Firebird Database Project Admin Ann Harrison Interviewed
Monday April 21st, 2003
It's been a long and intense week since mozilla.org announced that the Phoenix browser has been renamed Firebird, to the dismay of much of the Firebird database community. In this interview with MozillaZine, Ann Harrison, an administrator of the Firebird database project and a partner in IBPhoenix, gives her thoughts on the dispute.
Monday April 21st, 2003 1:06 PM
While Ann seems to be rational and all around nice, I think she's wrong saying it was "Well, deliberately, yes. Malicious, no". True, Asa was informed of firbirds "The database" existence <a href="http://www.mozillazine.org/forums/viewtopic.php?p=12290#12290">before</a>, but I don't think it even passed by his head to think it would matter. It is a DATABASE, This is a Browser!
[quote] If Mozilla wants to use "Mozilla Firebird" — that may be acceptable in a legal sense. [/quote] Hmmm.. that is the case isn't it? Atleast acording to <a href="http://www.mozillazine.org/talkback.html?article=3095&message=27#27">bzbarskey</a>.
Monday April 21st, 2003 1:08 PM
Damn links; Asa's knowledge of Firbird; http://www.mozillazine.org/href="http://www.mozillazine.org/forums/viewtopic.php?p=12290#12290
bzbarsky's comment on the name: http://www.mozillazine.org/talkback.html?article=3095&message=27#27
#93 Scoping a New Name
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 7:15 AM
It looks like the Mozilla folks need a name to patch up the unfortunate Firebird fiasco.
Here's one: "Scope"
It ties back to the Navigator heritage, since navigators traditionally used telescopes, AKA "spyglass". If that's not techie enough, call it Mozillascope. That should do it. BTW, since birds seem to be in favor, and the project is "lightweight", it may be interesting to note that a Scops Owl is a family of small owls that max out at around 10" (20cm) in length. Scops is from the ancient Greek for "owl". Go figure. An owl could even be the mascot. With two huge front facing eyes, there's no bird that conveys "scoping" better than an owl. Scop is also an Old English word for a poet or bard. Bird, bard, scope, scop, you get the drift. There's no poetic license required to make the switch. Just Do It!
#4 Re: What?
Monday April 21st, 2003 2:09 PM
Asa was also informed at the time that there WOULD be a problem! We were still browsing databases back then.
#35 The Link is broken?
Monday April 21st, 2003 9:58 PM
The above mentioned link was working 2 hours ago and it is broken now.
#40 Re: The Link is broken?
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 1:11 AM
Both links quioted above have an incorrect wrapper around them.
#86 Re: What?
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 11:18 PM
Iguess Ann's response is valid. It is an open source world, but taking over a name, I guess is not a right thing. Also if the firebird project feels that the name should not be used, I see no harm in Moz trying to look for a new name, instead of trying to hold on to firebird
#87 Re: What?
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 11:22 PM
Monday April 21st, 2003 1:39 PM
Very nicely worded, and she's funny (about the moose balls thing).
I'd like to see Asa's response; it wouldn't hurt to hear from AOL Legal, either.
I personally do not want to change the name. I'll be behind whatever mozilla.org does, but that's my opinion.
#15 Re: Hmmm
Monday April 21st, 2003 3:54 PM
Good to see you're mellowing a bit from last week. :)
I still think changing the name would be in everyone's best interests. Mozilla.org would reclaim the moral high road, and it would avoid an unnecessary fight within the OSS community.
#116 Re: Hmmm
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 4:34 PM
<<I personally do not want to change the name. I'll be behind whatever mozilla.org does, but that's my opinion. >>
If Mozilla jumped into the mouth of a volcano would you be behind them? Here's hoping ...
#118 Go suck a toad
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 5:00 PM
Of course I meant whatever mozilla.org does regarding this situation.
As for your comment that you hope I kill myself, go to Hell.
#5 Irrational Firebird Advocates
Monday April 21st, 2003 2:23 PM
"I've had a look at the forum on MozillaZine — not thorough — and found the Firebird (database) advocates to be no less rational than the Mozilla advocates."
Excuse me, Ann, you're looking in the wrong forums. Look here: http://www.mozillazine.org/forums/viewforum.php?f=26
How long is this silliness going to go on? There's only one group of people causing damage, confusion, and acting irrationally as far as I can tell. If the Firebird database people don't want two open source projects with similar names, they're free to change the name to something else. A name with "base" or "db" or "SQL" in it will prevent future confusion.
#6 Re: Irrational Firebird Advocates
Monday April 21st, 2003 2:42 PM
"Excuse me, Ann, you're looking in the wrong forums. Look here: (LINK) "
OK three or four people are being silly - Ann apologised for that, and I am quite happy to apologise as well.
I posted my eMail address so that people who are anoyed with me could mail me and tell me so. I've had one reply so far and that was curtious.
I am informed that Firebird is simply a codename and will be dropped as soon as it is integrated into the Mozilla project, and I can live with that, as long as mozillazine drops the impression that it is a stand alone product. If this is not the case, then the information I am being given is incorrect, but it has come from mozilla.org, so I tend to believe it. I still object to Asa's atitude that he did not know and does not thing there is a problem. He was well aware of the problem last November/December, and just choses to have selective memory.
#7 Dumb messages
Monday April 21st, 2003 2:44 PM
OK, I'll grant you that "me" and "me4" are less than sterling examples of people trying to win the hearts and minds of others. I'm not at all sure, though, that they are part of our camp. If you check for the words "whining" and "grow up", you'll find another bunch of dumb messages. Seems likely to me that there are a few trolls around who are damaging everyone's image of everyone else.
As for changing the name of Firebird to FirebirDB or FirebirdSQL - why should we change? We've been using the name for three years. One of our users recently decided to install the Firebird (database) V1.5 release candidate. He typed "firebird 1.5 installer" into google. Here's what he got: "The top result leads to the forum where the discussion about possible conflicts is still in progress. Obviously this isn't what I am looking for. Out of other top results I was offered a link with the following description: ---------start quote--------------------------------------- Firebird Help: Firebird FAQ ... 1.5 How do I install Firebird? Strictly speaking, you don't install Firebird. ... Future versions of Firebird will probably have a real installer. ... texturizer.net/firebird/faq.html - 29k - Cached - Similar pages ---------end quote--------------------------------------- The above leads to an FAQ page for a web browser but contains no hints as to whether the information contained therein is in regards to the database or to the web browser. Please notice that the word "Mozilla" does not appear in the search result description."
#8 Re: Dumb messages
Monday April 21st, 2003 3:10 PM
Now it seems that you're trying to mislead people... I ran that same query in Google, and yes 2 out of the top 10 results relate to Mozilla, but the other 8 are all related to Firebird the database. You imply that looking for firebird database in Google has become impossible due to Mozilla Firebird, which really isn't the case.
I'm all in favor of sticking with Navigator/Mail, but if you're gonna argue this case, it doesn't help your cause to bend the truth like that.
#17 Re: Re: Dumb messages
Monday April 21st, 2003 3:57 PM
I didn't say that one couldn't find installation help for Firebird 1.5, just that a request for that information turned up something totally unrelated with no indication that the match was for Mozilla Firebird an not Firebird the database. Second, I did try to demonstrate is that the general useage is Firebird for the browser, not Mozilla Firebifrd. Third, this is an example of confusion - not major confusion, but it's early days yet.
#34 Not true.
Monday April 21st, 2003 9:53 PM
First off, if Mozilla Firbird already show's better results in google and other such directory's/search engines, after just a few days, then that is very bad PR by the DB group.
Secondly, Firbird will and will always be Mozilla Firbird, true many in THESE FORUMS will refer to Mozilla Bird as plain "Firebird" (as I have just done), why? This is a MOZILLA related site, no confusion!
If, firbird does it promoted as only "Firebird" outside of the Mozilla community, then mabey there will be a slight problem, and it can be corrected. But I don't see this happening.
Firebird (the database) i personally think went too Ambigous, just calling it "Firbird" they should have forseen problems like this 3 years ago, I'm amazed it has just started a flame. Calling it FirbirdDB would have been the best thing, but it didn't happen that way. But they should make room for Mozilla Firbird, and have us all rest in peace.
#36 Re: Why start name-confusing between os-projects ?
Monday April 21st, 2003 10:10 PM
Google tells the truth. 'Very few people' had used 'Firebird' for almost 3 years ago. The problem is some people had already acknowledged as early as Nov/Dec 2002 for the possibility of confusion, and get consulation with the legals(AOL) advice against another Open Source project to justify to use the same name.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 5:56 PM
Live and let live. The DB people should update their META tags and deal.
