Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby KnightExemplar » Thu Apr 10, 2014 7:52 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:
KnightExemplar wrote:But the number of protests against Firefox has grown over the handling of Brendan Eich.
Maybe because people keep making the mistake the NoZilla group is doing; mincing 'freedom of speech' with 'ramifications for actions'?


From your perspective, it is "confusion"

But from my perspective, it is not.

And based on how the discussion has grown, I don't think we'll be able to reconcile our differences. But I take this as a lesson on politics: you will always find haters, no matter what path you take. It isn't a valid business practice to sacrifice your employees to the crowd.

Fortunately, the discussion around here is around the deeper issue of political viewpoints, their roles in CEOs and so forth. But there are plenty of comments in this thread which try to be populist... populism almost never works out... and it certainly won't work here.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby Izawwlgood » Thu Apr 10, 2014 7:59 pm UTC

The link you provided isn't a reasonable discussion. When you claim what happened was '[Eich] was forced to resign for supporting the true definition of marriage, a legal union between 1 man and 1 woman.', you've convinced me that your opinion on the matter will not be nuanced.

I give NoZilla about as much intellectual credence as One Million Moms or Glenn Beck's show. It's not that I don't acknowledge many/some people hold similar views, it's that I don't think they're doing anything to promote a dialog, and that dialoging with them is a sure way to make you want to /headdesk.

So, yeah, I maintain that it's 'confusion over the difference between freedom of speech and ramifications of actions'. No one is silencing Eich, or telling him to not donate money to whatever he wants. They're just saying that donating to some places aren't in line with the companies outlook, and he won't be welcome to continue working for the company. I feel like you're willfully ignoring a handful of points that were raised about the specifics of this event.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:00 pm UTC

Oh please, the people boycotting Mozilla over the firing of Eich are homophobic twats that are only rallying behind "free speech" because it sounds less awful. Just like the people who rally behind "states rights" when it comes to things like voter protections never seem to show up to oppose the Defence of Marriage Act. What, the federal government telling the States what is and is not marriage isn't a violation of states rights?

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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby KnightExemplar » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:00 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:The link you provided isn't a reasonable discussion. When you claim what happened was '[Eich] was forced to resign for supporting the true definition of marriage, a legal union between 1 man and 1 woman.', you've convinced me that your opinion on the matter will not be nuanced.


I already stated that I disagree with both the OkCupid and #NoZilla protests.

Both are detrimental to Mozilla and I'm against them both. However, in the interest of sharing facts with the discussion, I thought I'd inform you of #NoZilla.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby Izawwlgood » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:02 pm UTC

Sure. I think the discussion about 'information providers' getting involved in politics is an interesting one.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby morriswalters » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:04 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Free speech is the ability to march down Main Street wearing a Klan robe. Free association is the ability to fire the person wearing Klan robes.
Is that true? So I could fire you for being a Democrat, or a Republican, or a Mouseketeer? Or being Gay, or Black or Asian.

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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby KnightExemplar » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:06 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:Free speech is the ability to march down Main Street wearing a Klan robe. Free association is the ability to fire the person wearing Klan robes.
Is that true? So I could fire you for being a Democrat, or a Republican, or a Mouseketeer? Or being Gay, or Black or Asian.


Indeed. If we replace "Klan robe" with "Rainbow March", all of a sudden people will be rather pissed at that situation. Would it really be "Free Speech" or "Free Association" if someone were to fire you because they saw you at the "wrong side" of a Gay Rights protest?

That is why I find rules that force people to work together important. People will always have a difference in political opinion, but it is important to work together in spite of that.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby setzer777 » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:17 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:Free speech is the ability to march down Main Street wearing a Klan robe. Free association is the ability to fire the person wearing Klan robes.
Is that true? So I could fire you for being a Democrat, or a Republican, or a Mouseketeer? Or being Gay, or Black or Asian.


Yes. Except for "Black or Asian", since race is a federally protected class.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:19 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:Free speech is the ability to march down Main Street wearing a Klan robe. Free association is the ability to fire the person wearing Klan robes.
Is that true? So I could fire you for being a Democrat, or a Republican, or a Mouseketeer? Or being Gay, or Black or Asian.
If those things are a financial liability for the company you're the public face of, or are antithetical to what the company stands for, and are not protected classes, then yes.

