MozillaZine

Reports on Phoenix/Minotaur Renaming Focus on Firebird Database Protest

Wednesday April 16th, 2003

InternetNews was one of the first sites to report on the renaming of Phoenix and Minotaur to Firebird and Thunderbird. Australian site LinuxWorld concentrated on the reaction from the Firebird database community, with claims that posts in "the Netscape-Mozilla newsgroup" (it's unclear exactly which newsgroup this refers to) are being censored. CNET News.com also focussed on the controversy, including a link to a page from FirebirdSQL Foundation sponsor IBPhoenix that encourages people to join the "fray" and add to the "heat in [the MozillaZine] forums". The call-to-arms also lists the email addresses of many of the more prominent Mozilla contributors and suggests deluging them with messages (even though many of the listed people had nothing to do with the name change).

Posts to the forums about the name change should be kept polite and constructive and added to the existing name change announcement topic.

Update! The Firebird Admins have posted a statement about Phoenix's renaming to Firebird on their front page. Stating that they "strongly oppose this change", the announcement follows the earlier IBPhoenix article in asking its readers to declare their objections by posting to Mozilla community forums and emailing various Mozilla developers.


#158 Re: Re: Hmm

by asa <asa@mozilla.org>

Thursday April 17th, 2003 12:46 PM

You are replying to this message

"But once again I come back to the point that Mozilla is a large and visible project, an open-source leviathan. Elephants must be careful where they step, or things get crushed :) "

I don't buy that. How is what Mozilla did in partially adopting a well used name for one of it's applications any differnt than that the RDBMS folks did to the pre-existing and probably much smaller open source BBS project? No one is "crushed". The BBS project isn't crushed. They appear to be doing just fine. There have been quite a few firebird software projects happily co-existing for years and one more app in the mix called Mozilla Firebird should not have been problematic.

"The fact that people (eg. Asa?) mention that a number of other open-source projects use this name only makes it worse! To me, it just means m.o knowingly stepped on the toes of 5 other projects instead of 1. Two wrongs don't make a right, and 6 Firebirds don't mean any of the last 5 were well-named... "

I'm not claiming that two wrongs make a right. I'm saying that there have been no wrongs here at all. Where has the harm been to any of these projects by the existence of any of the others? Was the BBS project irreparably harmed by the formation of the Firbird database project? Was the database stomped all over by the Firebird Maths educational software? Other than the time wasted in this disagreement (which surely could be better spent writing and shipping great software) I just don't see where any of the myriad of firebird projects have been harmed.

If people would stop talking in such overheated language and strart talking in specifics about the actual harm (rather than this amorphose "confusion" that didn't exist in a field of many firebird software projects but somehow materialized in a field of many+1), I think we'd quickly see that it's just not a problem or that if there are minor potential problems - like packaging name conflicts, that there are simple solutions to those problems.

--Asa