Mozilla is shutting down its Ideas platform and creating Mozilla Connect instead

Martin Brinkmann
Feb 24, 2022
Firefox
|
21

Remember [email protected]? The service was launched by Mozilla in mid-2021 to improve communication between the organization and the Firefox community. Firefox users could publish ideas on how to improve the Firefox web browser on the platform and everyone who is using the platform may comment on those ideas and may vote on them.

mozilla ideas

Ideas used the Crowdicity platform and users needed to create an account on the platform for interaction purposes.

Mozilla is sending out emails to users of its platform currently in which it informs them that it is shutting down Ideas; this is not the end of it all though, as Mozilla is working on creating Mozilla Connect, which will serve similar purposes. Mozilla Connect will be a community site that allows users and Mozilla employees to share ideas, provided feedback and interact with each other.

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The email highlights several of the advantages of Mozilla Connect over Ideas:

  • Firefox account is supported.
  • Improved labeling system that helps everyone find posts quickly.
  • "Clearly defined areas" for ideas, feedback and discussions.
  • More participation by Mozilla employees.

Ideas content will be reviewed by Mozilla before the content is archived and personal data is deleted. The email does not make it clear whether Ideas content is migrated to the new platform or if Mozilla Connect is started from scratch. Mozilla did not include a date for the shutdown or the launch of Mozilla Connect in the email, but it promised that existing users will be informed about the launch first.

Closing Words

Ideas sounded like a great idea when it was launched. Firefox users had finally an option to suggest new features or changes to Mozilla, and the organization would get feedback directly from the pulse of its userbase. Unfortunately, Ideas suffered from a lack of participation from Mozilla employees and also from users. In July 2021, I wrote about this here on the site mentioning that no new ideas were published for a period of three weeks as they were all held in moderation.

Starting from scratch with Mozilla Connect may improve the interaction and the platform as a whole, but it sounds as if no user data migration is going to happen. All existing ideas will be lost in that case, and while Mozilla mentioned that it will look at them all, it is going to take a lot of convincing to get users to start from scratch on the new platform. The promise, that Mozilla employees will interact on the platform, is the same one that Mozilla made when it launched the Ideas platform. Only time will tell if interaction will improve on the new platform.

Now You: have you used Ideas?

Summary
Mozilla is shutting down its Ideas platform and creating Mozilla Connect instead
Article Name
Mozilla is shutting down its Ideas platform and creating Mozilla Connect instead
Description
Mozilla will shut down its user community Ideas, a place to post new ideas for Mozilla products such as Firefox, in favor of a new platform, called Mozilla Connect.
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Ghacks Technology News
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Comments

  1. Mystique said on February 24, 2022 at 8:29 am
    Reply

    Of course not, the users of Firefox feel disenfranchised and the minority that they do hold remain silent because they either know Mozilla doesn’t care or they are just exactly the audience Mozilla currently targets which don’t really appear to care about anything… your casual users if you will.
    You can’t build a community based on that. They put far more effort into crushing the community and dismantling the foundations of a once great browser and community so it was expected that this would be a flop.

    What we have is a browser that has such a limited and api to deliver what it once did or close to. There are several addons/extensions that can no longer be created for the browser or serve the same purpose as they once did and it appears that Mozilla has done little to nothing to remedy the issues or bridge those gaps.

    I doubt Mozilla will be able to rein in any support any time soon after all this time. The browser market has become so splintered with forks and choices that there is no clear winner just compromises, compromises, compromises!

    I don’t actually know why developers weren’t active on the website, perhaps they were too busy chasing their flaming tails or maybe they were encouraged to interact but forbidden from agreeing or speaking their mind. Companies that are going downhill are often like that and expect you to be a complete puppet as they aimlessly try to grasp onto whatever they can to stay relevant.

    Turn this ship around Mozilla, you’re killing your team and your userbase!

  2. beemeup5 said on February 24, 2022 at 11:09 am
    Reply

    Excellent! Now we have a NEW place to prominently display all the ideas Mozilla won’t listen to!

    That other platform was SO last year!

  3. allen said on February 24, 2022 at 11:14 am
    Reply

    More accurately, Mozilla should call this or similar from them: LipService.

  4. addendum b said on February 24, 2022 at 11:53 am
    Reply

    A token gesture at best. Mozilla is increasingly tone-deaf but that’s unsurprising given how hard it is to hear anything over the sound of $400,000,000 from Daddy Google.

    But none of that really matters anymore. All Mozilla has to do going forward is keep existing so that LibreWolf can give users what they really want in a non-Chromium-based alternative.

    At least Martin listens to his readers and reverted the terrible recent site changes.

    1. ULBoom said on February 24, 2022 at 3:22 pm
      Reply

      Oh yeah, it works again! No more comments attached to random articles; no more semi-endless herky jerky scrolling.

      Something good for a change.

  5. ElusiveBurningTail said on February 24, 2022 at 12:50 pm
    Reply

    It’s like redesigning a browser interface: “redesign, wait a year, make a new one”.

  6. Anonymous said on February 24, 2022 at 1:18 pm
    Reply

    Just waiting for the inevitable Mozilla stops using their engine and adopts Chromium. Bam. Google takeover of the internet complete that would make Microsoft of the IE6 era blush.

    1. CJV said on February 24, 2022 at 3:32 pm
      Reply

      Firefox moving to Chromium is the only sensible move for Mozilla. Sticking with their own engine just means their users are going to increasingly face incompatibility issues with websites and online services as the web continues to move forward and become more complex. Some users may tolerate some incompatibility issues, but many will not and will change to a better supported browser. Also, trying to make a business use case for deploying Gecko-based Firefox in an organisation when the web is targeting Chromium/Safari will be pretty much impossible.

