The word Mozilla has been used many different ways* over time and that’s understandable—the community is big and diverse and is doing a lot of different things. There are distinctions within the community that are important to make, but I think it’s helpful to also focus on the connections that hold everything together.
It’s interesting to see how other big, distributed groups handle this. For instance, Greenpeace is composed of over 20 regional autonomous offices around the world and everything is referred to collectively as one thing. This makes it easier to understand its mission since new people don’t get bogged down in technical details that are less important than what Greenpeace does.
I’d like to see our community do a similar thing and develop a One Mozilla message. This would mean phasing out references to specifics, such as the many different Mozilla legal organizations, in favor of talking about just Mozilla.
This is already happening** and I wanted to point it out and encourage us to think through what else we could change to make our story clearer. I’ve set up a One Mozilla List of Tweaks wiki page with a few ideas and you’re welcome to add to that or leave suggestions on this post.
* I can’t resist the floor wax and dessert topping reference again…
** The Firefox 3.0.12 release mentions ‘As part of the Mozilla Corporation’s ongoing security and stability process‘ and the Firefox 3.0.13 release says ‘As part of Mozilla’s ongoing stability and security update process‘.