I would be shocked if, for example, an organization campaigning to elect Romney *didn't* fire a pro-Obama Democrat from its leadership positions.

Of course you couldn't fire me for being Black or Asian, because race is protected, and in some places you couldn't fire me for being gay for the same reason. But even then I'm pretty sure you would retain the right to fire me for being politically active about those things if that political action ran against the interests of the company.

KnightExemplar wrote:
morriswalters wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:Free speech is the ability to march down Main Street wearing a Klan robe. Free association is the ability to fire the person wearing Klan robes.
Is that true? So I could fire you for being a Democrat, or a Republican, or a Mouseketeer? Or being Gay, or Black or Asian.

Indeed. If we replace "Klan robe" with "Rainbow March", all of a sudden people will be rather pissed at that situation. Would it really be "Free Speech" or "Free Association" if someone were to fire you because they saw you at the "wrong side" of a Gay Rights protest?

Absolutely. As we've been saying since the very beginning of this discussion, but which you still apparently can't get through your little brain, any anger about that firing would be anger at the homophobia of the organization itself, not at their right to fire someone for actively supporting gay rights.

That is why I find rules that force people to work together important. People will always have a difference in political opinion, but it is important to work together in spite of that.
Once again we arenot talking about a mere difference of opinion and once again this has never been about anyone's opinion. You talk about rules that would require the NAACP to keep quiet racists on its staff, but in the context of what everyone else here is discussing (because it's the context of what actually happened with Eich), you're really advocating rules that would require the NAACP to keep the fucking Grand Dragon of the KKK himself on staff.

I'm not sure whether that makes you stupidly naive or just stupidly horrible.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby KnightExemplar » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:24 pm UTC

Once again we arenot talking about a mere difference of opinion and once again this has never been about anyone's opinion. You talk about rules that would require the NAACP to keep quiet racists on its staff, but in the context of what everyone else here is discussing (because it's the context of what actually happened with Eich), you're really advocating rules that would require the NAACP to keep the fucking Grand Dragon of the KKK himself on staff.


Eich was keeping his viewpoints quiet and secret for the last 10 years yo... as far as I know.

Baker said that she had not known about Eich’s views on gay marriage throughout most of their working relationship, until the donation came to light last year.


I see this case far closer to the former "Quiet Racist" example than the latter.
Last edited by KnightExemplar on Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:29 pm UTC, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby morriswalters » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:24 pm UTC

Mostly CEO's are contractual employees and don't have the same protections as others, or so I believe. So the situation isn't truly analogous. As a personal statement I like to know that a man is guilty of the crimes for which he hangs. And if he is guilty, than Mozilla should follow him out the door, they more than anyone, knew him. Which in my mind makes them complicit. I value loyalty highly, over perfection, in friends and coworkers. I'm jaded though.

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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby setzer777 » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:32 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:@ setzer777
Good to know, now I can continue my program to make it impossible for Mouseketeers to ear a living.


Just remember to check your state and local ordinances first - some have broader employee protections, though I'd be surprised if any extended that far.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby KnightExemplar » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:41 pm UTC

Legality vs Morality debate aisde, I think it is safe to say that most people in this discussion are worried about the moral hazard in this situation... not the legal one.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:46 pm UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:I see this case far closer to the former "Quiet Racist" example than the latter.
Except donating $1000 in a concerted effort to withhold rights from gays and lesbians wishing to get married goes way beyond being quietly homophobic.

But again, now you're admitting to matters of degree, whereas all the "logic" you've been using seems to apply equally to the quiet racist as to the Grand Dragon.

KnightExemplar wrote:I think it is safe to say that most people in this discussion are worried about the moral hazard in this situation... not the legal one.
I would start to believe you if you stopped spewing nonsense about how this is a freedom of expression issue.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby leady » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:55 pm UTC

$1000 to this chap is hardly concerted - more like me chucking a fiver into a tin.

Also I can think of multiple reasons that someone maybe against gay marriage of which I'll acknowledge bigotry is one and possibly the roots of a couple more.

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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby Izawwlgood » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:59 pm UTC

leady wrote:Also I can think of multiple reasons that someone maybe against gay marriage of which I'll acknowledge bigotry is one and possibly the roots of a couple more.
I daresay his reasons are entirely irrelevant. Supporting the limitation of a minorities rights is a poor way to demonstrate you, say, don't believe in the institution of marriage.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby setzer777 » Thu Apr 10, 2014 9:02 pm UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:It isn't a valid business practice to sacrifice your employees to the crowd.