      The “browser war” is over, whether Firefox exists or not is irrelevant as their market share is too low to have any meaningful influence. Chrome and Safari are the browser engines that web developers are developing for, because that is what their employers/clients are willing to pay them for. Business budgets are not going to extend to pay money for development work targeting Firefox when they can target 96% of the web just by targeting Chrome and Safari. And when developing something along the lines browser-based game streaming (such as NVIDIA GeForce NOW), they will just tell users to use Chrome or Safari, which is what most people will do.

      To be clear, this is not what I wanted for the web. I would like the web to be based on open web standards and overseen by an independent non-profit organisation. However, the market has decided against that (Google had the means, motive and opportunity to ensure they dominated this space). Even Microsoft – a trillion dollar company with a dominant platform to push their browser engine – figured out that once the market had settled on two dominant platforms (Android/IOS, Chrome/Safari), it would be almost impossible to force the market against that; doing that would need to be done to coincide with another major technological shift (like Apple and Google did with smartphones).

      Therefore, Mozilla trying to make their own browser engine work is just going to bleed more money and will end with the same outcome as Windows Phone. Mozilla would be better off cutting their loses and trying to make the best of a bad situation now, whilst they still have enough money and users to try and compete with other Chromium-based browsers (Edge, Vivaldi, Brave, Opera, Samsung Internet, etc.). But even then, it will still not guarantee the future success of Firefox, as everyone without a dominant platform to push their browser will be left to compete over the scraps.

      1. OldFoxBetterBox said on March 2, 2022 at 2:39 pm
        Reply

        It is too late for that. I agree with the logic but they’d need to scrap their entire codebase, hire an entirely new dev team and start from scratch. And then do what? 2022 is year 13 of Mozilla taking away user options and ignoring user feedback. That’s not going to change.

        A large part of their remaining support is from people who like us want browser options. Why support Mozilla chrome over ungoogled chromium, vivaldi or even edge for that matter? Its over.

        Still, they’ll get to keep the world record for “Company who lost the most users in human history”. Losing half a billion customers is hard to beat

  7. Herman Cost said on February 24, 2022 at 2:51 pm
    Reply

    I’m a Firefox user for various reasons (although I also now use Vivaldi and Pale Moon), but its quite clear to me that Mozilla has little or no interest in user input/feedback. Anyone who doubted that should have convinced really quickly when Ideas was put into place, widely touted by Mozilla, and then totally ignored from the very first day. The marketing folks over there may have thought Ideas was a good PR for the company, but it seems very clear that: 1) the actual developers did not want it and simply ignored it; and 2) top management did not make the slightest effort to push the developers to use it in any way.

    The only real mystery is the internal thought process (if you can call it that) which led to the Ideas implementation in the first place.

  8. ULBoom said on February 24, 2022 at 3:17 pm
    Reply

    Those Chromium forums are great; Chrome ones even better. Suggest something, note a glitch and the responses are “Cannot replicate, Closed,” “We will NEVER allow URL bar autocomplete to be disabled even if fifty million more users request it, Closed,” “Already scheduled for implementation in two years, Closed.”

    So, this thing looks like yet another forum with a burst of initial energy, then crickets. Users will try to help each other, Mozilla listens a lot better than Google (that’s not saying much) but they already have a mechanism for submitting change requests so most responses will be “Submit a ticket. Use this link.”

    1. Andy Prough said on February 24, 2022 at 6:52 pm
      Reply

      You should try the Microsoft help forums. “Did you try the Windows Troubleshooter? Oh, it didn’t work? That’s too bad. Good luck. B-bye now.”

      1. ShintoPlasm said on February 25, 2022 at 9:46 am
        Reply

        “Please try sfc /scannow”

        Is their solution to literally every Windows problem ever.

      2. SFC Dism said on February 25, 2022 at 5:29 pm
        Reply

        You forgot:

        Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image

  9. Sam said on February 24, 2022 at 4:16 pm
    Reply

    Mozilla hasn’t improved since they booted there CEO for his personal religious beliefs, which had nothing to do with Firefox’s development. I am literally only using the browser because I need an alternative browser to use that won’t conflict with my personal and work accounts.

    1. Rex said on February 27, 2022 at 1:09 pm
      Reply

      Not only him, I’d say the entire development team from before 2010 is long gone. He’s doing great with Brave.

  10. Anonymous said on February 24, 2022 at 4:39 pm
    Reply

    Seems like Mozilla is shutting down a lot of stuff… I just wonder when they will finally shut down Mozilla and make the internet better without so much clowning around.

  11. walker said on February 25, 2022 at 8:08 am
    Reply

    >Mozilla is shutting down
    Yep, I know!

  12. computer said no said on February 25, 2022 at 12:38 pm
    Reply

    Good companies always become decadent when new management is installed.
    The mozilla of now is not the mozilla of old but is merely a registered trademark which in today’s world is what people fall for.!

    Users of the golden age of firefox will/should relate to this and as we can see the recent changes seem to have swayed off the original mission and view.

    I loved the old firefox with the customisable complete themes which is what made firefox stand out but mozilla destroyed their unique selling point and made a once great browser into something totally non unique.

    1. Rex said on February 27, 2022 at 1:10 pm
      Reply

      It’s why I switched to Pale Moon the day they announced that XUL support was going away. Pale Moon is in letter and spirit what the old Mozilla used to be, both in terms of customization and respecting privacy.

      1. OldFoxBetterBox said on March 2, 2022 at 2:53 pm
        Reply

        I do miss xul support, but 3 devs trying to maintain an up to date browser is just not realistic. And forking from Firefox 24 when they could have forked from 42 and kept xul support was a terrible decision. Also they have the same condescending dismissive attitude to user feedback as mozilla.

        Pinning my hopes on Vivaldi, which despite a few glaring flaws has the most potential

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