back to article OkCupid falls out of love with 'anti-gay' Firefox, tells people to see other browsers

Dating website OkCupid has urged lonely hearts to stop using the Firefox browser following the controversial appointment of Brendan Eich as Mozilla's new CEO. Eich, a Mozilla co-founder and the creator of the JavaScript programming language, reportedly donated $1,000 to a campaign in support of Proposition 8, a 2008 California …

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  1. robmobz
    Devil

    Product != CEO

    Eich -->

    Am I the only one who distinguishes the product from the CEO. While I disagree with Eich's personal views that doesn't change the fact that Firefox is a good browser and so I will keep using it.

    1. Mark 85 Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Product != CEO

      Nicely trolled....

      I think that here in the States, one's personal beliefs are factor in using a product or service. If the management is forcing their beliefs on customers or taking a public stand on them, then yes, the customers have a right to go somewhere else. Chick-Fill-A and Hobby Lobby come to mind on this.

      The politics of political correctness seem take precedence over the quality of the goods and services offered. Some companies have a strict policy on management and employees not vocalizing anything "offensive".

      The bigger question is "where is the line drawn?" At what point would you not use Mozilla? If the CEO expressed hatred towards certain groups? Avowed that being a member of such a group should be punishable by death? Or would you turn a blind eye and say "So what? I'm not one of them.".

      Ok.. I'm trolling back.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Product != CEO

        The bigger question is "where is the line drawn?

        You had better boycott Boeing then. They make devices for killing innocent children.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Product != CEO

        Mark 85: there's not even a case for having to draw a line there, making death threats would be handled by the criminal justice system in most countries.

        1. Mark 85 Silver badge

          Re: Product != CEO

          I realize what you and Mahatma are saying. But for the sake of this discussion what if it were the other way.. that he had come out for LBGT rights and some match site decided to boycott him? Ten or twenty years ago, he would have been crucified for that. He did this 6 years ago according to the article and his public statements since then (again according to article) show he's changed his attitude.

          We all change. Some become asshats, others good guys. Did he change or just his public persona?

          It seems he's changed so, he and his company should be shunned for something he did 6 years ago when he wasn't the CEO????

          1. peabody3000

            Re: Product != CEO

            people boycott equality supporters all the time. its not some mythical scenario you just cooked up in your wild imagination. and there is no absolute arbiter of what is right and wrong, in case you hadnt noticed that there is no god or jeebus being quoted on CNN for our enlightenment. we pick our sides. we act accordingly, pressure is brought to bear, and change is manifested. sometimes that change is on the wrong side of history but today equality is a self-evident positive to a now unstoppable majority, though there is much progress yet to be made still and it wont be painless

          2. Squander Two

            Timing @ Mark 85

            > what if it were the other way.. that he had come out for LBGT rights ... Ten or twenty years ago, he would have been crucified for that.

            Precisely. The gay marriage debate (and most other aspects of gay rights activism) are absolute miracles of marketing. If you want to sell a viewpoint, hire some gay men. To change society's attitudes so completely and successfully in such a short time is an incredible feat.

            But, if you're going to change people's views that fast, you can't then fairly attack them for what their views were a few years ago. This isn't an example of a man who still believes some bigotted nonsense that most decent thinking people abandoned in the 1850s. He had a belief six years ago which was at the time completely mainstream.

            > he and his company should be shunned for something he did 6 years ago when he wasn't the CEO?

            The six-year timeframe is interesting. How long ago did Barack Obama oppose the legalisation of gay marriage? Was it six years or seven? Maybe even eight. I lose track. Is he going to face a negative campaign from OKCupid, or did his appallingly bigotted hateful opinion manage to fall just outside their cut-off?

      3. Michael Habel Silver badge

        Re: Product != CEO

        Or would you turn a blind eye and say "So what? I'm not one of them...

        Pretty much this.... Even if I were queer I still wouldn't give a damn. There's more valid reasons to be upset at Mozilla right now. Their choice in CEO notwithstanding....

      4. sisk

        Re: Product != CEO

        If the management is forcing their beliefs on customers or taking a public stand on them, then yes, the customers have a right to go somewhere else. Chick-Fill-A and Hobby Lobby come to mind on this.

        The difference is that where Chik-Fil-A and Hobby Lobby have made their founders' beliefs a matter of corporate policy Eich has kept a professional distance between Mozilla corporate policy and his personal belief. I resent this idea that because he agrees with traditional morality rather than the more contemporary moral view on homosexuality that he should be denied the position he has or that the company he leads should be boycotted when he keeps his personal views out of the company's operations. The man has his views and has a right to actively support them.

        As long as he doesn't change the corporate policy in support of them (which he hasn't) these people boycotting Mozilla for the CEO's personal views are, in my opinion, out of line. That's just as bad as if some fringe religious group decided to boycott a company because the CEO was gay. They have the right to do it of course, and I wouldn't stand in their way, but that doesn't change the fact that it's a dick move.

      5. icetrout

        Re: Product != CEO

        if it weren't for the perverts in media the -1% of the population practicing a queer-lifestyle would go unnoticed...

    2. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: Product != CEO

      Not just that. Every person is entitled to his views provided that they are not _FORCED_ on the other (and especially on his employees). Contributing to a political cause is part of the normal way the world functions. For example, I occasionally contribute to GreenPeace (especially when they do something right like that case when they dumped a dead whale on the lawn of the Japanese Embassy in Berlin). That does not suddenly make me into a rabid environmental terrorist.

      As long as he keeps his political views out of the dat to day operation of Mozilla there is nothing wrong with him doing what he has done. Same as there is nothing wrong to contributing to the opposing side.

      1. localzuk

        Re: Product != CEO

        "Not just that. Every person is entitled to his views provided that they are not _FORCED_ on the other (and especially on his employees). "

        So, OKCupid is entitled to their views and they're not *forcing* them on anyone, just asking people to change behaviour.

        1. JDX Gold badge

          Re: So, OKCupid is entitled to their views

          >>So, OKCupid is entitled to their views and they're not *forcing* them on anyone, just asking people to change behaviour.

          Not the same thing. He is personally against gay marriage. They are using their company product and brand to advertise their views. How would you feel if Firefox took a public "anti gay" stance?

          1. localzuk

            Re: So, OKCupid is entitled to their views

            @JDX - "Not the same thing. He is personally against gay marriage. They are using their company product and brand to advertise their views. How would you feel if Firefox took a public "anti gay" stance?"