Depends on how big and powerful the crowd is. It's quite possible Mozilla miscalculated the level of risk of keeping Eich (assuming that was the primary motivator of his resignation), but there is a such thing as someone having views so unpopular that you can't keep them in a public-facing position.

I don't see a moral hazard there - I don't think employers should dig into employees lives looking for shit, but I have no moral objection to companies letting people go because of massive negative publicity - without regard to how much the information coming out was or wasn't that person's fault.

If I worked at Hobby Lobby, and somehow it came out that I used to perform abortions (and I was in a prominent enough position for this to cause a shit storm), I'd expect them to demand my resignation, unless they were planning on massively shifting their company's official stance.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Apr 10, 2014 9:09 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:
leady wrote:Also I can think of multiple reasons that someone maybe against gay marriage of which I'll acknowledge bigotry is one and possibly the roots of a couple more.
I daresay his reasons are entirely irrelevant. Supporting the limitation of a minorities rights is a poor way to demonstrate you, say, don't believe in the institution of marriage.
Yeah, I'm not sure I should particularly worry about why you're actively working against people I care about, when I'm judging you negatively for working against people I care about.

I can think of multiple reasons you might step on my foot, too, and not all of them are malicious. Doesn't change the fact that I still want you to get the fuck off my foot.

Hershele Ostropoler wrote:If you step on my foot, you need to get off my foot.

If you step on my foot without meaning to, you need to get off my foot.

If you step on my foot without realizing it, you need to get off my foot.

If everyone in your culture steps on feet, your culture is horrible, and you need to get off my foot.

If you have foot-stepping disease, and it makes you unaware you’re stepping on feet, you need to get off my foot. If an event has rules designed to keep people from stepping on feet, you need to follow them. If you think that even with the rules, you won’t be able to avoid stepping on people’s feet, absent yourself from the event until you work something out.

If you’re a serial foot-stepper, and you feel you’re entitled to step on people’s feet because you’re just that awesome and they’re not really people anyway, you’re a bad person and you don’t get to use any of those excuses, limited as they are. And moreover, you need to get off my foot.

See, that’s why I don’t get the focus on classifying harassers and figuring out their motives. The victims are just as harassed either way.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby KnightExemplar » Fri Apr 11, 2014 2:15 am UTC

setzer777 wrote:I don't see a moral hazard there - I don't think employers should dig into employees lives looking for shit, but I have no moral objection to companies letting people go because of massive negative publicity - without regard to how much the information coming out was or wasn't that person's fault.


In which case, Ormurinn's graph is quite relevant.

viewtopic.php?f=9&t=108573&start=200#p3567106

The "massive publicity" you're talking about is a minor blip in the great scheme of things... and is certainly smaller than the #NoZilla protest that is now picking up steam. I don't really know why I'm going down this road btw, because I just disagree strongly about this whole "public opinion should drive firings" thing.

If I worked at Hobby Lobby, and somehow it came out that I used to perform abortions (and I was in a prominent enough position for this to cause a shit storm), I'd expect them to demand my resignation, unless they were planning on massively shifting their company's official stance.


If you weren't very interested in the success of Hobby Lobby, perhaps. But I'm pretty interested in the long-term survival of Mozilla. Expecting random politically-based resignations huts a company, no matter how you slice it. Company employees prefer to believe that their work environments are meritocracies... you get promoted based on merit and work ethic. Generally speaking, political opinions are completely irrelevant to your ability to run a store, lead programmers or whatever.

Again, seeing highly qualified expert programmers let go by a a company because they disagree on a tangential political topic amounts to a self-inflicted wound.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby Izawwlgood » Fri Apr 11, 2014 2:19 am UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:In which case, Ormurinn's graph is quite relevant.
Except his graph is committing two... headdeskingly annoying glaring errors:

1 ) It is presuming that all protest against Eich before hand was 'gay protests', and it is similarly assuming all protest after is 'Christian protest that was ignored'.
2 ) It is ignoring that the initial protest against Eich was levied BY EMPLOYEES OF MOZILLA. I understand that public image of the company is important, but the feeling of the WORKERS surely counts for something here.

