Don’t Hate on Mozilla for Selling Ads

This week’s news that Mozilla was going to start selling ads that will appear in the tiles of a new tab or page on Firefox had a lot of industry watchers wondering if the non-profit association intent on improving the world’s experience on the Web was finally selling out.

I don’t think so.  After all, it’s about survival.

Darren Herman is Mozilla’s new VP of content services, who was hired to launch this initiative.  During the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s annual meeting in Palm Desert, Calif., he explained:

Mozilla is moving from a dumb window to the internet to a smart agent on behalf of the user, putting the user first.

Mozilla is certainly moving into new territory.  The IAB issued a scathing reaction to Mozilla’s intent to block third-party cookies, discussing in detail the necessity of advertising revenue in order to sustain the Internet as we know it.

A few tweets I sent out this morning were picked up my Mozilla, and we are all friends now.





This news will perhaps fade quickly when the discussion moves to mobile, since it is unclear if the ads will appear — or even render properly — on the mobile version of Firefox.  From the Google Play store webpage, over 50 million installs of the Firefox browser for Android have taken place.

Mozilla is in a position to change the game in mobile advertising if it decides to insert ads into the mobile browsing experience.  I’ll be on the lookout for news on this.



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