            Sorry, so you're saying they can't use their own products and services to meet their own business aims? (To match people together, whatever their sexual orientation)

            How is it not the same thing? The bloke they're complaining about publicised an opinion that goes against their values, both personally and professionally. They publicised their own opinion and asked you to change your behaviour, or click the link at the bottom to continue as normal.

            If Firefox had a public opinion on something, I would accept that they're welcome to hold their views and it would help me decide which product to use. For example, I shop at more ethical shops - because the businesses engage in practices based on shared morals...

            Not to mention, some people seem to think that it is actually acceptable to hold the view that a section of our society should have less rights than another, based on arbitrary details set out in an old book. What if we go and swap anti-gay views for anti-black views? Or anti-women views? Suddenly, it is pretty darn bad to have those views. Why is it acceptable to some of you to hold anti-gay views? It certainly isn't to me.

            1. JDX Gold badge

              Re: So, OKCupid is entitled to their views

              No, you are totally missing the point. OKCupid are using their website to launch a campaign against a company, because someone who works there holds views they don't like.

              A comparable thing for FF to have done would be to show a popup "This site has been linked to homosexual activity. Mozilla does not condone homosexual acts and accepts no responsibility if you choose to continue viewing this site".

              Don't let your personal bias against other people's bias distort the facts. A company is not the CEO. He is allowed personal views. Arguably, one company attacking another company is grounds for a lawsuit, in the US at least.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Product != CEO

          No in my opinion OKCupid is forcing its view on people by interrupting their browsing to a web site.

          There really is a double standard here whereby sites like OKCupid are at liberty to do this, yet if I wrote a browser which detected people visiting gay or lesbian sites and popped up a notice saying "Hey why don't you give being straight a go tonight instead" then the outcry would ring around the media and world and I would be labelled homophobic, etc.

          Rights to free speech are equally applicable to the majority as the minority.

          I for one will not be giving up Firefox on account of this.

          1. stu 19

            Re: Product != CEO

            How about boycotting OKCupid for interfering with the browsing experience and attempting to inflict their personal/political views!!

            Not gay, nor do I really understand, the desperate need to be gay and married, is there some tax trick I'm missing as a married bloke?

            1. Hollerith 1

              Re: Product != CEO

              Desperate need to be gay and married:

              I am gay and I thought it would be nice to make a public, legal declaration of life-long union with my partner. We have been guests at weddings and each and every time we knew we wanted to do the same thing, and have public recognition -- and respect -- for our commitment, in the same way that straights get respect. There is a mental and cultural place that marriage takes up, a social value in it. People don't get married for tax breaks (this is always what straights accuse gays of wanting, although they never accuse themselves of this), they get married because they want to step into that social category of a permanent establishment, a legal, familial and (in many cases) spiritual union.

              I didn't know what marriage would mean to me until I was married. I found it to be an amazing, subtle, and life-affirming shift in myself, between us, and with us and the world.

              To be denied this on the say-so of others is tough, as every excluded group understands. To be excluded is not just not to have that nice thing, but to be denied a dignity and honour that enhances life and joy. To be denied is to be told: you must remain less human, less equal, less important that I. You cannot join in humanity's ancient and global cultural norms. And why? Because I find you icky.

              So, yeah, if I go to a place that makes it plain that they find me icky, I don't really want to go there again. Personally, I don't think FireFox is that place, but I would have every right to avoid it and ask my friends to avoid it, if I thought it was actively working against me.

              1. Lamont Cranston

                Re: Product != CEO

                @Hollerith 1

                I'd really like to upvote this more than once.

              2. Squander Two

                Re: Product != CEO

                > To be denied this on the say-so of others is tough, as every excluded group understands.

                Yes it is, but that doesn't make it wrong. I hate to break this to you, but, unless you are advocating for the legalisation of incest, brothers and sisters who fall in love with each other are being denied the right to marry on your say-so. Or maybe you do want incest legalised, in which case I'm sure there are some other groups of people you don't think should be allowed to marry. Forty-year-olds to eight-year-olds; one man to twenty women; humans to cats, perhaps. Whatever; you get the point.

                The laws and rules and norms of any society are entirely built on being allowed or not allowed to do things on the basis of other people's say-so. That's fundamentally what a society is. Some of those things are bad and some are good and some are controversial, but we can't discount any simply on the grounds that people are being disallowed from doing stuff on other people's say-so, because that's all of them.

                Personally, I think gay marriage should be legalised not because we should not discriminate against gay people but because we should discriminate for them. It's an important distinction, and means that I still have an argument left when the next group start demanding "marriage equality". Those of you who have insisted on couching the entire debate purely in terms of equality and discrimination and human rights have left yourself no non-hypocritical retort to NAMBLA or the polygamists or whoever demands marriage rights next. But I can say "Gay people deserve this change in the law to be made especially for them, and you don't."

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: Product != CEO

                  > unless you are advocating for the legalisation of incest

                  Incest is indeed legal in a number of countries.

                  I'm not bothered by your prejudices, that's your problem, but least you could bother to check your facts.

                  1. Squander Two

                    Re: Product != CEO

                    > Incest is indeed legal in a number of countries. ... you could bother to check your facts.

                    What on Earth are you on about? How does the fact that incest is legal in some jurisdictions (though not the one currently under discussion) have the remotest bearing on anything I said?

                    1. Anonymous Coward
                      Anonymous Coward

                      Re: Product != CEO

                      > What if we go and swap anti-gay views for anti-black views? Or anti-women views? Suddenly, it is pretty darn bad to have those views. Why is it acceptable to some of you to hold anti-gay views? It certainly isn't to me.

                      You don't have a choice about being black or being a woman.

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Product != CEO

              > Not gay, nor do I really understand

              Not to be rude, but self-confessed ignorance doesn't stop you from voicing an opinion on the matter, I see.

          2. NomNomNom

            Re: Product != CEO

            "There really is a double standard here whereby sites like OKCupid are at liberty to do this, yet if I wrote a browser which detected people visiting gay or lesbian sites and popped up a notice saying "Hey why don't you give being straight a go tonight instead" then the outcry would ring around the media and world and I would be labelled homophobic, etc."

            Imagine if some CEO said it was their opinion that people of different races should not be allowed to marry. And paid towards a campaign to prevent it.

            And in response some website decided to advertise a boycott of that CEO's product.

            Now really you would say that's a double standard?

            1. Squander Two

              Re: Product != CEO @ NomNomNom

              > Imagine if some CEO said it was their opinion that people of different races should not be allowed to marry. And paid towards a campaign to prevent it.