KnightExemplar wrote:Again, seeing highly qualified expert programmers let go by a a company because they disagree on a tangential political topic amounts to a self-inflicted wound.
But again, he wasn't hired to be a programmer, he was hired to be a CEO. While I'm sure his programming skills are second to none, they are in many ways completely irrelevant to his abilities to manage a company.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby Carlington » Fri Apr 11, 2014 2:37 am UTC

"Public opinion should drive firings" is not the argument being made. I refuse to believe that you don't know that yet, so I'm going to ask you now to stop constructing strawmen and start responding to the actual argument, or else stop responding at all. In truth, you're not actually that far away from the actual argument being made - you're just missing a couple of crucial words, that change the meaning by a non-trivial amount. The argument being made, for the umpteenth time, is that "Public opinion should drive firings, if one of the requirements of your job is maintaining positive public opinion".

So, KnightExemplar - it turns out we actually agree on the overarching points of the matter; if not the finer details. We agree that an employee's worth to a company should be measured on their merits, their ability to perform the job they have been hired to do. We agree, in other words, that companies should provide their employees with a meritocratic environment. Where we disagree, it seems, is on the point that a CEO is not the same as any other employee in a company. A CEO has different job requirements than does a janitor, or a programmer, or a salesperson, or any other job in a company. A janitor's performance is measured by how efficiently and how thoroughly they clean things. A programmer's performance is measured by how efficiently, and how quickly, and how effectively they write code, and on the quality of the code they write. A salesperson's performance is measured by how many sales they make, and the value of the items being sold.

Here's the crucial point. Here's the thing I have been driving at in every post I've made in this thread, and here is the thing that you seem to disagree with (either that, or you're flat-out determined to ignore it):
A CEO's performance is measured by how well the company they control performs. It is a CEO's responsibility to ensure that the company they control remains profitable. The profits of the company depend directly on the actions of its clients. If the clients stop giving their money to the company, the company's profits suffer. If this is a result of the actions of a CEO, then the CEO has failed his responsibility to ensure that the company remains profitable, and thus has failed to perform his job. Failure to perform one's job usually results in losing one's job.

I'm not even sure what the hang up is, here. Do you follow football (not hand-egg), KnightExemplar? The manager of a football team can be sacked for any number of arbitrary reasons. If the fans don't like the manager, or don't like the decisions he's making, then they'll stop coming to games, and the club will lose money. If that happens for long enough, the manager will be sacked. It just recently happened to the football team I follow here in Australia. Now, I grant you, the most likely reason that the supporters of a football team will dislike the manager is because the team isn't winning games - but that's not the only reason. They may not like which players he hires, or how the club is run in general. It's entirely possible that they'll disagree strongly with an opinion he makes public. He doesn't even have to be a homophobe, or a racist, or any sort of person-that-attacks-protected-classes. Maybe he is vocally against the culture of the club's supporters, and wishes it would change. Maybe the supporters are hooligans. None of those things matter, however - what matters is that regardless of their reasons (again, assuming we're not infringing on the rights of any protected class), they (the supporters, the customers, etc.) are well within their rights to "vote with their wallets" and potentially cost [the CEO, the football club manager, the person in charge] their job.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby CorruptUser » Fri Apr 11, 2014 2:53 am UTC

@Carlington

Minor nitpick but in "hand-egg", coaches do indeed get fired if public opinion turns on them enough that it costs "hand-egg" teams money. Really, every sport works this way.

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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby Carlington » Fri Apr 11, 2014 3:11 am UTC

Mildly off-topic response to CorruptUser, spoilering in case:
Spoiler:
Ah, I wasn't sure. I don't really follow sports much at all, and the one sport I was absolutely certain worked that way was football. Thank you for the information, though, today I learned something!
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby CorruptUser » Fri Apr 11, 2014 3:34 am UTC

Sports rant

Spoiler:
It's one of my criticisms of professional sports. They aren't there to win, but to put on a show. Take The Great Bambino from baseball. What the Yankees had is considered to be the greatest pitcher of all time. But what did they do with him? They made him a batter. Why? Because more people showed up for the home runs than for the strike-outs.

In the end, it doesn't matter who's better but who looks the best doing it, because that's what puts asses in the seats. If all that matters is the show, then it doesn't matter one bit if it's a real game or entirely scripted. The performance enhancing drugs aren't important (at least beyond health) because there is no such thing as "cheating" when it comes to acting.