#18 Re: Dumb messages
Monday April 21st, 2003 4:02 PM
Actually, renaming to FirebirdSQL wouldn't be a horribly bad thing to do. I'm definitely on your side in this "fight", but there will always be Firebirds out there. Searching for Firebird is likely to always be somewhat unpredictable.
Monday April 21st, 2003 3:16 PM
I'm a loyal mozilla fan BUT I'm 100% with Firebird SQL. Mozilla need to change the name ASAP.
#10 Re: BRAVO
Monday April 21st, 2003 3:23 PM
Yeah, just change the damned name to Firegator (like Navigator and keeps a lizard reference) and be done with it. Or just Navigator. Gee, now that makes sense, doesn't it?
#14 "Need" is a strong term
Monday April 21st, 2003 3:35 PM
mozilla.org (of which I am not officially a part, btw) does not "need" to change anything. If they do, they do.
Monday April 21st, 2003 4:12 PM
I have the impression that this project took a little the large head with swollen ankles! Problems to put the shoes?
The same in french : j'ai l'impression que ce projet a pris un peu la grosse tete avec des chevilles enflées! Des problèmes pour enfiler les chaussures ?
#26 Re: "Need" is a strong term
Monday April 21st, 2003 6:40 PM
#24 I couldn't agree more!
Monday April 21st, 2003 6:10 PM
I've been a Mozilla advocate for a few years, but this has got to be the worst decision in a long, long time (yeah, even worse than the new 1.3 splash screen...)
Please pick a different name! how hard can that be?!?
#37 "how hard can that be"?
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 12:00 AM
have you followed the year long saga of names and name conflicts at mozilla.org? its *hard*
#41 Re: "how hard can that be"?
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 1:12 AM
Well, it will be a lot harder after they release a milestone branded as "Firebird".
I also find it hard to believe that the vast enterprises of AOL/TimeWarner don't have serveral usable trademarks under their belt that could be devoted to this project.
#45 Re: Re: "how hard can that be"?
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 2:54 AM
> I also find it hard to believe that the vast enterprises of AOL/TimeWarner don't have serveral usable trademarks > under their belt that could be devoted to this project.
You're assuming AOL/TimeWarner is interested in devoting resources to this project.
Not sure that's a good assumption.
#69 Re: Re: Re: "how hard can that be"?
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 3:34 PM
It sounds like they've devoted legal resources.
#83 Re: Re: Re: Re: "how hard can that be"?
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 9:22 PM
They _had_ devoted legal resources. I see no guarantees that they will continue to do so.
#50 Re: Re: how hard can that be?
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 6:08 AM
"I also find it hard to believe that the vast enterprises of AOL/TimeWarner don't have serveral usable trademarks under their belt that could be devoted to this project."
But AOL/TimeWarner/Netscape don't want to release their valuable trademarks to the public domain (which is what allowing them to be freely used by a project licensed under the MPL/GPL would amount to) witness the whole green mozilla/red mozilla debacle that held up redesigning the startup page and icons etc for years.
#11 IDEA: make Phoenix database a Mozilla Project
Monday April 21st, 2003 3:29 PM
Here's my idea. The Firebird database project has lots of good code and little money. The Mozilla Project has lots of good code, and lots of money (backing of AOL). What the Mozilla Project lacks, however, is a relational database manager. In fact, several people in the project have already been talking about the need to create an RDBMS for Mozilla. This will be necessary down the road.
Why not offer the Phoenix database project a position as the officially sanctioned database of the Mozilla Project? They're already using a Mozilla-like license. This would be a strategic move for Mozilla in our long-term goal of being extremely competitive in the Internet space.
As for the Firebird name, this way it could be worked out easily. One option would be that both the database and browser continue to be called Firebird. The name recognition would help both products. If that doesn't work, there are other options.
Am I a genius or what?
Monday April 21st, 2003 3:33 PM
Problem is, one would still need to be renamed because mozilla.org needs to have separate names for each component.
#43 Re: IDEA: make Phoenix database a Mozilla Project
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 1:26 AM
All software expands until it executes SQL?
#59 All software expands until it executes SQL?
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 9:51 AM
No, all software expands until it becomes an operating system. Parsing SQL is only a waystation on the road.
#13 IDEA: make Phoenix database a Mozilla Project
Monday April 21st, 2003 3:34 PM
Am I a genius or what?
#16 Firebird is a stupid name...
Monday April 21st, 2003 3:57 PM
Why do people insist on coming up with meaningless, flashy code names for products instead of descriptive names? It was the same with company names, eg/ Bell Atlantic -> Verizon I cant even remember now which Moz components do what. Remind me, firebird and minotaur - I know one is a browser and one is a mail client - but which is which?
Cant we just call them MozMail and MozWeb? At least 'Internet Explorer' and 'Outlook' gives an indication of the tools' purpose.
#23 Re: Firebird is a stupid name...
Monday April 21st, 2003 5:57 PM
"Remind me, firebird and minotaur - I know one is a browser and one is a mail client - but which is which? "
You got the order right, except minotaur was renamed to thunderbird. Firebird = browser Thunderbird = Mail & News
Monday April 21st, 2003 8:38 PM
Erm ... how *exactly* do you translate 'Outlook' as meaning 'an e-mail client'?
I could see how you get from 'Outlook' to a PIM ... but the e-mail bit? Sorry, I just can't make the link.
Word association is created through common use (eg. 'xerox' = to photocopy/a photocopier), so from that perspective Firebird has just as good a chance as any other 'random' branding mark.
#92 Re: Firebird is a stupid name...
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 6:02 AM
djg said : >Remind me, firebird and minotaur - I know one is a browser and one is a mail client - but which is which? <
minotaur : half mail, half newsgroups. thunderbird : you can flame trollers.
#20 I still haven't changed my ming
Monday April 21st, 2003 4:15 PM
Mozilla should NOT have taken ForeBird as a name.
#47 Good, I thought your ming really suited you
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 4:37 AM
1) Trademark law is a horrific abomination anyway (I've been hurt by it personally) and frankly, on those grounds, screw 'em. Nobody is going to confuse a database and a Web browser. Of course, trademark law is traditionally used by large companies to screw small ones but that still wouldn't make it a good thing even if a small organisation tries to use it for such a baseless case... They aren't going to sue, though. Good.
So, ethically, morally, as well as legally, WHO THE HELL CARES IF AN OBSCURE DATABASE HAS SAME NAME AS AN UNRELATED BROWSER, call it firebird if you like, it doesn't hurt the database one bit (they've already got more publicity from this than they had in the entire 3 years of their previous existence).
(I did like the gag about calling it Oracle. Actually, Oracle's a much better name IMO, but probably not for the browser, and there the evil forces of humungous corporation abuse of trademark law would certainly come into play. :)
2) Firebird is a shitty name
So even though I think Mozilla can use the Firebird name if they like with no qualms, I kind of hope they come up with something better. There are plenty of other mythical creatures. For example, 'Medusa' (the many snakes in her hair represent BROWSER EXTENSIONS, see? They're powerful and don't require much feeding!)...
#21 1 mozilla/phoenix/_x_bird user
Monday April 21st, 2003 4:37 PM
I use Phoenix (as it's still branded) and Thunderbird exclusively for my browsing and mail needs. I use Komodo for development. I love Mozilla and most software made with its parts. I've never touched Firebird, the database. I use MySQL and PostgreSQL for my development projects. But after reading this interview my undecided, apathetic, "I just want a damn name" position has been changed. I support Firebird (the database) 100%. This is solidified by searching for "firebird" on google. Try it, you'll pull up http://firebird.sourceforge.net as your first hit. If the name change sticks, then there will be 200 Mozilla related sites crosslinking each other listed before a position they've worked hard to get. Hell we could probably come up with another word for a flaming bird or some other related mythical animal. No need to flame anyone. Let's just get this settled and move on.
#62 True, Firebird has 1st position on Google, Yahoo
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 10:33 AM
You are right, Firebird (the database) has first position on major search engines like Google http://www.google.com/ , Yahoo http://www.yahoo.com/ , AlltheWeb http://www.alltheweb.com/ ... So, it's possible that they will insist long time about Mozilla not taking their name. It's a database, not a browser, but I agree when people say that it wouldn't be nice behavior if for instance any database changed its name to "Mozilla".
Perhaps this could be solved with a new voting, for example by Mozilla drivers and the people who have fixed bugs. Just a possible idea. And of course any person could propose ideas for names.
