “teachable moment” about a Silicon Valley executive’s personal beliefs versus his ability to lead a diverse community, this wasn’t it.
by Charles Cooper
Brendan Eich’s short stint as chief executive officer of the Mozilla Foundation came to an abrupt end this week. All things considered, his ultimate undoing might have been more a matter of his personal style than his personal opinion.
Eich’s resignation on Thursday ended a storm of controversy that whipped up after public records revealed he made a $1,000 donation in 2008 to an organization that promoted a ban on gay marriage in California.
Many, including Mozilla employees and independent Firefox developers, viewed Eich’s support for California’s Proposition 8 as condoning a mean-spirited campaign to prevent gay couples from enjoying the same rights held by other US citizens. (Until it was overturned last year, Prop. 8 had rescinded the right for gay couples to marry.) Dating site OKCupid even publicly urged Firefox-using members to switch Web browsers and called out Eich on its Web site as “an opponent of equal rights for gay couples.”
Why Mozilla’s Chief Had to Resign
By FARHAD MANJOO APRIL 4, 2014, 1:59 PM 155 Comments
Manu Fernandez/Associated Press
What conclusions should we draw about Silicon Valley from what happened at Mozilla?
Two weeks ago, Brendan Eich was appointed as chief executive of the open-source software company that makes the Firefox Web browser, among other products. Then it became public that, in 2008, Mr. Eich donated $1,000 to support Proposition 8, a California measure to ban same-sex marriage. On Thursday, amid a growing firestorm, Mozilla announced that Mr. Eich had resigned from the company.
Is this an instance of political correctness run amok? Is it a sign that Silicon Valley has become militantly tolerant, unwilling to let executives express their personal viewpoints on issues unrelated to their jobs? I’ve seen many such worries expressed online; even supporters of same-sex marriage have been characterizing Mr. Eich’s ouster as an awful precedent for giving in to moralistic mob rule.
Eich Is Out. So Is Tolerance.
Ryan T. Anderson April 3, 2014
Mozilla Corp. co-founder Brendan Eich has resigned as CEO after a week of public pressure stemming from a campaign contribution he made six years ago. Eich supported the wrong cause; he supported California’s Proposition 8, the ballot initiative that defined marriage as the union of a man and a woman.
For some who favor the redefinition of marriage, tolerance appears to have been a useful rhetorical device along the way to eliminating dissent.
Eich, on the other hand, seems to have been quite tolerant. As Mozilla Executive Chairwoman Mitchell Baker, commenting on the development, said of Eich’s 15 years at Mozilla:
I never saw any kind of behavior or attitude from him that was not in line with Mozilla’s values of inclusiveness.”
Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich forced to resign for supporting traditional marriage laws
BY JOEL GEHRKE | APRIL 3, 2014
Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich resigned under pressure after gay rights activists demanded that he step down or recant his support of traditional marriage laws.
Eich donated $1,000 to support Proposition 8, the California ballot initiative that amended the state’s constitution to define marriage as between one man and one woman.
“I don’t want to talk about my personal beliefs because I kept them out of Mozilla all these 15 years we’ve been going,” Eich told The Guardian. “I don’t believe they’re relevant.”
Conservatives are lashing out after Mozilla CEO Bernard Eich stepped down this week under pressure because of his past support for California’s Proposition 8. But that backlash is based on a poor understanding of what Mozilla is, and why Eich’s…
The chief of Firefox browser maker Mozilla is stepping down in the face of controversy stirred by his support of a California bill to ban gay marriage. Brendan Eich voluntarily surrendered his role as chief executive of Mozilla, a corporation owned…
Conservative activist Ben Shapiro has engaged in an online protest against the Mozilla Firefox browser in response to the departure of co-founder Brendan Eich. Visitors using the Firefox browser were unable as of Thursday night to visit Shapiro’s…
DATING WEBSITE OK Cupid is no longer trying to tempt its loveseeking users away from the Mozilla Firefox web browser and its CEO’s politics. The firm had posted a note that greeted Firefox users. In it, it took issue with new CEO Brendan Eich’s politics…
The co-founder of the Mozilla Corporation, the company behind the Firefox Internet browser, resigned on Wednesday amid both internal and external calls for his departure because of his support for California’s anti-LGBT Proposition 8. Re/code reported…