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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby elasto » Fri Apr 11, 2014 3:56 am UTC

Carlington wrote:"Public opinion should drive firings" is not the argument being made. I refuse to believe that you don't know that yet, so I'm going to ask you now to stop constructing strawmen and start responding to the actual argument, or else stop responding at all. In truth, you're not actually that far away from the actual argument being made - you're just missing a couple of crucial words, that change the meaning by a non-trivial amount. The argument being made, for the umpteenth time, is that "Public opinion should drive firings, if one of the requirements of your job is maintaining positive public opinion".

So, KnightExemplar - it turns out we actually agree on the overarching points of the matter; if not the finer details. We agree that an employee's worth to a company should be measured on their merits, their ability to perform the job they have been hired to do. We agree, in other words, that companies should provide their employees with a meritocratic environment. Where we disagree, it seems, is on the point that a CEO is not the same as any other employee in a company. A CEO has different job requirements than does a janitor, or a programmer, or a salesperson, or any other job in a company. A janitor's performance is measured by how efficiently and how thoroughly they clean things. A programmer's performance is measured by how efficiently, and how quickly, and how effectively they write code, and on the quality of the code they write. A salesperson's performance is measured by how many sales they make, and the value of the items being sold.

Here's the crucial point. Here's the thing I have been driving at in every post I've made in this thread, and here is the thing that you seem to disagree with (either that, or you're flat-out determined to ignore it):
A CEO's performance is measured by how well the company they control performs. It is a CEO's responsibility to ensure that the company they control remains profitable. The profits of the company depend directly on the actions of its clients. If the clients stop giving their money to the company, the company's profits suffer. If this is a result of the actions of a CEO, then the CEO has failed his responsibility to ensure that the company remains profitable, and thus has failed to perform his job. Failure to perform one's job usually results in losing one's job.

I'm not even sure what the hang up is, here. Do you follow football (not hand-egg), KnightExemplar? The manager of a football team can be sacked for any number of arbitrary reasons. If the fans don't like the manager, or don't like the decisions he's making, then they'll stop coming to games, and the club will lose money. If that happens for long enough, the manager will be sacked. It just recently happened to the football team I follow here in Australia. Now, I grant you, the most likely reason that the supporters of a football team will dislike the manager is because the team isn't winning games - but that's not the only reason. They may not like which players he hires, or how the club is run in general. It's entirely possible that they'll disagree strongly with an opinion he makes public. He doesn't even have to be a homophobe, or a racist, or any sort of person-that-attacks-protected-classes. Maybe he is vocally against the culture of the club's supporters, and wishes it would change. Maybe the supporters are hooligans. None of those things matter, however - what matters is that regardless of their reasons (again, assuming we're not infringing on the rights of any protected class), they (the supporters, the customers, etc.) are well within their rights to "vote with their wallets" and potentially cost [the CEO, the football club manager, the person in charge] their job.


Very well said.

We're 7 pages in and there have been many attempts to make this point - I did so myself back in the prior thread - but you really ram it home: The CEO isn't simply a dry technical position, it has a PR dimension - no different to football managers, politicians and many other public-facing roles - and Eich clearly sucked at the PR and damage-limitation side of his role here.

As I said before, there is nothing stopping Eich making paid or unpaid contributions as chief coder at Mozilla or anywhere else. He can still achieve everything he wishes to. He just can't be the public face of Mozilla (or can't cope with the pressure of doing so, at least).

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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby KnightExemplar » Fri Apr 11, 2014 4:08 am UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:
KnightExemplar wrote:In which case, Ormurinn's graph is quite relevant.
Except his graph is committing two... headdeskingly annoying glaring errors:

1 ) It is presuming that all protest against Eich before hand was 'gay protests', and it is similarly assuming all protest after is 'Christian protest that was ignored'.


Agreed. Its poor evidence, but its evidence nonetheless.

Considering that You, Belial, and other members of this forum are satisfied with the resignation of Brendan Eich... I'd bet that most pro-gay marriage supporters are similarly happy with the chain of events that have occurred. They have also had more than a week to learn of the news.

There are a number of innate assumptions with that graph... but unless you got some better statistics, I'm going to have to grab Occam's Razor and assume the obvious.

2 ) It is ignoring that the initial protest against Eich was levied BY EMPLOYEES OF MOZILLA. I understand that public image of the company is important, but the feeling of the WORKERS surely counts for something here.