I don't know, I'm just a Mozilla tester, but in the case that another vote will be made later, a possible idea is to follow the line of the major browsers "Netscape Navigator", "Internet Explorer"... with something like "Mozilla Pioneer" or similar. In my searchs, I cannot find a Pioneer browser or any Pioneer open source program (if I'm not wrong, naturally). So, this is a possibility, among many others.
The current name is "Mozilla Navigator" (see the Mozilla's Window menu, and documentation). It can be good for the current browser, or also "Mozilla Browser", its popular name in fact, in order to differentiate from Netscape. Phoenix could be "Mozilla Pioneer" or any other suitable name, in the case that the "Mozilla Firebird" name would create too much unnecessary trouble and distraction from the real work, coding.
It's a pity anyway, I also like the Firebird name, but it's only another name. Just a point of view, similar to others, I admit. :-)
#77 Google: 1st as Firebird 4th as relational database
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 5:27 PM
An additional detail. I've just found that the Firebird database appears in fourth position on Google when searching for a "relational database". The results are: 1 MySQL, 2 Oracle, 3 PostgreSQL, 4 Firebird.
Like many people, I've heard much more of MySQL and Oracle as relational databases, of course, but -clearly- Firebird is a well-known open source project.
And, as said before, with the direct search "Firebird", the database has first position in Google and other major search engines.
#82 My results when entering "firebird" into Google
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 8:44 PM
Here are the results from the first page of a Google serach. None include MozFirebired. This really doesn't prove much. What will a search on year into the future produce? There is a potient for a confusion, especially when doing a web search. Will the more popular firebird gain the best ranking by a search engine? If a newbe wants to try out Firebird and reaches the database project will they continue until they find MozFirebird or simply think they have the name mispelled or wrong and give up?
Category: Recreation > Autos > Makes and Models > Pontiac > Firebird
Firebird - Relational Database for the New Millennium IBPhoenix Inc Provides Developer Information and Support Services for InterBase and Firebird. ... Firebird Project Development News. ... Description: Official Developer Site with the complete sources. Category: Computers > Software > Databases > Firebird firebird.sourceforge.net/ - 22k - Cached - Similar pages
Untitled Document Description: Located in Chandler this 1.6 mile asphalt road course with 14 turns features Amateur Road Races, Testing... Category: Sports > Motorsports > ... > Tracks > United States > Arizona www.firebirdraceway.com/ - 1k - Cached - Similar pages
PONTIAC | FIREBIRD Bold, beautiful, passionate, rebellious. Few cars have defined our lives and times like the great Pontiac Firebird. ... Inspired by Firebird? ... www.pontiac.com/firebird/index.jsp?source=spanish - 36k - Cached - Similar pages
General Information Home Who Are We? Contact Us What is Firebird ... Latest Firebird and InterBase® Related News and Information. Firebird Conference 2003 Fulda, Germany, May 19-20. ... Firebird Database or Browser? ... Description: Informations, Downloads and Tools for FireBird. Category: Computers > Software > Databases > Firebird www.ibphoenix.com/ - 14k - Cached - Similar pages
Firebird Raceway Firebird Raceway located in Boise Idaho is a NHRA Drag Racing facility with a full season of racing and home of the ISCA Boise Roadster Show. ... Firebird Wearables. ... Description: This NHRA sanctioned dragstrip is located in Boise Idaho. Schedule, photo album, points, class details,... Category: Sports > Motorsports > Auto Racing > Drag Racing > Tracks www.firebirdonline.com/ - 34k - Cached - Similar pages
SourceForge.net: Project Info - Firebird ... Firebird is a relational database offering many ANSI SQL-92 features that runs on Linux, Windows, and a variety of Unix platforms. ... firebird, 1.0.2-Release ... sourceforge.net/projects/firebird - 37k - Cached - Similar pages
Firebird Arts & Music Virtual Catalog homepage. Welcome to the Firebird Arts & Music Virtual Catalog! New Items! ... firstname.lastname@example.org. For phone orders call our office MF 9:00am-5:00pm 1 - (800) 752-0494. ... Description: Filk and folk publishers. On-line catalog last updated July 1998. Category: Shopping > Entertainment > Recordings > Music > Specialty > Filk www.firebirdarts.com/ - 17k - Cached - Similar pages
Welcome to Firebird Books Firebird is a new imprint of Penguin Putnam Inc, specializing in fantasy and science fiction for teenagers and adults. www.firebirdbooks.com/ - 1k - Cached - Similar pages
Firebird Web Design - Homepage Homepage Portfolio Procedure Prices Services Contact Us Sean O'Dowd Firebird Webdesign, The Crescent, Boyle, Co. ... 353 (0) 71 9662998 email@example.com. ... www.firebird.net/ - 17k - Cached - Similar pages
Firebird Gems Description: An Australian Gems supplier with a catalogue showing pictures of the genuine article that can be purchase... Category: Regional > Oceania > ... > O > Orange > Business and Economy www.firebirdgems.com/ - 1k - Cached - Similar pages
Monday April 21st, 2003 5:01 PM
This is a bit of a stretch for a connection, however, it works. What about naming Phoenix "Stravinsky"? or even "Igor"? (The connection is that Igor Stravinsky composed a ballet called "L'Oiseau De Feu," french for "The Firebird.")
Hope this gets sorted out somehow or another, even if this isn't the solution.
#71 Mercurio is a better name in a two way swapping
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 4:11 PM
Maybe they should do a name swapping. Phoenix becomes Thunderbird, Thunderbird (Minotaur) becomes Mercurio. ... Mercurio is Spanish for Mercury, the Roman God who was Zeus messenger (Mercury is Hermes, in Greek mythology) ...after all Chimera was renamed to Camino (Spanish for way, route, dirt road) .. (Mercury is already taken by Pegasus Mail) .. just kidding
In a serious note, the database people should call their product FirebirdSQL and problem solved, but of course they want to milk as much free publicity as they can
#25 well-spoken - my vote is for a mozilla name change
Monday April 21st, 2003 6:14 PM
Ann seems to be calm, well-spoken and reasonable on this issue.
I'm an avid mozilla user, not a firebird db user at all, but I'd vote to change the mozilla name. Firebird db seems to be more in the right here and all this is going to achieve is to make the mozilla project and team come across as the bad guys.
Frankly, firebird isn't that great a name for mozilla's browser anyway. Too bad we still can't use Phoenix, which was better. There has got to be something better that doesn't step on someone else's project. It's not like we're too far down the road on this new name. It was only announced a week ago.
Anyway, that's my vote.
#54 Re: well-spoken - my vote is for a mozilla name ch
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 7:40 AM
What's worrying me is that the mozilla developers have chosen not to come to this IMHO very obvious conclusion for about a week now. From the moment I first heard about this conflict (on this site actually) my first thought was: ok so they're going to change the name again. Who cares, the name sucked anyway.
Please people, grow up: the name was taken, so take another name (and something more imaginative this time, please).
#27 Mistakes happen.
Monday April 21st, 2003 7:38 PM
I think both sides need to back down the rhetoric a bit. Okay, more than a bit. There's obviously been a breach of goodwill and good-natured behavior here, and posturing just isn't helping matters.
The bottom line is that there was a mix-up somewhere in the higher echelons of one or both organizations. Okay, accept it. Next step: what do you do? Complaining about the other guy doesn't solve the problem.
Both sides need to cool down. What's happened is a public relations slip, but not much more. "A rose, by any other name...", as the great bard once said. Let's take our time on this one, admit to each other that there was a failure to communicate, and go from there.
#28 Would like to see Mozilla.org try again
Monday April 21st, 2003 8:08 PM
Granted it is very unlikely, but I agree that Mozilla.org should go back to their list of potential names and find another. It just isn't a very nice thing to do to another open source project. I love the browser regardless of the name and will continue to recommend it to everyone who will listen. I would like to be able to tell people that Mozilla.org admitted it made a mistake when they chose a new name and that they were a good enough citizen of the open source community to find a new one.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 1:17 AM
Mozilla comes out looking gracious if they yield to a smaller organization who's in the right. C'mon moz-- it's the right thing to do.
#30 What about cross-promotion?
Monday April 21st, 2003 8:46 PM
Nah, don't buy out Firebird. They've worked hard for their position, and I don't think we should try to take that away fro them.
However, a simple acknowledgement by Mozilla on a prominent page would go a long way to mending the rift.
Something like: "Hey! If you're looking for the [Firebird Relational DB], head to their site [here]!" at the top of the Firebird download page.
For a project with as high a profile as Mozilla, that would translate into a lot of hits and free publicity. And if Firebird does well as a database, Mozilla gets promotion running the other way as well.