              No, not quite. How about:

              Imagine if some CEO had said in 1750 that it was their opinion that people of different races should not be allowed to marry. And paid towards a campaign to prevent it.

              The analogy doesn't hold up all that well because human lifespans, but still. What we're talking about here is a man who held what was at the time an unremarkable and mainstream opinion held by, among others, Barack Obama, who is only rarely accused of being a hateful right-wing bigot.

              1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

                Re: Product != CEO @ NomNomNom

                > Imagine if some CEO said it was their opinion that people of different races should not be allowed to marry. And paid towards a campaign to prevent it.

                Eric Raymond is a vocal pro-gun supporter. Suppose after the next school shooting Microsoft ran something similar on their website saying if you used an opensource browser or OS you were in favour of killing children.

                If the product is the CEO we should all give up linux to embrace Windows and enable BillG to fund more humanitarian causes

        3. Les Matthew

          Re: Product != CEO

          If you actually read the article you would know that they were in fact forcing their views on Firefox users.

      2. Someone Else Silver badge
        Coat

        @ Voland's right hand -- Re: Product != CEO

        Every person is entitled to his views provided that they are not _FORCED_ on the other (and especially on his employees).

        Where are Mozilla's offices again?

    3. Sander van der Wal
      Angel

      Re: Product != CEO

      Current thinking is that the CEO is one of the key factors in the success of a product. That's why they need to make large amounts of money.

      This is a side effect of that mode of thinking.

  2. Old Handle

    I would dump Firefox anyway, if only there were another browser that looked remotely tempting. But Firefox is definitely past its prime.

  3. Piro

    Changed my user agent string because of this

    Not exactly the best protest, but a protest.

    I still love Firefox even thought it is now a bloated mess with fewer useful features than ever. On version 25, though.

    1. Michael Habel Silver badge

      Re: Changed my user agent string because of this

      Not exactly the best protest, but a protest.

      I still love Firefox even thought it is now a bloated mess with fewer useful features than ever. On version 25, though.

      You might want to google something called "ESR" (Extended Service Release (IIRC)). Its based on Build 24, and unlike Build 25, you can still revert stuff *cough* Download Manager *cough* in this Version. I've been running it since January, and I'm as happy with it as I had been up till I crossed Paths with the spawn of Satan Build 25.

  4. NullReference Exception
    Trollface

    I notice that *no one* is calling for a boycott of JavaScript. Oh well, we can always dream...

    1. Piro

      Kind of

      I use NoScript on by default....

      1. big_D Silver badge

        Re: Kind of

        Yep, NoScript for the win.

        I also made a complete article tracking system for a studio using PHP HTML/CSS and I got away with 4 lines of JavaScript on a total of over 50 pages, even though it had drop down menus and was easy to use.

        1. sabroni Silver badge
          Happy

          Re: agreed

          I love a site that still moves and has menus that open even though no JS is running. You know whoever's behind it has a good understanding of web technology.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "I notice that *no one* is calling for a boycott of JavaScript."

      Indeed. And a quick check on okcupid.com shows they do use Javascript. Perhaps they should tell their visitors to disable Javascript before entering their site.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Rehabilitation

    I see the rehabilitation of McCarthyism is complete, and now everyone seems to be looking for who to accuse of "not being one of us". Long live the blacklist! Bring back HUAC!

    (So how did that weekend of looking for non-PC words/phrases at GitHub go? How many coup counted?)

    Oh really, do I have to explain why the AC? It's because I'm liberal and therefore a target.

    1. Eddy Ito

      Re: Rehabilitation

      Perhaps Eich wishes he was AC also and even though he's apparently a conservative he would agree that he too is a target.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Rehabilitation

      ...what?

    3. localzuk

      Re: Rehabilitation

      Its McCarthyism to have a view, inform others of that view, and ask them to change their behaviour?

      Pretty sure it almost matches what the bloke they don't like did too...

      1. cyborg
        Mushroom

        Re: Rehabilitation

        No, it's McCarthyism to see Reds under the beds everywhere and to prosecute thoughtcrimes.

        Last I checked having a political opinion was protected under the United States constitution; these Social Justice Warriors TM aren't interested in anything as mundane as facts or sensible debate though. Nope. Out come the torches and pitchforks and out go the brains. At this point I think he could actually get married to a man and it wouldn't stop this crusade.

        1. NomNomNom

          Re: Rehabilitation

          "Last I checked having a political opinion was protected under the United States constitution; these Social Justice Warriors TM aren't interested in anything as mundane as facts or sensible debate though."

          Opinions are protected. But people are also free to organize boycott's of a product for whatever reason. hardly a violation of the constitution!

          If a CEO declares a certain race is inferior to another race, expect to see the same thing - people organizing boycotts of that CEO's product..

          1. cyborg
            Boffin

            Re: Rehabilitation

            Yes, they can do what they like.

            The problem is the fundamental attitude of why: innuendo, not fact. That's the difference especially when the guy is not coming out thumping a Bible telling the queers to shut up but is instead trying to reconcile.

            You see people who really hold fast to a particular belief generally don't shut-up just because someone else told them it makes them feel bad because they wouldn't care. But it doesn't look like the people taking issue with this are interested in thinking - the decision has been made and the non-person is to be persecuted.

          2. Squander Two

            Re: Rehabilitation

            > If a CEO declares a certain race is inferior to another race

            This is not even analagous to what happened. Certainly, "Them gays aren't proper humans" is one argument against gay marriage, but it is far from the only one. Very obviously so, since Proposition 8 actually passed in California. Is anyone sane claiming that the majority of the electorate in California -- California! -- believe gay people to be sub-human?

            1. cortland

              Re: Rehabilitation

              Let he who is without sin stone the first swine; I'm tempted -- only tempted - to buy them a year's worth of delivered Chick-Fil-A chicken pie.

              "This meal has been provided by a Firefox user in thanks for your editorial stand. Enjoy."

              At least they're not being "unto the fourth generation" Dutch-reformed-West-Michigan-biblical.

        2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

          Re: Rehabilitation

          Last I checked having a political opinion was protected under the United States constitution

          Check again. The Constitution of the United States says nothing about having an opinion, which is not an arena subject to legal restriction in any case.

          The First Amendment does prohibit the Federal Government from imposing prior restraint on the freedoms of speech and of the press, among other things. That's rather different from "protect[ing]" some mythical right to "hav[e] a political opinion".