Q: Was Brendan Eich forced out by employee pressure?

A: No. Mozilla employees expressed a wide range of views on Brendan’s appointment as CEO: the majority of them positive and in support of his leadership, or expressing disappointment in Brendan’s support of Proposition 8 but that they nonetheless felt he would be a good leader for Mozilla. A small number (fewer than 10) called for his resignation, none of whom reported to Brendan directly. However media coverage focused disproportionately on the small number of negative comments — largely ignoring the wide range of reactions across the Mozilla community.

Mozilla’s culture of openness extends to encouraging our staff and community to be candid about their views on Mozilla’s direction, including during and after Brendan’s appointment as CEO. We’re proud of that openness and how it distinguishes Mozilla from most organizations.


It seems like most of Mozilla shares my opinion: which is support for Brendan Eich in some form. Even if there is disagreement in Proposition8, the vast majority of Mozilla employees supported Brendan, including Chairwoman Mitchell Baker.

Carlington wrote:Here's the crucial point. Here's the thing I have been driving at in every post I've made in this thread, and here is the thing that you seem to disagree with (either that, or you're flat-out determined to ignore it):
A CEO's performance is measured by how well the company they control performs. It is a CEO's responsibility to ensure that the company they control remains profitable. The profits of the company depend directly on the actions of its clients. If the clients stop giving their money to the company, the company's profits suffer. If this is a result of the actions of a CEO, then the CEO has failed his responsibility to ensure that the company remains profitable, and thus has failed to perform his job. Failure to perform one's job usually results in losing one's job.


And this is what makes it hard for me to take your message seriously. The Mozilla Corporation may be a for-profit company, but its a subcompany of the non-profit Mozilla Foundation. Their explicit goal is to keep the internet an open, standards-based communication medium. Neither the Mozilla Company nor the Mozilla Foundation have strayed away from this goal for 15 years. As CEO of Mozilla Corporation, it would be Brendan Eich's job to continue Mozilla's direction. I would expect that one of the founders of the Mozilla Foundation would run the subcompany Mozilla Corporation with the same direction that its parent non-profit wishes it to go towards.

Now LaserGuy almost had a point about CEOs "leading employees", but unfortunately, his argument disagrees with the facts. With over 1000 employees (statistically, more than ~38 LGBT individuals), and fewer than 10 protesters within the company... even the majority of LGBT individuals were supportive of Brenden Eich.

As for your perception of CEOs... perhaps it would be true for a more typical company. But no, the Mozilla Corporation is not driven by profits, nor is it driven by clients. It is a for-profit arm of the non-profit Mozilla Corporation(to simplify tax issues), who's goal is to continue pushing for non-corporate and open control of the internet.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby mike-l » Fri Apr 11, 2014 6:10 am UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:As for your perception of CEOs... perhaps it would be true for a more typical company. But no, the Mozilla Corporation is not driven by profits, nor is it driven by clients. It is a for-profit arm of the non-profit Mozilla Corporation(to simplify tax issues), who's goal is to continue pushing for non-corporate and open control of the internet.

Not being profit driven, or even being not for profit, does not mean you don't care about money, it just means you have a different destination for it, eg towards promoting an open internet as opposed to shareholder's wallets. If your CEO is hampering your ability to raise funds, it's hurting your business, no matter what your goal.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby leady » Fri Apr 11, 2014 9:03 am UTC

I think the CEO having to respond to public pressures more would have more weight if that was the flow of events

My suspicion would be that if you asked 100 people whether Mr as CEO of Mozilla should stand down for donating $1000 to Prop 8 then then

90% would say "whos Eich, whats Mozilla and whats Prop 8?"
9% would shug
1% would go "ooh thats not good" and proceed to do nothing

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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby Belial » Fri Apr 11, 2014 11:28 am UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:With over 1000 employees (statistically, more than ~38 LGBT individuals), and fewer than 10 protesters within the company...


I think it's a bit idiotic to assume perfect statistical representation in a corporate environment (since, you know, discrimination in hiring and environment is, like, a thing) and also to assume that everyone who has a problem in a corporation can and will risk their job to protest it.

