Phoenix and Minotaur to be renamed Firebird and Thunderbird

Monday April 14th, 2003

Asa Dotzler writes: "After months of discussion and further months of legal investigation, we're finally comfortable moving forward with new names. The new name for the Phoenix browser is 'Firebird'. The documentation and product strings will be updated soon. In addition to securing Firebird, we've also got the OK from those contributing legal resources to use the name 'Thunderbird' for a mail client. Hopefully this will be the end of naming legal issues for a while."

#58 Asa - I think this name choice is asinine!

by stephenc

Tuesday April 15th, 2003 10:21 AM

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Well, as has been pointed out Firebird is already in use by a well known open source project. Even more incredible is that the Phoenix browser project is so close to the Phoenix database project's process to choose the name Firebird. Since I have interests in Firebird (the database), I'll continue to see it as the real Firebird and this Firebird (the browser) as Mozilla.

When Phoenix and Minotaur where stand-alone and separate from the Mozilla suite, it made sense to pursue name changes that would eventually result in their unique "brand recognition".

Mozilla has already achieved "brand recognition". When it was announced that Phoenix was replacing the Mozilla browser in the roadmap starting with 1.4a (instead of continuing on its own path), Phoenix should have taken on the name Mozilla Browser and Minotaur should have become Mozilla Mail.

Delibrately destroying your "brand recognition" is an asinine marketing move and anyone who works in marketing will tell you that. Yipee! Five years to get to a decent release with name recognition in the media, now we get to start all over again. Stupid is the kindest thing I can say for this announcement.