The night before Mobile World Congress 2013 kicked off, Mozilla invited 17 of its partners onto the stage with them to announce more details about Firefox OS, Mozilla’s open mobile operating system. The crowded podium certainly represented a global vote of support in making their new web platform a success. And these are just a handful of many great collaborations that underpin the open source, open web philosophy that has driven Mozilla for the past 15 years.
Mozilla and Firefox are open in the truest sense of the word. They have a vast global community with thousands of volunteer contributors whose opinions and perspectives are truly a part of their important business decisions and success. While the leadership team is tuned into feedback from their larger community, this is by no means a case of “management by committee.” Their mission to promote openness, innovation and opportunity on the Web is their ultimate decision-making filter. We’ve never seen an organization that makes collaboration work in the way that Mozilla does – and this sense of shared purpose and impact drives absolutely everything they do. This sense of openness also determined how we built the Firefox OS brand with them. Their community of contributors was invited to share input throughout the strategic and creative development, and the Mozilla leadership team relied on their feedback to ensure global appeal of the messaging and design. The Firefox OS identity that exploded onto the scene at Mobile World Congress is the external, consumer-focused manifestation of the brand strategy – declaring the mobile operating system’s dedication to being a catalyst for individual and collective progress.
Equally important is the contributor identity, developed internally by the Mozilla team, created with the makers in mind, and shared freely and openly with everyone that helps make Firefox OS more relevant, more local and more useful to people all over the world. The “blueprint” nature of this identity reflects the ability for developers to create content on the Firefox OS platform – in their native language, without creative limitations or corporate gatekeepers.
Mozilla and Firefox are uniquely poised to take the open source experience beyond a technology application and into every day life. From Burma to Berlin, their communities of ‘Mozillians’ (that’s what Mozilla’s contributors call themselves) are learning new skills and solving new problems, many of which get redeposited back into the open source “bank” of solutions for others to benefit from. And by enabling millions of people in emerging markets to own their first smartphone, Firefox OS will be opening up possibilities for more people in more places to experience the full power of the Web.