          Regardless, in this case absolutely no one's right to express an opinion, much less have one, is being curtailed - certainly not as a matter of prior restraint by the Federal Government. Various people have expressed opinions in various forms, and the US Federal Government has not said boo about that; so no constitutional protections are involved in any way.

          But of course people who wave their hands frantically in the direction of the Bill of Rights rarely can be bothered to read the damn thing, or think about what it actually says.

          1. cyborg
            Flame

            Re: Rehabilitation

            "The First Amendment does prohibit the Federal Government from imposing prior restraint on the freedoms of speech and of the press, among other things. That's rather different from "protect[ing]" some mythical right to "hav[e] a political opinion"."

            I don't really see how unless you want to be strangely pedantic and argue it's possible to have an opinion banned that you can nonetheless freely speak. Or even stranger argue that it's possible to freely speak as long as you don't hold that speech as your opinion. Clearly unless you're a lawyer prone to perverting language for no reason it's entirely sensible to read "speech" and "opinion" as basically synomous in that if you're allowed to speak something then unless thoughtcrime is to be prosecuted the opinion of the speaker as to that speech may be reasonable assumed from be what it is from the content of that speech; but even if it is not it's not relevant.

            Besides protecting political opinons/ideas - whatever - is entirely the point. It's clearly not about protecting the right to vocalise words in general as some physical action - it's entirely about the Government of the United States of the moment not being able to ban speech it has decided it doesn't like.

            Not that any of this is relevant in particular to myself not being under the protection of that Constitution so whatever - lawyer away.

            1. Eddy Ito

              Re: Rehabilitation

              @cyborg

              Let me sum up. It's true that free speech allows you to say anything, with a few exceptions, that you wish whether they be opinion, fact or fiction. It's equally true that someone else can't be forced to provide you with an income, job, etc. In effect this is what branding is. Coca Cola would probably like it if you didn't buy Pepsi products and only purchased Coke products and the reverse is also likely true. If a driver suddenly realizes they are in the wrong lane and cuts me off which forces me to jack on the binders they shouldn't really be surprised to find me giving them the finger and/or using the horn now should they. OkCupid is basically flipping off Mozilla because they hired Eich - it's Ok,Stupid, but nonetheless ok. In the end, the government really doesn't care and the Constitution doesn't come into play.

              1. cyborg
                Holmes

                Re: Rehabilitation

                "In the end, the government really doesn't care and the Constitution doesn't come into play."

                Short version: Didn't say they did.

            2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

              Re: Rehabilitation

              I don't really see how unless you want to be strangely pedantic and argue it's possible to have an opinion banned that you can nonetheless freely speak.

              Hardly surprising, since critical thinking doesn't appear to be your strong suit.

              It hardly takes an expert phenomenologist to observe a difference between holding and expressing an opinion. Though effective policing of the mind has been limited at best, up to the present day, that hasn't prevented many jurisdictions from attempting to outlaw the former separately from the latter, or simply let the latter serve as evidence of the former.

              The US Constitution and its amendments, concerned as they are with delimiting the powers of the state (that is, the Union and the several States), generally do not deal with matters inaccessible to government practice. Thus the First Amendment makes no statement about holding opinions.

              The point is that an argument that cites the Constitution but fundamentally mistakes its actual content is unlikely to hold much force.

              Clearly unless you're a lawyer prone to perverting language for no reason it's entirely sensible to read "speech" and "opinion" as basically synomous in that if you're allowed to speak something then unless thoughtcrime is to be prosecuted the opinion of the speaker as to that speech may be reasonable assumed from be what it is from the content of that speech; but even if it is not it's not relevant.

              "perverting language"? Strong words from someone who just penned a sentence like that. I'll skip past the naive intentionalism - there's no force to your argument even if it were an adequate model of the relationship between discourse and state of mind.

              You're on to something with that final clause, though.

              Besides protecting political opinons/ideas - whatever - is entirely the point.

              No, it entirely is not. Protecting political ideas, and the expression thereof, is completely and utterly not at issue here. No one's right to political expression has been compromised in the slightest.

              it's entirely about the Government of the United States of the moment not being able to ban speech it has decided it doesn't like

              Which has no bearing on this case.

              Not that any of this is relevant in particular to myself

              It's not relevant to anyone.

              1. localzuk

                Re: Rehabilitation

                I find it extremely odd that OKCupid is being held to a different standard than any other organisation. The company decided to have a collective opinion - one that fits with their business model.

                It seems here that some people are advocating the idea that businesses and their owners should not be allowed to use their business to express their views.

                Also odd is the fact that people are attacking OKCupid for expressing that view, calmly and quietly, with an option to completely ignore it and continue using their services, but are failing to understand that they are fully entitled to do whatever the hell they want with their own services.

                Its basically one view vs another, and that's about it. Looks like quite a few people don't understand the concept of free speech.

              2. cyborg
                FAIL

                Re: Rehabilitation

                "Hardly surprising, since critical thinking doesn't appear to be your strong suit."

                Oh this should be good.

                "It hardly takes an expert phenomenologist to observe a difference between holding and expressing an opinion. Though effective policing of the mind has been limited at best, up to the present day, that hasn't prevented many jurisdictions from attempting to outlaw the former separately from the latter, or simply let the latter serve as evidence of the former."

                Irrelevance not addressing anything.

                "The US Constitution and its amendments, concerned as they are with delimiting the powers of the state (that is, the Union and the several States), generally do not deal with matters inaccessible to government practice. Thus the First Amendment makes no statement about holding opinions."

                Irrelevant pedantry only a lawyer would care about. I've already stated that it is perfectly reasonable to a reasonable person - which doesn't appear to be your strong suit - that the context would allow for these things to be interchangeable especially when an expression of opinion *has* occurred.

                In other words if you'd like to reduce your throbbing vein of pedantry on your forehead just read "speech" instead of "opinion" and then you can calm down.

                You seem to have a problem with reading things written. Perhaps deal with that first before trying to feel superior in your "thinking".

                "I'll skip past the naive intentionalism - there's no force to your argument even if it were an adequate model of the relationship between discourse and state of mind."

                My argument is simply that you're making an argument for the hell of it. You've provided another sentence to justify that.

                "No one's right to political expression has been compromised in the slightest."

                I never said it was.

                Please attempt to read words as written. The point of the First Amendment is clearly to protect political opinion/speech/enaction - whatever. You have made it up in your own mind that I have said:

                * Anyone was actually being compromised here

                * The US government is involved in this case

                The reason for the invocation would be obvious if you weren't determined to be an ass. That the US government isn't the one trying to shut down the dialog doesn't invalidate the idea that perhaps the people of the country should have a particular attitude to this based upon the constitution created for their country.

