Manifesto/1.0 Changes

From MozillaWiki
Jump to: navigation, search

This is a list of changes we plan to make to the Mozilla Manifesto, and its presentation, to move it from 0.9 to 1.0. Please see also

Why Change It?

The Manifesto had been at version 0.9 for several years. It remained there to pick up input from translators. No significant input emerged from that source but it was felt that, given that some time had passed, before labelling it 1.0 we should go through a process to make sure it was still the best expression of Mozilla's principles. So input was gathered from groups of Mozillians at various community events, and online, and the following three textual changes were finally proposed and agreed by Mitchell. The reason for each particular change is documented in that change's section of this page.

We also want to make changes to the presentation to give it an up-to-date look and feel and provide ways for people to take action based on their agreement.


Include explicit reference to privacy

Rationale: this is an oft-commented-upon omission. Originally, we thought "security" would include privacy, but people don't read it that way. And Mozilla is very active on the privacy front.

Proposal: change principle 4):

 Individuals' security on the Internet is fundamental and cannot be treated as optional.


 Individuals' security and privacy on the Internet are fundamental and cannot be treated as optional.

Against: no good arguments, unless we decide to make no changes at all.

Reduce all principles to < 140 characters

Rationale: it would be good if every principle was tweetable. If we want to promote them in snippets, shorter is also better.


Character counts are as follows:

 1.  157
 2.   78
 3.   64
 4.  100 (including "privacy" change)
 5.   81
 6.  174
 7.   92
 8.   87
 9.  146
 10. 117

So principles 1, 6 and 9 would need shortening. Here are proposals:

 1: The Internet is an integral part ofto modern life – a key component in education, communication, collaboration, business, entertainment and society as a whole. (117)
 6: The effectiveness of the Internet as a public resource depends upon interoperability  (protocols, data formats, content), innovation and decentralized participation worldwide. (139)
 9: Commercial involvement in the development of the Internet brings many benefits; a balance between commercial goals and public benefit is critical. (127)

Against: It's unnecessary churn; people will assume we are making semantic changes, or it's a cover for something.

Update: We now have a suggestion to reduce the principles to 118 characters or less. Only 6 and 9 would still need shortening. Here are proposals:

6: As a public resource, the Internet depends on interoperability, innovation and decentralized participation worldwide. (118)

9: A balance between commercial goals and public benefit is critical and brings many benefits. (92)

Second Update

When these changes were brought to Governance, a new proposal emerged to move all the shortened versions to a "Twitter version," treating the Twitter version as if it were a translation. That proposal was agreed to, and now all shortened versions will be moved to Twitter version.

Beef up references to "web literacy"

Rationale: web literacy is very important, and Mozilla wants to promote it. This is what Webmaker is all about. Principle #5 ("Individuals must have the ability to shape their own experiences on the Internet") sounds a bit like "web apps must be skinnable". Can we reword to make stronger?

Proposal: Change to shaping the Internet, not just one's own experiences. Reword principle 5:

 Individuals must have the ability to shape their own experiences on the Internet.


 Individuals must have the ability to shape the Internet, and their own experiences on it.

This now sounds like it could be a motto for the Webmaker movement.

Against: change does not have significant enough impact to be worth the churn.


Update manifesto page to look more beautiful

Rationale: we're not in 1998 any more; the web has awesome capabilities and we should make use of them.

Proposal: increase font size to something readable; find and use an appropriate web font (like we've done with the MPL 2); convert to the current standard Mozilla styling.

Against: Er... user choice means using the user's font and size settings.

Add social media buttons to page

Rationale: This is how users communicate today; we need to make people more aware of what Mozilla stands for, and allow them to easily share that with their contacts.

Proposal: Add social media buttons of various sorts - Google+, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest. It is essential that we use hacked versions which protect privacy. There should be a small link next to them, "protecting your privacy", which leads to a separate page explaining the issue, explaining how we are protecting the reader from it, and commenting that this is Mozilla living out manifesto principle 4.

Against: these services change over time; they are also not all good embodiments of the manifesto principles, even if we manage to link to them in a privacy-respecting manner.

Allow people to pledge support

Rationale: online petitions and statements of principles often allow companies and individuals to pledge support. A list of supporting organizations would be a powerful indication of who the good guys are.

Proposal: High up page in a side column, have an "add your name"/"sign-on" ask, including an email opt-in. Also, provide banners/badges people can add to their own sites, akin to the Internet Defense League. Lastly, provide some sort of visualization of the signers (either scrolling names, something showing geographic breadth & depth, etc.)

Against: requires significant web development; curation of "best of" list is politically sensitive; does it actually achieve anything?

Allow people to sign up for supportive activities

Rationale: if people are inspired by the manifesto, we need to direct them to become contributors and advance it.

Proposal: We want a link to the Get Involved page somewhere, although not as a featured action. The post-pledge page will be a donation page.

Against: None.

Provide teaching resources

Rationale: we need to help Mozillians explain manifesto values to others.

Proposal: Create teaching resource guide for the Manifesto with e.g. slide deck, talking points etc.

Against: Are the manifesto pages themselves the right place for this? Doesn't a presentation need to be made anew for each audience?

Language geolocation

Rationale: We should take people straight to the right text rather than asking them to choose.

Proposal: Using existing language geolocation infrastructure to make the landing page be, as far as possible, in the user's chosen language, with English as the fallback.

Against: Language and location are not 1:1 correlated. Does this need an override in case it gets it wrong? What does the current site do?


Add manifesto references and links to our products

Rationale: we want to bring ordinary users into contact with the manifesto principles.

Proposal: Add link to the principles in our product's about: and/or about:rights and/or about:license pages

Against: Why bother? Few people read those pages.

Make principles into snippets or Facebook updates

Rationale: we want to bring ordinary users into contact with the manifesto principles.

Proposal: put the 10 principles in low rotation as snippets, and get the Facebook team to turn 1 a month into statuses for the "Firefox" and/or "Mozilla" pages and monitor feedback.

Against: this sort of communication may not be appropriate for these two channels.

Project Team

  • Project leaders: Stacy Martin, Gerv Markham
  • WebDev: Kohei
  • Designer: Christopher Appleton
  • UX: Holly Habstritt
  • Project Manager: Mike Alexis
  • Product Manager: Jen Bertsch
  • Foundation stakeholders: Geoffrey MacDougall, Andrea Wood, Holly Hasbritt
  • Engagement stakeholders: Winston Bowden, Carmen Collins, Michaela Thayer


Wireframes 2013-09-06



  • product =, component = pages and content.
  • May want to submit Twitter version in more languages in future.


Localization notes:

  • 2 weeks is the strict minimum, 4 to 5 weeks for work that can be planned in advance is preferred
  • File a bug ( product, L10N component) assigned to localization owner
  • Text must be in codebase


Governance Post for Manifesto Update

Project Management


Schedule (updated Sept 23)