At any rate, I can't see how it would hurt.
Monday April 21st, 2003 9:32 PM
I agree that if the Firebird name for the browser is kept a "if you're looking for Firebird RDB, they're [here]" would be nice.
I see no reason the mozilla community should back down on the name; we're fully within our rights and Firebird is a very generic name. I think that the interview includes a good deal of bull- she claims that the law is clearly on Firebird RDB's side, which it isn't, as well as that the ethical issue is clearly in Firebird RDB's favor, which it isn't. She obviously hadn't looked at the real forums and had underestimated the amount of abuse of the article response spaces. Her comparison of car theft is outrageous. The situation is a lot more like a fussy woman getting extremely angry and frustrated because somebody at a social function she went to was wearing the same kind of dress she was. In addition, I think the practice of signing up for Mozillazine accounts just to flame people or even to argue the Firebird DB side of the debate is terrible. An overload of accounts owned by people who have no real interest in Mozilla except to tear it down can do MozillaZine no good (not that we didn't have some people who fit that description before the Firebird debate, *cough*pbreit*cough*). Overloads of such accounts counter many of the benefits MZ received from banning anonymous posting.
#65 Re: Bah.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 11:14 AM
Law - If you are relying on the description of trademark law described by Asa based on the legal opinion donated to Mozilla.org, I suggest you do some independent research. Our research show the law, international, US, and state common law to be on our side.
Ethics - well ethics are in the eye of the beholder, I guess. The car example I used was a rhetorical trope called "hyperbole", intended to be an outrageous exaggeration.
Free speech - MozillaZine isn't a private club. As long as posts about the name change stay in forums appropriate to the name change, I don't see the objection to allowing contrary views. That appears to be the position of the MozillaZine.
#75 Re: Bah.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 5:14 PM
As to the legal issue: I'm not a lawyer, nor am I interested in digging through legal documents to find precedents, but it seems to me that the Firebird mark is fairly generic, was already in use by a BBS project as well as a ton of businesses not directly involved in software, was not really more available for adoption by you than it is for adoption by Mozilla now, and that Mozilla's use of the mark is unlikely to cause any confusion with your use of the mark.
Here is a bit from Bitlaw.com, for those of us who are fairly new to this:
"In a nutshell, a plaintiff in a trademark case has the burden of proving that the defendant's use of a mark has created a likelihood-of-confusion about the origin of the defendant's goods or services. To do this, the plaintiff should first show that it has developed a protectable trademark right in a trademark. The plaintiff then must show that the defendant is using a confusingly similar mark in such a way that it creates a likelihood of confusion, mistake and/or deception with the consuming public. The confusion created can be that the defendant's products are the same as that of the plaintiff, or that the defendant is somehow associated, affiliated, connected, approved, authorized or sponsored by plaintiff."
And the 5 things all courts consider in a 'likelihood of confusion' ruling, again from bitlaw:
1. the similarity in the overall impression created by the two marks (including the marks' look, phonetic similarities, and underlying meanings); 2. the similarities of the goods and services involved (including an examination of the marketing channels for the goods); 3. the strength of the plaintiff's mark; 4. any evidence of actual confusion by consumers; 5. the intent of the defendant in adopting its mark.
FirebirdSQL has an argument on #1. Mozilla has an obvious advantage on #3-5. #2 is debatable; I would say that FBSQL and FBBrowser are definitely different enough to avoid confusion despite the "marketing channels" similarity.
Your condescending remark about rhetoric is obviously not helpful in any way. Furthermore, instead of making distinctions and issues clearer by exaggerating, your car example obscured distinctions.
MozillaZine IS a private club, in any way relevant to the right to free speech. Nobody at MZ is obligated to give 'free speech' on their forums to FirebirdSQL users. This isn't public land, nobody needs to allow you to stage demonstrations here. (BTW, FirebirdSQL users' crapflooding was not by any means limited to "forums appropriate to the name change" - many of the threads at http://www.mozillazine.org/forums/viewforum.php?f=26 , for example, were in forums decidedly inappropriate to discussion of the Phoenix-Firebird name change.)
Anonymous posting was disabled to improve the signal to noise ratio at MozillaZine a long time ago, and until recently, that strategy worked. Anyone with a MozillaZine account retains that account, of course, by the good graces of the MZ staff alone; while they've generally been permissive about registering accounts to people who are neither Mozilla developers nor Mozilla users interested in the development process, a mass-registration of such users can only be detrimental to the purpose of the site in the long run.
Monday April 21st, 2003 9:48 PM
I'm someone who supports the Mozilla side all the way in this debate as I have never used or heard of the database project. However, many people have spoken out that the firebird name should not be used by Mozilla. If this is reason enough for the Mozilla project to adopt a different name, and if they do this, I really won't care too much.
The reason I'm posting this is that I have issue with a new idea that's floating around this board, namely that Mozilla should consider "advertising" for the database project. I see no reason why Mozilla should do this, especially if Mozilla were to drop the firebird name. First, Firebird DB should not get free advertisement only because its contributors are upset about a name issue. Second, Giving Firebird DB extra recognition on mozilla.org or mozillazine.org sets a precedent for other kinds of advertisement and junk to be added to these sites, which are provided as Mozilla resources. Thirdly, if (the big if to many people) Mozilla does drop the firebird name, that in itself would be a big enough appeasement. I'm not sure about the logistics of copyright, but Mozilla must have spent pretty good money to get the firebird name. If Mozilla decides to pursue a new name (a noble gesture, which in my opinion would further establish Mozilla as the role-model for open source projects), the project will have lost some money, which is "punishment" enough for its "infringement" on the database.
Monday April 21st, 2003 9:52 PM
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 12:06 AM
If we wanted to cause more trouble, we could call the Firebird browser "Monkey". I'm sure there is some abandoned sf project that never got past planning that called itself monkey. Maybe we could link to it. "If you are looking for the BonziBuddy clone Monkey, please go to..."
#39 We all know Phoenix/Firebird sucks...
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 12:25 AM
So what about the name Suckbird?
#55 Re: We all know Phoenix/Firebird sucks...
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 8:07 AM
thanks for the troll/flamebait... try to act like an adult, eh?
#121 Hmm. Go away, troll n/t
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 5:19 PM
#44 The POLL tells it all
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 2:43 AM
At this moment 14574 people has voted how they think about the new "Mozilla Firebird" name. Only 16% likes or loves it (and don't say the poll isn't accurate). I think this is enough to let "Mozilla" go back to the drawboard and consider another name (it's just an project-name they're saying, so no problem here). I've already read much nicer names in these threads.
#48 14574? Oh damn, this is sooo stupid!!!
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 4:47 AM
The poll before this one was about the new Mozilla roadmap and therefore you can be sure it raised all attention it could - and still it only had less than 2000 votes when this new vote came up. So you can consider '2000' the number of voters from the Mozilla community and 12500 from the outside. Yes, you could also fake votes if you want. Those 2000 votes are less than 16%, so one could even argue that ALL of the Mozilla community likes or loves the new name. I don't do so, but you come and say that the new name is obviously not accepted... ridiculous!
I have seen the poll result before the database community was aware of it. And at that time the majority of votes was in favor of the new name. It was not overwhelming, but a clear majority.
So please shut up claiming things about what this poll says.
The only thing the poll really says is that it's seriously spammed. Your nonsense statement about the poll being accurate... I won't comment on it. You like me to prove that it isn't? Just tell me which poll entry I should vote for and I'll be able to do 30 votes in a short while.
BUT: this all does not mean that I'm all for this new name: I voted for "neutral" because ...well... as you say: there are nicer names. I'm not even opposed to changing the name. But I'm opposed to reading your nonsense.
#49 Re: 14574? Oh damn, this is sooo stupid!!!
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 5:25 AM
Sorry, seems you missed the point. Arno did'nt want to say "Mozilla people re-thinked their opinion", just "wide public opinion is". I'll not make guesses how much of votes came from Firebird community (I think many), how much from Mozilla one and how much from off-site observers. I think this poll was started by Alex Bishop mainly to give us (Firebird people) opportunity to attract attention to the problem by more civilized way than we initially tried. Many thanks to him. You said: "Just tell me which poll entry I should vote for and I'll be able to do 30 votes in a short while." I assure you, when I placed link to this poll on Russian Firebird community forum, I and others reasonable persons intentionally warned young and hot members to don't betray of rendered to us confidence. If there were some idiots, I don't think many ones. BTW, regardless of future final of this story, I'm glad we are starting to hear each other, not just loudly speak :)
WBR, Alexander V.Nevsky, Firebird Foundation member.