                But please - if it makes you feel superior to a random person on the Internet do continue with irrelevancies only a lawyer would care about to a statement never uttered. Perhaps call into question whether I have any sexually transmitted diseases or suggest I have the brainpan of a of stage coach tilter. Big up your chest and thump it. Come on - you're a superior individual. You can do better than a lame ad hom right out the box. Or not.

                So let me make this quite clear again: I never said nor implied the US government was doing anything - you made that up in your own head. That's your problem: critical reading fail.

                K THX BYE.

  6. poopypants

    It is comforting

    to have my abiding detestation of Javascript validated.

  7. Laie Techie

    Ender's Game

    Are the same people up in arms over this who boycotted Ender's Game because of Card's views on same sex marriage?

    Eich used his personal money to promote his personal views six years ago. He does not use Mozilla Foundation money for political propaganda. Choose your browser based on features.

    1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

      Re: Ender's Game

      This is activism talking. Just like with any rabid activism the rights issue is secondary or even less important for them, the main goal being scoring a point. I believe it is called one-upmanship sometimes...

      For me the test is always how much emphasis is on ensuring the actual rights and how much is focused on the word "marriage". If its the latter - foooook ooov, oak stupid...

      1. NomNomNom

        Re: Ender's Game

        There are a bunch of good reasons to legalize gay marriage. There's rights and fairness of course, but even the act of riling up certain folk by trying to get it through is beneficial. It's like opening the windows of a stuffy house to let some fresh air in.

        Ultimately the good reasons for legalizing it outweigh the non-reasons for not legalizing it.

        1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

          Re: Ender's Game

          "There's rights and fairness of course, but even the act of riling up certain folk by trying to get it through is beneficial."

          Well, here is your problem - you just want to slap someone on the face for kicks, the rights and all be damned.

          This kind of activism is parasitic and is doing LGBT cause much more damage than good. These campaigners will have their fun and move on to some other kind of entertainment while leaving the ordinary gay people, who just want to live and let live, take all the flak and reaction, which will inevitably come.

          Instead of being on a moral high ground, these kind of campaigns are actually conducted from out of a moral sinkhole.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    OkStupid.

    1 All your hardware is probably made in China, a repressive regime that regularly imprisons or executes dissenters. Ok!

    2. Big US software companies. A nation that invades smaller nation for their oil and kills 100s of 1000s of civilians. Destroys your privacy via spook activity. Ok!

    3. Mozilla. One employee is a bigot. Boycott!!!!

    Ok, stupid.

    1. NomNomNom

      Re: OkStupid.

      Here's a hypothetical

      1) A CEO makes a racist comment in public.

      2) A website decides to organize a boycott of that CEO's product.

      What is your response?

      a) Write a comment agreeing that the CEO is wrong, and that the website is entitled to boycott and it might do some good.

      b) Desperately conjure up an argument to attack the website (why?), write that the website are hypocrites because they (probably!) run their website on computers made in China.

      1. Squander Two

        Re: OkStupid.

        There is nothing remotely racist about opposing gay marriage. Unless, of course, you claim that Barrack Obama was racist until a few years ago.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: OkStupid @Mahatma

      >Big US software companies. A nation that invades smaller nation for their oil and kills 100s of 1000s of civilians. Destroys your privacy via spook activity. Ok!

      Which nation did the US invade for oil and how much oil did it get? I only ask since I didn't see any lower fuel prices during or after any "invasion".

      Spooks do not destroy your privacy, they just back it up.

      > Mozilla. One employee is a bigot. Boycott!!!!

      The CEO is more than an employee. What would you think of him if he was pro-Nazi or pro-government spying? YOU only think there is not a problem with it because you are neutral about gay rights. If it was something you were passionate about then would you have issues using FF with him as CEO?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Personally I don't care who is allowed to marry who but I do care when people are pressured and bullied into publicly changing their views.

    Not so long ago the pressure could have gone the other way against a CEO supporting gay rights.

    What is considered acceptable by modern society changes in a heartbeat so it's damned important we make sure that everyone is protected to think or say what they want.

    If you have a problem with Brendan Eich then bring it up with Brendan Eich. Just like nobody's job should be at risk for being gay, bisexual, religious or whatever nobody's job should be at risk for holding an opinion.

  10. Slawek

    The only correct attitude to homosexuality and gay rights is enthusiastic support. Nothing else will do.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "The only correct attitude to homosexuality and gay rights is enthusiastic support. Nothing else will do."

      Thanks for the soapboxing. I'll stick with leaving people to their own lives and getting on with mine because I don't feel a need to show everyone what a great, accepting person I am, or how they should be like me.

    2. Nasty Nick

      Could this be I Ron E?

      Rearing it's ugly head on El Reg? Never!

    3. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

      @Slawek

      It seems there are a lot of broken sarcasm-meters today :-)

    4. Havin_it
      Coffee/keyboard

      Not sure why but the idea of providing "enthusiastic support [to] homosexuality" had me LOLing far too long.

      <RobSchneider>YOU CAN DO IT!!</RobSchneider>

    5. parry.lost

      Well... yes. No-one is threatening to put Eich in jail for not promoting gay rights, or whatever. If you mean it's the only "correct" view in the sense that it's morally correct to not limit people's rights based on their sexual orientation, then yes, it's the only correct view. Just like enthusiastic support is the only correct attitude towards the rights of black people, or women, or Jewish people, or whatever other group of people that's faced discrimination you care to name. Doesn't mean that you don't have a right to be racist, sexist, anti-semitic or whatever else you choose to be -- free speech! Oppose the rights of anyone you want! As long as you don't get violent, you have that right. And people have a right to criticise your views, on the front page of their websites, if they so wish.

  11. Paul 135

    This whole boycott thing could be a massive boon for Firefox development. With numerous irrational and hysterical people leaving the community then you are left with a more rational core that can improve Firefox in logical meritocratic ways. Hopefully this means that they will now scrap the "Australis" redesign and stopping the obsession with designing first and foremost for effeminate Mac users!

    1. Michael Habel Silver badge

      This whole boycott thing could be a massive boon for Firefox development. With numerous irrational and hysterical people leaving the community then you are left with a more rational core that can improve Firefox in logical meritocratic ways. Hopefully this means that they will now scrap the "Australis" redesign and stopping the obsession with designing first and foremost for effeminate Mac users!

      Well... We can dream anyway....