I think, generally, you can assume that if 10 different people within a 1000 person company are willing to stand up and risk firing by criticizing their boss publicly, that there are probably at least twice as many silently supporting.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby leady » Fri Apr 11, 2014 11:39 am UTC

Belial wrote:
KnightExemplar wrote:I think, generally, you can assume that if 10 different people within a 1000 person company are willing to stand up and risk firing by criticizing their boss publicly, that there are probably at least twice as many silently supporting.


Except I think this thread establishes that the view point that leads to firings is the opposite one. Employees flagging up perceived homophobia are (correctly) protected to high heaven.

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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby gmalivuk » Fri Apr 11, 2014 11:45 am UTC

That may be the case now with this particular company, but it has not been the case for the vast majority of companies in anyone's living memory, so it's still reasonable to assume that others were against Eich but chose not to say anything about it.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby Izawwlgood » Fri Apr 11, 2014 11:46 am UTC

@KE:
Eich appointed CEO March 24th
Employees start protesting as early March 27th.

Unless I have my timeline incorrect, Mozilla employees protested the appointment of Eich a mere 3 days after it was announced. To repeat myself, EMPLOYEES started the protests against Eich. The statement about Eich not being forced out BY employees may be correct, as there was additional board and media involvement, but lets dispense with this 'minority of homosexual lobby protesting a non issue' line here.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby leady » Fri Apr 11, 2014 12:23 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:That may be the case now with this particular company, but it has not been the case for the vast majority of companies in anyone's living memory, so it's still reasonable to assume that others were against Eich but chose not to say anything about it.


Oh come now - the average employee age in Mozilla will be lower than 30 and they will never have gone through the less tolerant 70s and early 80s where the inverse chilling effects of "don't ask don't tell" would have applied.

As an experiment (and I haven't cheated by looking honest) can you find an example of someone being fired for being pro-gay rights in a senior position. My guess will be yes but it will very hard to find examples because I think they'll predate the internet. People aren't stupid and if there is a aura of fear for politic and social perspectives then I'm pretty sure they aren't brought up by the people involved - which I'd submit is the debate here.

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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby Belial » Fri Apr 11, 2014 12:37 pm UTC

leady wrote:
gmalivuk wrote:That may be the case now with this particular company, but it has not been the case for the vast majority of companies in anyone's living memory, so it's still reasonable to assume that others were against Eich but chose not to say anything about it.


Oh come now - the average employee age in Mozilla will be lower than 30 and they will never have gone through the less tolerant 70s and early 80s where the inverse chilling effects of "don't ask don't tell" would have applied.

As an experiment (and I haven't cheated by looking honest) can you find an example of someone being fired for being pro-gay rights in a senior position. My guess will be yes but it will very hard to find examples because I think they'll predate the internet. People aren't stupid and if there is a aura of fear for politic and social perspectives then I'm pretty sure they aren't brought up by the people involved - which I'd submit is the debate here.


Why is that question relevant when what we're talking about is employees speaking up against management? Wouldn't it be more relevant to ask for examples of employees fired for speaking up against management for discrimination reasons? Because I suspect you'd find a lot more of those.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby gmalivuk » Fri Apr 11, 2014 12:49 pm UTC

Even if they didn't feel they would be literally risking their jobs, there's still plenty of reason not to rock the boat at a company you mostly like even if you think the CEO is terrible.

KnightExemplar is not just supposing that people who remained silent must not have *strongly* minded EIch as CEO, he's saying that they must have actually *supported* him. Which is stupid on its face, even if we disregard historically and currently justified fears of speaking out against management.

Like, in KE's world, everyone who isn't near one extreme (disliking Eich as CEO enough to openly protest) is therefore near the opposite (being positively supportive of Eich). This is almost never true in any continuum of human feeling, ever, so I don't know why KE is claiming it must be true in this case.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby Izawwlgood » Fri Apr 11, 2014 1:13 pm UTC

leady wrote:As an experiment (and I haven't cheated by looking honest) can you find an example of someone being fired for being pro-gay rights in a senior position. My guess will be yes but it will very hard to find examples because I think they'll predate the internet. People aren't stupid and if there is a aura of fear for politic and social perspectives then I'm pretty sure they aren't brought up by the people involved - which I'd submit is the debate here.
To make my point, I'll ask you how many openly atheist Presidents the US has had. Yes; having a counter culture position is a sure fire way to not be promoted or even lose your job, historically, in the US. If the notion of minorities being passed over for promotion is new to you, I'm a bit concerned.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby KnightExemplar » Fri Apr 11, 2014 1:26 pm UTC

And I think it is reasonable to expect less than 10 (ie: a statistical anomaly) to disagree with the CEO but still work with them. I mean, you need 10 people before most statistical measures are even valid.

mike-l wrote:
KnightExemplar wrote:As for your perception of CEOs... perhaps it would be true for a more typical company. But no, the Mozilla Corporation is not driven by profits, nor is it driven by clients. It is a for-profit arm of the non-profit Mozilla Corporation(to simplify tax issues), who's goal is to continue pushing for non-corporate and open control of the internet.