#67 Bah, poll shmoll
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 12:53 PM
If y'all want to start talking numbers, how about the overwhelming majority of people not commenting either way? It's just like with war protesters. Sure, a few thousand protest here, maybe even a million there. There are 6 BILLION people on this planet, which means that over 5.95 billion AREN'T protesting. Same goes for Mozilla. If I had numbers on the user base, community, and developer size of Mozilla, which I do not, that number would DWARF the paltry number of actual community members that are against the name.
#63 Re: The POLL tells it all
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 10:37 AM
>> and don't say the poll isn't accurate <<
Why not? Because that _would_ be accurate?
#46 Neither good for Mozilla or Firebird -- change
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 3:22 AM
I'm a Phoenix user who hasn't voiced my opinion in this matter yet -- but Mozilla deliberately using another open source projects name is very bad! (Another successful open source project is even worse.)
Apparently Asa has asked AOL Legal if the new name was ok. BUT NOT the Firebird(-the-database) team. If I was on that team, I would naturally feel very offended. Especially since Mozilla is such a heavyweight project. That's not to play nice.
This will create a load of problems not only for Google searches but for distributions as well. Do you want your software to be installed as "rpm -i firebird-the-webbrowser.rpm" (or "apt-get install firebirdwebbrowser.deb")? That would be stupid! Enough already with these name clashes.
Most of the name space is still available -- just choose ANYTHING else. How about calling it 'Firezilla' to be close in name both to Firebird-the-browser (if you actually thought that was a good name) and Mozilla.
#66 Re: Neither good for Mozilla or Firebird -- change
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 11:20 AM
Actually, the salamander is called fire lizard ...
#90 Salamander web browser
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 12:58 AM
#51 Thoughts that don't involve *anybody* renaming.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 6:24 AM
1. If the texturizer.net resource is going to remain one of the primary reference sites for Mozilla Firebird information, it ought to change its phrasing to refer to it as Mozilla Firebird *consistantly*, and not just in certain spots. Mozilla's own page, for that matter, probably ought to be more consistant. Casual reference is one thing, but official and semiofficial sites should at least be making sure that things like page titles are clear on just what product they're referencing.
2. People really need to stop calling for Mozilla Firebird to get renamed. It's not happening. Similarly, advocates of the current name need to stop treating people who don't like it as if they're second-class citizens and/or complete idiots, because they aren't. Have some basic decency. Legal or not, people get possessive of names. Login names, nicknames, names of their favorite software. Kindness and understanding get a lot further in life than denigration.
3. The people who *picked* the name need to remember that while they may be the ones who make the decisions, the users are the ones who determine whether a project is a success or not. Not, again, that it 'must be changed immediately!' or anything like that--but when a lot of people express dissatisfaction, even unrelated to the Firebird database, that ought to at least provoke thought. (Personally, I think the trend towards cars is just stupid. That's my opinion. I'm entitled to it.)
4. The people who *didn't* pick the name need to remember that the people who did are not exactly Evil Overlords bent on world domination. Nor are they subject to our every whim. They have work to do.
5. The people who develop Firebird-the-database need to take a deep breath and relax. If they produced a web browser, or for that matter produced any kind of software designed mostly for general consumers, it might be a real concern, but the sort of person looking for a database to use is *not* generally going to be the sort of person easily confused by naming conflicts. They know they want a database, not a web browser, and should be able to figure out relatively quickly that Mozilla Firebird is not what they're looking for. If Mozilla Firebird's going to be targetted at the general public, there probably ought to be more concern about *them* losing users to confusion.
And all of that really just boils down into 'calm down and be considerate of others'. None of this is the end of the world. This does prove, however, why naming of products is generally left to people with major marketing savvy--it's a complicated thing!
#56 Re: well said.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 8:10 AM
#72 Re: Re: well said.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 4:26 PM
>1. If the texturizer.net resource is going to remain one of the primary reference sites for Mozilla Firebird >information, it ought to change its phrasing to refer to it as Mozilla Firebird *consistantly*, [...] Casual >reference is one thing, but official and semiofficial sites should at least be making sure that things like >page titles are clear on just what product they're referencing. right, but in the end firebird will stand for the browser and not the database, that was first and is actually (google) associated with firebird
>2. People really need to stop calling for Mozilla Firebird to get renamed. this name was a mistake, it should be corrected
>Similarly, advocates of the current name need to stop treating people who don't like it as if they're second->class citizens and/or complete idiots, because they aren't. it's not about liking.
>Legal or not, people get possessive of names. I don't understand what you mean. Firebird had the name for 3 years.
>4. The people who *didn't* pick the name need to remember that the people who did are not exactly Evil >Overlords bent on world domination. Nor are they subject to our every whim. They have work to do. But first they must settle the affair with the db firebird people. And if they don't get an agreement, it's their duty to drop the name they just took without asking.
>5. The people who develop Firebird-the-database need to take a deep breath and relax. >If they produced a web browser, or for that matter produced any kind of software designed mostly for >general consumers, it might be a real concern, but the sort of person looking for a database to use is >*not* generally going to be the sort of person easily confused by naming conflicts. They know they want a it's both software, both opensource. too close in my opinion.
>And all of that really just boils down into 'calm down and be considerate of others'. None of this is the end of the world. if it would be that easy mozilla could calm down also and just choose another name (and ask first after some googling).
>This does prove, however, why naming of products is generally left to people with major marketing savvy->-it's a complicated thing! true
#81 Some responses.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 8:33 PM
1. For most people, Firebird still stands for a *car*. What it ends up meaning in popular thought isn't really relevant. A good database program is *not* going to suffer undue hardship because it shares a name with a web browser. Do you really think that the average person administrating such a system can't tell the difference, or makes decisions *purely* based on name recognition? Whether the logic is really sound or not, there's usually other input there, and while it might provoke a, "Oh! That's got the same name as my web browser," it's not going to provoke anybody to drop one.
2. You think the name was a mistake. A mistake is something like typing 'tyop' instead of 'typo'. A mistake is having your painter do your living room in olive when what you really wanted was ecru. The name was chosen. The ramifications were considered. Regardless of whether or not I or anybody else actually likes it, it's not a mistake.
3. I've had my RL name for 21 years. Do I have a right to get upset if my neighbor changes her name to be the same as mine? Sort of. Does she have to change it? No. Unless there's a trademark violation, there's no responsibility for either party to use anything else.
4. Again, they don't have to settle anything; there is nothing to settle but hurt feelings, and the world doesn't generally consider those worth much time and effort, whether that's right or not. Names cannot be 'taken'. Firebird Relational Database is still Firebird Relational Database. See the above--if my neighbor renames herself to my name, she's not *taking* my name from me, and she's got no duty to do anything of the sort. Neither does Mozilla.
5. 'Open Source Software'. Now, *there's* a narrow category. Imagine if this weren't software but actual objects. I make up a card game and distribute it for free and call it 'Widget'. Somebody else makes up a special tool for working on cars, distributes it for free, and calls it a 'Widget', too. Does one have the right to tell the other not to do that? Of course not. The fact that these products are built out of lines of code instead of metal or paper does not change things in that regard. A relational database is not a web browser. A web browser is not a relational database. The fact that they are both software and both open source is no closer a similarity than the two Widgets both being objects and free.
6. Once again, Mozilla's under no obligation to choose a different name. They could have named it one of the ones of the 'worst suggestions' poll and guess what? No obligation to get a different one. They certainly aren't the ones getting particularly upset about sharing the name, so I don't think saying they should 'calm down' is really applicable.
And therein lies the rub, as they say. Mozilla Firebird does not break any laws. Nobody has any legal obligation to do anything until they are sued over it and *lose*, which it sounds like isn't going to happen. That means that those who don't like the name need to stop claiming that there's any 'obligation' on anybody's part. There is no 'obligation', there is no 'need', there is no 'duty'. There are choices to be made, just as there are always choices to be made, and some of those choices will mean consequences. But one of the funny things about free will is that we're still able to choose.
#96 Thank you
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 8:58 AM
You're right; mozilla.org doesn't have a "need" or "duty" whether moral or legal. The fact that Asa has stopped posting on the matter speaks volumes about mozilla.org's resolve. It seems at this point that people are barking up a tree at the top of which the cat is sleeping peacefully.
#57 Please Talk
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 8:46 AM
Except that the people who work with Firebird and write browsers that access Firebird told Asa and the other Pheonix developers that there WAS a problem last year. We had thought that the name was removed from the list for consideration then. Had we known differently, we could have take the matter further THEN.