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sad but only in America

    with its plainly puritanical outlook on many things can this sort of thing happen.

    Last weekend, we had the introduction of same-sex marriage in England. sure there were a few detractors and at the moment, most Church's won't perform the ceremony but in time I am sire that they will.

    Contrast that to the ostracization my family received from our US neighbors because we decided that we didn't want to have children. comments like 'failing society', 'procreation is a god given right' were made to our face. Then we completed the falling out by not going to Church on a Sunday.

    We came home soon after that. The USA remains (despite the NSA/TSA etc) a nice place to visit but I would not want to live there again.

    1. Havin_it

      Re: Sad but only in America

      Wow, that sucks. Dare I ask what part of the US you were in? (I might have a rough hunch.)

      Having made the same decision, my BH and I have spent the last ~10 years dealing with a fair amount of incredulity (and I'd say a smidgen of condescension at times) from our peers and elders. Weddings are the worst, since we also get it for not having married ourselves (15 years in and still see no argument for it).

      Thankfully our circle are a pretty heathen bunch too, so we've never faced religious disapproval like that. Then again, I suspect once such high-handed types realise you're a heathen at heart, they will find fault wherever they can :( Anyway, you have our sympathies.

    2. Squander Two

      How to avoid pressure to have kids.

      Whenever anyone brings the subject up, the woman should immediately leave the room, looking tearful, while the man goes very stony-faced and keeps responding to people's anxious enquiries after her that "It's fine. Don't worry about it. She'll be fine. No need to apologise. Let's just talk about something else." You should not need to do this many times before people stop asking.

      1. Havin_it

        Re: How to avoid pressure to have kids.

        Nah, these people are still (by and large) our friends, we're patient with them and wouldn't want to interrupt a generally pleasant soirée with a bout of psy-ops.

        ...although, were it to come to that point of exhausting our patience, I believe the response would be something along the lines of: "Because we get to keep all our lovely money for ourselves, and the only vomit we'll smell of tomorrow morning will be each other's."

        (Not that I've really thought of it, or anything...)

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Sad but only in America

      > Contrast that to the ostracization my family received from our US neighbors

      Don't judge a nation from the actions of a few citizens otherwise all French are stuck-up, German fearing arseholes, there isn't a dentist in Brittan (and all male Brtis act like Hugh Grant), Germans are hell bent on world domination due to their superior race, Russians cannot be trusted and all are spies, all Chinese have a secret agenda and are naturally amazing with Maths, etc

    4. Euripides Pants Silver badge
      Thumb Down

      Re: Sad but only in America

      "Then we completed the falling out by not going to Church on a Sunday."

      Texas is not part of the United States. Don't know how we wound up with LBJ and Dubya, maybe someone changed the law about having to be born a citizen to be Prez. I suppose we'll end up with Arnie in the White House soon....

  13. bigfoot780

    An opinion

    Its the guys opinion. I thought it was a post-modern/no absolutes society. Apparently it is unless you disagree with the majority. The absolute of who shouts the loudest prevails.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's not just an "opinion"

    Brendan Eich didn't just hold, or voice, "an opinion". Brendan Eich actively sponsored a political campaign to remove the rights of people like me to marry. There's a fundamental difference between holding an opinion and actively removing the rights of others. Someone asked above "what if he had come out for LGBT rights" - can you honestly think of a single instance where heterosexual people are having their human rights impinged by the LGBT community? It's so much more than simply "expressing an opinion", and therefore people have a right to protest. No-one is forcing you to boycott.

    Just imagine if he'd funded a motion in favour of stripping the rights of women to vote. Or funded the KKK. Or the Nazi party (Henry Ford). No-one would want the figurehead of their company to be publicly associated with these causes, and this is exactly the position that Mozilla find themselves in now.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: It's not just an "opinion"

      "actively removing the rights of others"

      So, he doesn't agree with your point of view then. By supporting a different view from your own, he is removing your rights.?

      No he's not, he's just not helping you get the rights that you want...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: It's not just an "opinion"

      So what?

      He held an opinion. He donated money. A bill (excuse if that's the wrong phrase, I neither know the law nor am I American) was passed which was later found to be undemocratic and reversed.

      Seems like common sense and due process won.

      If he'd donated money to, say, an Arms or Oil Exploration company or the NRA then I suspect very few people in the USA would bat an eyelid.

      His views may be so entrenched in the middle of the last century as to be laughable (by the way, I'm a happily bisexual guy. My personal preferences have always been towards ladies and I'm happily married with two kids. My wife is fully aware of my past and is comfortable with it) and the only question I personally had with regards to the legalisation of homosexual marriage in the UK was "why not?"

      In the same way I am appalled at the behaviour of some members of the heterosexual community (political 'leaders', financiers etc) I am equally appalled by the behaviour of some homosexuals (e.g. the guys I saw on TV at a gay pride in Manchester a few years ago who'd spray-painted themselves flourescent green and were wearing clingfilm with a a huge banner exclaiming they were here to stay and live with it whilst behaving overtly sexually for the camera). My point is judge people on the way they act NOW.

      I've made mistakes. Sure you have? I've changed my points of view as I've got older too. Sure you have?

      Let's judge him on the here and now and see how he behaves If he acts like an asshat NOW, then deal with it.

      Just my own view. Yours may vary and is still equally valid but let's not foam at the mouth, eh?

    3. squilookle
      Coat

      Re: It's not just an "opinion"

      "can you honestly think of a single instance where heterosexual people are having their human rights impinged by the LGBT community?"

      Yes, a vocal section of the LGBT community are currently trying to impinge the rights of a man who once spent his own money on a cause he believed in (however misguided) to peacefully carry out a job he got 6 years later that is unrelated to the issue and should be divorced from politics.

      Yes, people have a right to protest, but what this guy did was take part in a democratic process, however misguided the views might be. Rather than attacking one man and endangering his livelihood, the LGBT community should be taking part in the same democratic process to ensure the rights they now have are secure. I also worry that we are on a slippery slope where anyone of any political view could feel the sharp end of this kind of boycott for any reason.

      If, during the course of his time as CEO at Mozilla he does anything to that affects the rights of Mozilla employees or users in anyway in his current role, have your boycott and I'll join you.

      I'm not dismissing the issue of marriage as unimportant, but since he is not currently a threat to anyone's rights, this effort and energy could be used to solve so many other more pressing problems, as others here (and even okCupid "we all know there’s a lot more wrong with the world than misguided CEOs. So you might wonder why we’re asserting ourselves today.") have acknowledged we have..

