I’ve been thinking about Gerv’s recent summary of the What Does ‘Mozillian’ Mean? sessions from the Summit. The three criteria that came out of those sessions seem useful to me:
- Belief in the mission
- Action to support the mission
- Interaction with other community members
One way these criteria could be used is to clarify the community definitions we created a couple years ago that describe how Mozilla is made up of users, supporters, casual contributors, active contributors and core contributors.
The definitions we’ve been using are a little vague. For instance, a casual contributor is someone who has volunteered small amounts of time. But how much time is that? How does that differ from a supporter who also donates time to Mozilla?
Using these criteria can give us clearer definitions. Casual contributors and supporters both give something to help the project, but casual contributors interact with other community members (eg, going to a Bug Day) and supporters don’t (eg, making a donation).
It’s not clear though if these criteria define a Mozillian or if they define something else, such as who a Mozilla contributor is. We talked about this at last week’s Grow Mozilla discussion and there were two different thoughts.
One was that the word ‘Mozillian’ should be reserved for people who met all three criteria. Others thought that this doesn’t capture the important part of our culture that allows people to self-identify with our mission and they thought ‘Mozillian’ worked better as something inclusive that anyone could use.
I think we want words to describe both sets of people. Knowing who meets these criteria lets us do things such as figure out who we want at a Summit. Knowing who identifies with our mission lets us establish relationships with people who can become more deeply involved with the project.
I’m interested to hear what other people think. How would you define ‘Mozillian’?