The sort of people who are USING Firebird are the same people who are using MOZILLA. They have no knowledge of how the data gets to the browser, they just have an Icon or program on the screen some of which are already called Firebird. Firebird is also reliant on client software which is installed on the client machine - currently in a Firebird directory.
If we MUST live with sharing the name, then there must be agreement and cross checking that Mozilla installations are not going to affect existing Firebird Clients, and visa versa. Just say 'Live with it' is even less of an option as I am sure if a Mozilla install on a corporate Firebird user site messes things up there will be even more problems. It will probably never happen, but will somebody at least talk about it. Please.
#111 Re: Thoughts that don't involve *anybody* renaming
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 12:22 PM
"1. If the texturizer.net resource is going to remain one of the primary reference sites for Mozilla Firebird information, it ought to change its phrasing to refer to it as Mozilla Firebird *consistantly*, and not just in certain spots. Mozilla's own page, for that matter, probably ought to be more consistant. Casual reference is one thing, but official and semiofficial sites should at least be making sure that things like page titles are clear on just what product they're referencing."
Rest assure that Firebird Help will address this once the final decision has been made about what to call the browser. For now, it's either Mozilla Firebird or Firebird Browser.
#52 About namezillas and namebirds.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 7:10 AM
I coincide in saying that a trademark must in someway promote some feature or the entire nature of a product. Mozilla? Thunderbird? Firebird? Phoenix?
Though I understand it is hard to get an available trademark that at the same time may have a meaning or mtransmit an idea of a browser. Mozilla has earned that value on its own. By now, Mozilla means browsing for majority (at least for anyone with a minimum connection with IT), so if a new name is required (which I also disagree) it should have confortably and happily used the Mozilla name in some combination.
As for my personal preferences, keep the Mozilla name alone for the browser and add suffixes for each component: Composer: something like Rule, Pen, Inspire or anything indicating design Mail: Bag, Box, Notes, Station, Deliver, Post, or whatever chatzilla/jabberzilla: IRC, Pals, InTouch, League, Room, Society, or whatever
and so on. And I would avoid suffixing everything with -zilla (Penzilla, Roomzilla, Notezilla, Boxzilla, etc.).
As for the Firebird DB conflict. Picture this: You're happily at the beach, enjoying sun and sea, and then a moron comes to sit just next to you, there is plenty of room but the stupid guy sits by your side.. yes, he has the legal right, but he is still a jerk. Even worse, the guy may have already be sitted somewhere else and just because being a stupid jerk, moves to sit just by your side. That's Mozilla. It was happily enjoying a goog name, but had to make a move and take some other's, legally but also jerkilly.
I love Mozilla just like everyone and for that, I don't want it to be subject of bad comments because of a bad attitude, because of a ridiculous nosense like a name and not even a good one.
Please admins, before this becomes personal, just give up the name. We have lots to do with new roadmap. I propose this:
- release the name Firebird and Thunderbird - assign a temporary name to phoenix to avoid more name issues, I suggest a develoment codename like Chaos (in honor to all this situation), with a final release name of just Mozilla. After all, a new roadmp is not reason for a new name, just like when dropping the netscape source code didn't require a new name. This new roadmap is not as different as that. - rename thunderbird back to Minotaur, also as a development codename - check if using Mozilla + whatever can be trademarked (I guess so, since Microsoft Windows exists) - if it is, start a survey through Mozillazine to chose the prefered name. - trademark the winners and kill whoever bothers again in he future about names.
And in the future for codenames use only names in the public domain like Everest, Mont Blanc, Osiris, Thor, and so on, you get it.
Peace and love.
#53 About namezillas and namebirds.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 7:31 AM
Peace and love.
#61 Re: About namezillas and namebirds.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 10:31 AM
"Even worse, the guy may have already be sitted somewhere else and just because being a stupid jerk, moves to sit just by your side. That's Mozilla. It was happily enjoying a goog name, but had to make a move and take some other's, legally but also jerkilly." Meanwhile, that's nothing like mozilla since it was FORCED - LEGALLY - to change it's name. As it stands it was NOT 'sitting somewhere else.'
"And in the future for codenames use only names in the public domain like Everest, Mont Blanc, Osiris, Thor, and so on, you get it."
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 9:31 AM
At the risk of further annoying people, in the small chance that there will be a name change, perhaps we could rename Pheonix as 'LightHawk' (and then maybe could call Minotaur 'BlackHawk'). I also like the names FireFox, SkyHawk, WhiteHawk, and Raven. Just a thought.
#60 No name threads
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 10:09 AM
Please post no threads suggesting new names. There has not been a call for new names for Mozilla Firebird and unless something changes in the future, there will never be. There is no purpose to post a names thread other then wasting your own time. *IF* a new name search was ever started again, then all of you who want new names can jump around and be happy. Until then, please stop posting these useless threads.
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 5:14 PM
I see hordes of ridiculous name suggestions here, and mozilla.org hasn't even indicated it wants or needs to change the name. I mean, someone actually suggested "Stravinsky." What a JOKE.
#64 Stop acting like children
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 11:14 AM
I have two small children. When the younger one is using the computer, the older one will just come in, push him off the chair and take over the computer. The little one can't do anything about it, so he just hits him in the back or the side, then runs away. There is always lots of yelling and whining. I send them both to time out.
Mozilla Firebird, you didn't even ask. You just took it. So, you go to timeout. Firebird Project, you puched your open source brother. We don't hit. So, you go to timeout. Both of you stay there until you apologize ... and no more whining.
If you were my kids, the little one would get the name. He had it first.
#76 Re: Stop acting like children
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 5:26 PM
Rather strange analogy there...
Suppose both of your children have a new toy. The little one thinks of a nice nickname for his toy. The bigger one comes up with the same name for his. Then they bicker.
Nothing was taken and nothing was lost, but who would you punish?
#80 Re: Why start name-confusing between os-projects ?
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 7:51 PM
Yes, the problem is how to let both kids know what were happening. And the quarrel should be stopped ASAP. It is a responsibilty of the parent to teach a child how to behave.
#137 analogy doesn't fit reality
Thursday April 24th, 2003 6:05 PM
what's happening here is not just naming of toys, but significant software projects that are classed in one categorized BY LAW. They both have more than a few developers and others working on the projects. So to be accurate, if the younger kid had already start promoting his or her toy in the nieghborhood, and the bigger kid comes out with a same-named toy, I say punish the older kid, and restore some fairness into the world. It's time for mozilla.org folks to stop being jerks and bully others around just because you've got a bunch of AOL lawyers. Boo hoo.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 4:09 PM
at least you should have asked before quietly "stealing" the name.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 4:34 PM
Now more people than ever before know about the Firebird database.
#74 Sounds like MS
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 4:41 PM
I said it before and I will say it again. This whole thing sounds like something Microsoft would do.
#78 Uh, no
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 5:47 PM
Microsoft would buy the company that had the name, like they did when they realized Internet Explorer was a name already taken.
#89 Re: Uh, no
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 12:04 AM
mhhh... in germany microsoft paid the company who owned the name "Explorer"
#134 Re: Uh, no
Thursday April 24th, 2003 2:15 AM
Uh, right. So you're saying that we stole the name so we couldn't be accused of buying it, yeah? Wow, NOW it starts to make sense! //ds
#99 Re: Sounds like MS
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 9:48 AM
I guess I don't understand what Kovu meant. If it's an offer from Mozilla to buy Firebird, well, lets talk. I doubt that he's saying that Microsoft is a better company to deal with than Mozilla.org, though personally I'd rather be bought than steamrolled.
#84 Let me see if I understood
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 9:22 PM
First we changed the name from Phoenix to Firebird because we were afraid of Phoenix Bios lawyers. Now we are telliing Firebird Database people to fuck themselves because they are a small opensource comunity with no money for lawyers. That's right ? Is this the OpenSource spirit ?
#85 very bad image to newbies
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 9:55 PM
No flame war please. There were already too many last weekend.
We just wish that both teams would have better communication and find a better solution soonest possible. Whatever reasons they would take, it was already very bad publicity and a real damage to both parties. What a newbie would think and be confused if two different and very active open source projects share same product name.
Tuesday April 22nd, 2003 11:34 PM
The hypocrisy and arrogance of Mozilla.org is blatant. Their only difference from Microsoft is their level of success. Mozilla.org should find another name. Maybe the organization should call itself MS-Zilla to represent its current practices.
#109 GOT TROLL?
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 12:11 PM
I certainly think so.
#91 That's just too bad...