  15. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge
    Happy

    Freedom of expression in action

    There are many political movements with ideas despicable to me (anti-gay rights views are among them), but they have a right to say it out loud. In fact, I had rather they say it out loud, so I know what they are thinking, rather than having them scheme in the dark. In a democracy every political opinion may be expressed, and you may join or support every political party. At the same time you may be held accountable for your expressions, and if you step beyond the boundaries set by law, you may get punished. Furthermore, if you express opinions held in contempt by others, do not be surprised if they in their turn voice their contempt. It is their right.

    Thus, Eich is perfectly allowed to support a political cause, OkCupid is perfectly entitled to protest, and we can hold both sides in contempt (or not) for different reasons. All part of democracy (nobody said it was going to be nice).

    I still think the message of "love promoting" OkCupid comically full of bile, hence my smile.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Freedom of expression in action

      > In a democracy every political opinion may be expressed,

      This is not true. I refer you to the "ley de partidos" in Spain.

      > and you may join or support every political party

      This is not true either. I refer you to the judicial decisions based on the above law.

  16. Paul Crawford Silver badge

    OK Cupids untained ethics?

    Ah yes, the site that pulled the blog about the money-grabbing approach of match.com when, ah yes, when they were bough over for $50M:

    http://www.geekosystem.com/okcupid-pulls-why-you-should-never-pay-for-online-dating-match-com/

    While I fully support LGBT rights, I find this a pointless attack on an open-source project for the past personal actions of one person. No doubt by those with numerous gadgets made in China by what is barely different from slave labour...

  17. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Firefox puts up page when trying to get to OkCupid.com

    Telling the user that the purveyors of that site use it to push their own political message. We advise you to use one of the other many such sites.

    But the real question is, is there a real person using OKCupid.com, or are they all bots?

  19. Rich 2 Silver badge

    1984 Thought Police

    This is nothing short of the Thought Police. You do not agree with me therefore you are evil and must be eliminated. At the considerable risk of having the Thought Police come down on me (not that I give a stuff), it's the same thing that happens when anyone criticises Israel (that's anti-Jewish apparently), or dares to make an aeroplane seat that won't accommodate a 50 stone person who got that way by eating him/herself stupid (that's anti-"larger people" apparently), or taking a dislike to the people who parked up in their caravans in a field on the edge of the village and after being told that it was private land and they shouldn't be there, promptly stuck one of the villager's chickens to the ground with a pitch fork (that's anti-"traveller" apparently - and yes, I lived in that village).

    I'm not comparing gay marriage with some c**t that murders chickens, but it seems whenever there is any sound of decent at all that goes against "what you SHIOULD think" it is immediately pounced on (idiots with megaphones), legislated against (it must be racist or something - MUST be!), and generally shouted-down until the voice is quelled.

    What a fucked-up society we live in.

  20. Charlie Clark Silver badge

    Check the date

    Is "activism" the latest form of PR? The only way to get heard in cacophonie of social media? Are they doing this only as an April 1st stunt to get headlines and clicks?

  21. Vociferous

    Slight overreaction?

    Or just a desperate marketing ploy from OK Cupid?

    Discuss.

  22. Just Trolling thru
    Angel

    Firefox here I come.

    Busy downloading Firefox now, maybe it's not such a bad browser...

  23. Michael Habel Silver badge

    Really I couldn't give a toss if Mozilla had hired Hitler, or your Milk snatching Thatcher! All I demand outta my "Browser" is a decent, and as uncomplicated a user experience as possible. Something that Mozilla themselves, irregardless of who's supposedly at the Helm, are doing their damnedest to upset. At this point I'd really wish that someone would go back to FF v3.0 and fork that into a new Browser that both sticks as close to tradition of that, and yet is able to keep updating said Browser with such Security fixes as needed.

    At which point Mozilla could rot alongside there crappy "Awesome Screen", their all singing, and dancing Australis GUI, and that poor assed excuse of a download manager that they stuck us with since Build 25, with no way to revert back to prior version. Without having to install some broken Third Party Plugin for.

    These are the the points in which One should be upset with Mozilla, not because they hired some Assclown that doesn't confirm to someone else fruity lifestyle.

  24. Elmer Phud

    I'm going to stop using . . .

    Microsoft as I can't stand those selfish bastards who give away millions to help others.

    I'm going to stop using any form of LINUX as it's used by criminals.

    I refuse to like Chrome as I don't like metal.

    I'm never, ever going to use anything ever again that has been made by Chinese people or Vietnamese or or or.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So software has political views now?

    That can only make things more difficult...

  26. JDX Gold badge

    "roughly 8% of the relationships we've worked so hard to bring about would be illegal."

    8% of people who have used their site are in gay marriages? That sounds hard to believe, since even among the minority of gay people, only a minority in relationships are married...

  27. detritus

    Perhaps they're slinging mud to divert attention from their own internal grubbiness after the recent Justine ‘Going to Africa. Hope I don't get AIDS’ Sacco disaster?

  28. This Side Up
    WTF?

    Crafting inclusive policies

    'Last week, Eich blogged that he was working with "LGBT individuals and allies" to craft inclusive policies at Mozilla'

    Why is it necessary to craft inclusive policies? JUST DON'T DISCRIMINATE.

  29. Mr Anonymous

    Fail

    The Boycott page and, as usual, the rest of their site doesn't work unless you use Brendan Eich's Javascript.

    1. dogged
      Thumb Up

      Re: Fail

      Beautiful. Well spotted.

  30. Miss Config
    WTF?

    Doing the same as Eich ( by not breaking law )

    Suppose I am gay and work for Mozilla.

    I am so disgusted by Eich I decide to get a job elsewhere.

    Now please explain in what way am I 'worse' than Eich ?

    Both Eich and I are the same in that

    NEITHER OF US HAS BROKEN ANY LAWS.

    But it's the anti-Eich crowd here who get the grief.

    Afaics the pro-Eich gang suggest, intentionally or not,

    the Eich's rights IMPOSE A DUTY on others not to respond negatively.

    What am I missing ?

    1. dogged

      Reductio ad absurdam

      Suppose you support legalization of cocaine and you work for Mozilla.

      Cocaine is illegal.

      You do not use it but you donate to a "legalize" campaign.

      SHOULD YOU BE SHOT IN THE FACE?

      1. Havin_it

        Re: Reductio ad absurdam

        >SHOULD YOU BE SHOT IN THE FACE?

        Yup. Keep off our turf.