Not being profit driven, or even being not for profit, does not mean you don't care about money, it just means you have a different destination for it, eg towards promoting an open internet as opposed to shareholder's wallets. If your CEO is hampering your ability to raise funds, it's hurting your business, no matter what your goal.


OkCupid was not tied to the revenue stream of Mozilla. The biggest sources of revenue are Google and Microsoft, who are paying Mozilla for the #1 and #2 slot on the top-right toolbar.

Izawwlgood wrote:@KE:
Eich appointed CEO March 24th
Employees start protesting as early March 27th.

Unless I have my timeline incorrect, Mozilla employees protested the appointment of Eich a mere 3 days after it was announced. To repeat myself, EMPLOYEES started the protests against Eich. The statement about Eich not being forced out BY employees may be correct, as there was additional board and media involvement, but lets dispense with this 'minority of homosexual lobby protesting a non issue' line here.


Those are not my words, and you know it. Anyway, I'll accept your argument on the surface, because it matches closely to what you said. Too many people are claiming "strawman" in this thread, so... yeah.

Yes, your words of "employees starting protests" is technically correct, but it holds a connotation that I'm uncomfortable with granting to your argument. It is that point of view that I'm disagreeing with. A small fraction of a fraction of Mozilla expressed concern over Eich's appointment, none of whom were directly related to anything Eich has done. And yes, I'm aware that companies aren't statistical samples... but so are statistical samples of less than 10. My point is that the number of protesters are abnormally small.

But for what its worth, sure, employees were involved with the start of the protests.

Belial wrote:
KnightExemplar wrote:With over 1000 employees (statistically, more than ~38 LGBT individuals), and fewer than 10 protesters within the company...


I think it's a bit idiotic to assume perfect statistical representation in a corporate environment (since, you know, discrimination in hiring and environment is, like, a thing) and also to assume that everyone who has a problem in a corporation can and will risk their job to protest it.

I think, generally, you can assume that if 10 different people within a 1000 person company are willing to stand up and risk firing by criticizing their boss publicly, that there are probably at least twice as many silently supporting.


I am not of the opinion that the Mozilla Foundation has any anti-LGBT reputation which would skew the results. If you have evidence to the contrary, please lay it out. We aren't talking about some abstract entity here, we're talking about one of the most open and transparent companies on the internet.

Anyway, the precise number of individuals has not been released, and 10 is a rather small number to work with. So sure, statistics stop really working here, since we haven't gathered enough protesters yet. Nevertheless, even if we double the number of protesers or triple it as you suggest, the number of dissenters is still in the extreme minority. The way the paragraph was written means that more employees stated their support of Brenden Eich (even if they disagreed with Prop8) than those who protested against his appointment.
Last edited by KnightExemplar on Fri Apr 11, 2014 1:37 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby leady » Fri Apr 11, 2014 1:37 pm UTC

I don't think we are disagreeing, it just works both ways

Your president example is a good one - the odds of all, hell even most of them being real believers is zero - but invariably they keep it to themselves, which isn't healthy for democracy (well actually in the US maybe it is..). Now being against gay marriage is in the bad box too.

It seems to me that we should be making the bad box really small and obviously justifiably wrong, not adding more dodgy ones

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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby Diadem » Fri Apr 11, 2014 1:43 pm UTC

So how small should the bad box be? What if he was openly sexist? Or an advocate for the reintroduction of slavery? What if he advocated the annihilation of Israel? Or if he was a convicted murderer or pedophile?

How small is your 'bad box', and what are the criteria for something being in it or not?
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Re: Brendan Eich steps down as Mozilla CEO

Postby leady » Fri Apr 11, 2014 1:46 pm UTC

I would suggest that all of those are obviously in the bad box, bar maybe "sexist" because that too is horribly badly defined and thrown out to silence rather than inform


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