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 3:32 AM
I've been an Interbase user for quite some time and when Firebird came out I was very happy. I've been a Netscape user ever since Netscape 2 back in '95, and then I switched to Mozilla and then used Phoenix because I need only the browser(for email I have my own app). But, after all this I would really think twice before installing the new "Firebird" on my machine, not because it wouldn't be good, but because it ain't fair not to care about the other open source projects over there, even if not big/fat and with a powerful backing(like AOL). For me fair has a very important meaning, and I would prefer spending 39$ on Opera(which is good enough for me, and really fast). It's sad to see two communities that should treat themselfs like brothers acting so fairless(like I'm the big brother and I don't care about what you have to say, I'll do what I want). SAD :(
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 9:08 AM
If you want to stop using Mozilla because of this matter, feel free. You'll be one of like ten people that actually care that much. And if you're willing to spend $40 on a Web browser, I think you need your head examined. I've always thought Opera was stupid to think they can charge so much for an application that, thanks to Microsoft, has no marketable value anymore. I'm honestly hoping Opera either becomes free or just goes under.
#104 Re: Bah
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 10:43 AM
Well, looks to me like I like Opera much more than others like it. I prefer it to Mozilla, except for the money. But I would rather buy it instead of using something produced by an organization that starts acting like m$(besides mozilla and co. crashes a bit more than Opera on my machine) Also, competition is always good(and Opera 7 is competitive and the fastest browser arround). BTW, go tell all the people that buy Opera to check their heads, will ya?
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 5:19 PM
I don't care that much. If people want to blow their money on a Web browser, they deserve to be soaked.
#94 Oh fer the lova gawd
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 7:55 AM
They had the name first. Let 'em keep it. I've been a Mozilla user since 0.95, I usually recommend it to my friends, but I'd stop over this.
If you want a name for the new thing, why not Mozooky (think back to this http://www.bcdb.com/bcdb/detailed.cgi?film=11148&p=s and this http://www.geocities.com/titanoman/Godzooky.html)
#97 Attention K-mart shoppers...
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 9:06 AM
Folks, I'm thinking from Asa's recent silence on this "debate" that mozilla.org has said its piece and moved on. Regardless of anyone's opinions on the matter, it seems (and I could be wrong; I'm not part of mozilla.org) that it's just a done deal. Like I said in another post, it seems that people are barking up a tree at the top of which the cat is sleeping peacefully.
#100 Re: Attention K-mart shoppers...
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 9:52 AM
OK, then I guess it's time get a ladder or call the fire department.
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 9:52 AM
Mozilla is great bunch of applications. I don't know the Firebird database. But as it seems they use the name Firebird for some years now, so IMO they have all rights to insist on their Trademark. As Mozilla Firebird is just a few days old the Mozilla Team should reconsider the use of Firebird as a name. All the flamers should take a hold, make a deep breath and come back to respectful behavior.
I'm not affiliated with either side of this arguing. But as Open Source users and supporters we should respect each other and when someone has used a name as Trademark, it must be respected.
My 0.02 ?
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 10:30 AM
Perhaps the name of the browser should be changed to something more net related. Hummm...how about searching the web...yeah...ok, we are searching, searching for.... answers, asking questions, yeah yeah, that's it! We are searching for answers to our questions and our browser is our....Oracle!!! Yes, let's rename the browser Oracle! Anyone see any problem with this?
#107 Oh! What a Lovely War...
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 12:03 PM
> [...] Oracle!!! Yes, let's rename the browser Oracle! Anyone see any problem with this? > ;-)
Excellent idea. Mozilla is in trouble -by accident- with Firebird, one of the main open source databases [the 3rd one, according to the Open Directory http://dmoz.org/Computers/Software/Databases/Open_Source/ and the Google Directory: Databases -> Open Source http://directory.google.com/Top/Computers/Software/Databases/Open_Source/ ]. But better let's do the things in the big way, and go deliberately for a nice war on Oracle, the #1 corporate database. ;-)
Thanks for the moment of good humor, Zardoz. All this conflict is being too serious...
#108 Oh! What a Lovely War...
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 12:04 PM
> [...] Oracle!!! Yes, let's rename the browser Oracle! Anyone see any problem with this? > ;-)
Thanks for the moment of good humor, Zardoz. All this conflict is being too serious...
#110 Oops... sorry for the duplicate
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 12:14 PM
Well, I'm not sure how this duplicate posting has happened (maybe when saving a form result as html page). My apologies.
#113 Which of your posts is the real one?
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 1:34 PM
You have admitted that both of your posts have the same name, "Fireb..." er "Oh! What a Lovely War", but which one is the real posting, and which is the imposter?
#117 Two Firebird cars colliding... Just an accident...
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 4:38 PM
I'm sorry, Zardoz, that dup was like two Firerbird cars colliding, only another unintentional accident.
The other accident is more serious, specially when they are two pretty big Firebird cards. Naturally, after a crash, the drivers are often upset and even a bit offensive for a time, but they can find a reasonable solution later.
I don't know much about Firebird, but the Mozilla drivers have been nice people always in Bugzilla and so on, just hard workers. (I don't know them personally, only their posts, etc.). I don't think they will die for unimportant things like any particular name, Firebird or Fireball or anything.
So, in my opinion, they will do what they will think is the correct thing to do, in one way or the other, based on facts and reasoning, and comunication with the Firebird team, like they did in the Phoenix case.
Therefore, please relax, don't be too serious for a moment, and just imagine -with a bit of sense of humor- any current meeting in the Mozilla galaxy:
- Hi, people. How are going Mozilla 1.3.1 and 1.4 beta?
- Fine, but people is still talking about that Firebird problem...
- Yes, there is an obscure database that has first position on Google as Firebird, third position as open source database, developer presence in about 25 US states and other 25 countries or so, a next international conference in May... Their users just had a nasty flame-spam war on some of the Mozilla drivers, and Asa is still trying to recover from it.
- That's too bad... Well, we can use the current name, Mozilla Navigator.
- Deprecated. Navigator is Netscape's, another obscure company. Perhaps you know them, they started the open source Mozilla, and expanded the WWW. Besides, we need a new name for Phoenix, at least until 1.5.
- And the popular name, Mozilla Browser?
- Who knows, maybe Opera Browser will sue us. We can expect anything now.
- OK, what about Mozilla Pioneer? There is not a Pioneer browser, or any known open source community, and it recalls Navigator nicely.
- I'm sorry, there is another obscure multinational corporation, Pioneer Electronics. God alone knows, they could be confused with a browser.
- Oh, what a pity... I also liked Mozilla Pioneer. Let's see, something in the same line... Hmm... I got it! Let's call it Mozilla Explorer!
- Sigh... Life is hard...
#123 Re: Two Firebird cars colliding... Just an accident...
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 5:48 PM
It would be very nice to believe that the Mozilla Drivers will do the right thing based on the facts and reasoning and communicating with the Firdbird people.
In fact, however, they have stonewalled the discussion. They made no attempt to contact Firebird before the name change was announced, and have made no attempt to talk since.
Their consistent attitude is "we've made the decision. Deal with it." In the meantime, they have started using the "tm" in conjunction with Firebird.
This is an attitude we would expect from AOL or Microsoft. It is not an attitude we expect from a democratically run open source project.
#125 Link to drivers' recent position
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 6:39 PM
Mr. Starkey, evidently I cannot read the drivers' mind, so you may look directly at some Asa's posts about their recent position: http://www.mozillazine.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=9133&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=284
I'm not sure if they are right or wrong, it's a complex matter, but I believe they are sincere. Asa explained for example (Thu 17th Apr 2003 9:52pm) why the things were different when talking with Phoenix Technologies about the other name conflict (without mailbombing, etc., in that case).
Let's hope Firebird and Mozilla will be able to communicate peacefully when the things calm down, and to find any reasonable solution.
#132 Not a complex matter at all
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 8:57 PM
I will just reiterate my statement. The Mozilla drivers made no attempt to communicate with Firebird either before or after the announcement.
Asa's argument is without legal merit. This can be resolved in an honorable, decent manner or it can be resolved in the courts.
The matter isn't complex. If any party had the right to arbitrarily restrict the scope of an existing mark the entire system of trade and service marks would collapse.
I submit that AOL's ephemeral lawyers know this and Asa does or should know this as well. What we are witnessing is not a legal position but a pure, simple act of a bully.
Asa's statement have no basis in trademark law. And I accept his unwillingness to defend his position as recognition of that position.
#135 Do you need a trademark attorney?
Thursday April 24th, 2003 7:35 AM
Well now J., I may be able to recommend a trademark attorney who may work for a minimal price, if you are interested. This has gone on far enough.
#103 A Perspective from a Sideliner
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 10:37 AM
I am not a member of the Firebird project, but I am the original founder, architect, and implementer of Interbase, the precursor to Firebird. I am also Ann Harrison’s husband. These are my opinions and may not reflect the view of the Firebird project, the Firebird Foundation, IBPhoenix, Inc., or my wife.
Trademark law is based on common law, state and federal statutes, and international treaty. The latter defines a set of 45 classes that determine scope of trade and service marks. Firebird, Mozilla, disk drives, and probably the power supply all fall under Class 9 (Electrical and scientific apparatus). A mark has the scope of its class, unless explicitly restricted as part of its registered mark. An unregistered mark, like Firebird, has the full scope of its class. I don’t know what sophistry AOL’s legal department used when deciding that a mark used on a browser doesn’t conflict with one used on a database product. Both are clearly under Class 9. The same logic suggests that anyone can market a golf cart under the name “Mercedes Benz” because no dufus could confuse a golf cart with an automobile. (One may note that AOL’s legal advice has proven problematic to more than one AOL corporate officer.)
Firebird has developer presence in at least half the states and a like number of countries, so call it 50 jurisdictions. Any of them would be in a position to seek legal protection for a valid mark. In most jurisdictions the court would note that Firebird (database) had been using the mark for three years, Firebird (browser) is in the same trademark class, and is therefore infringing on a valid mark. This is sometimes called a slam dunk.
If Microsoft were infringing Firebird’s trademark, would I advise the Firebird organization to protect their rights in court? Absolutely, without hesitation. If AOL were infringing Firebird’s mark, would I advise the Firebird organization to protect their rights in count? Absolutely, without hesitation. If AOL’s open source proxy/agent were infringing Firebird’s mark, would I advise the Firebird organization to protect their rights in court? Yes, but only after trying to persuade Mozilla.org otherwise.
Although AOL’s legal department apparently made the call, is AOL on the hook? Unless AOL uses the mark, no. Is Mozilla.org on the hook? Probably moot, as Mozilla.org doesn’t have a commercial presence in most of the 50 jurisdictions. Are the Linux commercial distributions at risk? If they ship any material containing an infringing mark in any of the Firebird jurisdictions, they are most definitely at risk of a cease and desist order halting their business in that jurisdiction as well as money damages.
The real victims will be the Red Hat and SuSE and other Linux distributions. They will have to chose between dropping the Mozilla browser, facing legal actions in 50 jurisdictions that they mostly lose, or altering the browser distribution to remove all instances of the offending mark from the product and documentation. Will AOL be willing to indemnify the commercial Linux distributions? Is Mozilla.org able to indemnify them? If the goal of Mozilla.org to reach the widest possible distribution of its browser, does it really make sense to alienate high volume distributors?
Nobody wants a legal brawl from which there would be no winners except the lawyers. But Mozilla should not expect Firebird to accept encroachment on a legitimate, valid mark based on reports of an opinion by AOL’s unseen and unheard legal department.
#106 Yes! someone who understands brand equity
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 11:17 AM
Wake up Asa! Like I said before, why is Mozilla destroying its brand recognition? Bury "Mozilla - Firebird" it was a stupid idea. The 100 posts before this show that Firebird the DB has gained brand recognition and Mozilla is gaining an negative impact.
#114 Re: A Perspective from a Sideliner
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 3:37 PM
back in the 50s, was an electric guitar model designed by Fender : the Broadcaster. Soon, the name had to be changed because there was a drum model named BroadKaster, made by Gretsch. I guess this *is* a normal issue, because it involves two products of a same category (music instruments), eventhough the spelling was different.
Today's issue with "Mozilla Firebird" / "Firebird" is different. Of course, both products are computer applications, but still competing in different areas.
I'm not sure whether the legalese talk is relevant. What I've read so far on mzine's forums is a lot of people ignorant of the issues in the name battle, a lot of people being stubborn, a lot of people forgetting where it all started, just trying to argue and find stupid examples, none of which being relevant than the one they're replying to (including myself). At last, I found people understanding each other, and people bitter. I guess this is the most important part of the battle. What now ?
IMHO it's not to me (or anyone) to dig in the discussion, everything has been said in every possible way (maybe some used some D.I.3 :-( ).
(the Broadcaster was renamed Telecaster BTW).
#130 Mozilla Firebird is not Firebird?
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 8:00 PM
Sorry for my poor English.
Do you mean that 'Mozilla Firebird' is not 'Firebird'. So the users of Mozilla Firebird should not be the same group of Firebird users. And from now on, the web site of Mozilla, software offered for downloading, the forum etc, should use the terms 'Mozilla Firebird', and should not shorten as 'Firebird' because there ARE two groups of users of different products.
#115 Re: A Perspective from a Sideliner
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 3:38 PM
(the Broadcaster was renamed Telecaster BTW).
#105 why don't you change browser's name to PHOENZILLA?
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 10:52 AM
I think Phoenzilla is cool :)
#112 Re: why don't you change browser's name to PHOENZI
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 12:57 PM
Because some people decide the 'FIREBIRD' is the only choice, and insist that it is of no necessary. Their personal ego is covering their eyes.
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 5:31 PM
Phoenzilla is AWFUL.
#133 What does a lightweight browser say about itself?
Thursday April 24th, 2003 1:47 AM
Hey, every time I load up that M$%#@^%%$ browser I get the screamin' ab-dabs waiting for it to plod through a mire of stuff I never use. Just like the zzzzzzzzzilla it is. Wish it was more ... nimble.
NIMBLE. Like it?
#124 Mozilla's Making a Mistake
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 6:06 PM
#126 Mozilla's Making a Mistake
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 7:24 PM
#127 Mozilla's Making a Mistake
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 7:32 PM
#128 Mozilla's Making a Mistake
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 7:33 PM
#129 Mozilla's Making a Mistake
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 7:35 PM
#131 'Phoenix renamed to Mozilla Firebird'
Wednesday April 23rd, 2003 8:20 PM
I refer to the link: http://www.mozilla.org/projects/phoenix/ (Last modified April 23, 2003 )
"News Phoenix renamed to Mozilla Firebird
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 Mozilla Firebird. The product strings are currently being updated."
As a supporter of mozilla, we do need to help to stop the flame war among the open source projects, and to promote the new name, and to ensure that any newbie would understand that 'Mozilla Firebird' is not the same 'Firebird' as from FirebirdSQL or ibphoenix
#136 Re: 'Phoenix renamed to Mozilla Firebird'
Thursday April 24th, 2003 7:50 AM
If a database project were to name their database Mozilla, don't you think there might be some confusion? It has to do with clear separation of projects. If a company makes Firebird cars, and another makes Firebird software, there will be no confusion. If two companies make Firebird software, regardless of whether one is a database and one is a browser, there will be confusion. Just as Adobe has multiple software products (Adobe Acrobat, Adobe Photoshop, etc.) so to multiple Firebird products, Browser, Database, widget, will seem to come from the same company/group, since it is recognized that trademarks within the same genre do not overlap. This issue will most likely go to court unless Mozilla changes the browser name. Frankly, I suspect that the "months of discussion and further months of legal investigation" line is, to put it nicely, wildly inaccurate and more likely involved a bunch of emails over that period, hardly constant discussion. I am sure it will all come out during discovery.
#138 Re: 'Phoenix renamed to Mozilla Firebird'
Thursday April 24th, 2003 6:34 PM
"As a supporter of mozilla, we do need to help to stop the flame war among the open source projects, and to promote the new name," - erickleung
Well, I don't know about you, but I'm not one to blindly follow lockstep with decisions I don't agree with. I may be a supporter of the product, but I'm still allowed to holler when I think we're driving toward a big cliff...
#139 i Support the Mozilla suit. I Oppose Firebird name
Sunday April 27th, 2003 9:59 AM
Hi. I'm a long time fan of Mozilla/phoenix, and the developer of a currently pretty popular extension for both of the browsers. i also work on other OSS projects.
imho, since there's a strong objection from the Firebird(DB) side, we should not pick the Firebird name for any project related to mozilla, whether it's just a codename or a product name. If there wasn't such objection, then we would have been fine. but there is one. regardless of legality of the move (which might indeed be leagal), it totaly contradicts OSS philosophy. we're here to help each other, share knowledge, and make the world a better place. the OSS movement had already caused a major shift in the way people think, and made many of them aware to the principles that drive OSS development.
now is the time for the mozilla team to say "we're sorry you were hurt by our decisions. let's find a solution together". and if there's still objection to using the firebird name in mozilla apps, then just drop it and select a new name. no damage done.
just my 2c avih