        -P. Escobar

  31. Keefey

    As a gay man I have to admit that I find his promotion and the comments here disheartening. I do believe there's a difference between holding an opinion and funding a campaign which only leads to fear and hate. This is particularly so for a company that prides itself on an ethical responsibility to providing something that extends humanity; to being a force for good. Just reading the tweets from Mozilla employees shows this. It's beyond the OK cupid stunt and has been for weeks. The question is: is Brendan's appointment ethically exclusive to the ideals that Mozilla, as a company, is striving for?

    Obviously, being an gay, I'm biased in my opinion here, but it's not just a case of opinion. If I could throw money at my cause - for a cause which I believe is a basic right - I would, but I'm just not in that position. So, does the fact that someone at the helm of an organisation that has such roots in ethical responsibility hold, and actively throw money at, a belief so contrary to those core values sit uncomfortably? Pretty much. I have always loved Mozilla so I find this decision surprising.

    Am I going to boycott? No. I like what Mozilla are trying to achieve. Do I think it was a mistake? Absolutely.

    Prop8 would have affected me little as a Brit living in Australia, but, living in a country where there's obviously little separation of church from state, companies such as Mozilla have the ability to send an enormous positive message, and this isn't one.

    1. dogged

      > As a gay man I have to admit that I find his promotion and the comments here disheartening.

      Really? You suspect then, that only those who wholeheartedly support gay rights - or perhaps, only homosexuals? - can do a decent job as CEO of Mozilla?

      You have some evidence that legal historic donation to a political campaign (which lost) somehow renders one incompetent in entirely unrelated fields?

      I should be interested in reviewing the studies which led you to this conclusion.

      1. Keefey

        That's not what I said at all. I'm more than confident that he will do a sterling job at the helm, I'm questioning whether his appointment matches the core corporate social responsibilty ideals that the company quite publicly bases itself upon, and one in which even staff of the company feel uncomfortable with. I'm questioning the ethics, not his ability. If I had said the above statement without mentioning my sexuality would you still have been so hostile?

        1. dogged

          I'm not hostile. I'm... obstructive, I suppose. Personality politics annoy me, mostly because I used to live with a very strident feminist.

          I don't like what's implied by Brendan Eich's donation but we have to remember that it is only an implication. He hasn't changed any policies or made any rules discriminating against gay people or anyone else.

          Put it this way - I wouldn't much like the idea of a rabidly fundie Christian taking over the company I work for but... provided we didn't have to say grace in the canteen and nothing else changed and he did a good job, it would be both uncharitable and - yes, let's go there - bigoted of me to reject him based on nothing more than a single assumption.

          Am I making sense?

          1. Keefey

            Absolutely. My position here is that it's not an overarching cause he donated to, like Greenpeace or whatever, but that he specifically chucked a grand at a specific non-secular (effectively, at its core), very focused cause that aims to deny basic rights to a significant portion of even the company he was working for at the time. His position is that, even though mozilla has this amazing, welcoming culture, that he doesn't agree with it. I'm questioning that assumption because the cause was so specific. I think it's safe to make a conclusion from that assumption.

            Knowing that donations above a certain level become public you surely must wonder why he would do it.

            Please believe me that I'm not a Militant Gay. I'm questioning, not judging. And I'm ultra-proud to be working for a company that embodies the same beliefs that Mozilla do.

            1. Santa from Exeter

              Questions, questions

              Of course it was a non secular cause. It's all about marriage, which is as non secular at its core as you can get!

              How do you know he does not, now, agree with the culture at Mozilla? Have you actually asked him or are you simply assuming that he hasn't changed his views in 6 years?

              Along those lines, how do you know that his funding of the cause was specifically about denying anyone 'fundememntal rights' (how is marriage a fundemental right anyway?) given that Gay marriage is not unanimously supported by the Gay community anyway?

              I'm not a Militant anything personally, I just have something of a problem with anyone, regardless of sexual orientation, declaring random things to be 'fundemental rights', usually when they want these things for themselves and believe that they can't get them.

              This sounds a little attacking, but it's certainly not meant in that vein, just a little too rushed at lunchtime at work to carefully reword it :-)

              1. Havin_it
                Joke

                @Santa re:'fundememntal rights'

                Well that is the absolute limit!

                I defy anyone to challenge my rights to fund Emmental, sponsor Havarti, underwrite Appenzeller, or indeed lobby stridently in favour of Roquefort if I so choose. Where will this madness end?!

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Questions, questions

                > I just have something of a problem with anyone, regardless of sexual orientation, declaring random things to be 'fundemental rights',

                So do I. I fucking hate people who can't spell.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        > Really? You suspect then, ...

        That's not what the other poster said, mate. Read him again, carefully, before jumping to conclusions.

        > donation to a political campaign (which lost)

        Did not lose. It won the vote and was approved. But then it was found to be unconstitutional (i.e., contrary the higher values of the State) and therefore it was struck from the books.

        > somehow renders one incompetent in entirely unrelated fields?

        The previous bloke did not question this man's competence--he did question the advisability of making him the public face of a foundation that (allegedly anyway) espouses certain social values which are not really in line with this man's political stance.

        I think that's the core of the issue--I doubt many people would have a problem with him being CEO of say Oracle, or the HSBC, but appoint him to the top job in Amnesty International or Human Rights Watch and eyebrows may be raised.

        Besides this, I suspect some internal power struggle at Mozilla, but that's another matter.

    2. Benjol

      "OK cupid stunt".

      Wow, if there was ever a phrase to be spoonered...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "OK cupid stunt"

        > Wow, if there was ever a phrase to be spoonered...

        See the late, and very great, Kenny Everett; "Foot"-in-mouth is your cryptic clue for the political connection.

  32. A J Stiles

    So, what do you recommend then?

    I want a web browser, obviously; and I want the same Source Code and Modification Rights as I've grown used to over the years. (So not Chrome, Opera or IE, unless they have had a policy U-turn recently).

    What does everyone recommend?

    1. dogged

      Re: So, what do you recommend then?

      You could fork Firefox and call it "FayFox" or something?

    2. Miss Config

      Re: So, what do you recommend then?

      on Windows you could try Pale Moon ( but not on Linux ) :

      http://www.palemoon.org/

  33. TrishaD

    Reading some of the comments on here, you'd think that there were crack squads of screaming queens being deployed to publicly berate anyone using Firefox.

    If Eich's position on gay marriage is sufficiently offensive to you to make you stop using Firefox, dont use Firefox.

    If it isnt, carry on using it

    Nobody's Rights are being compromised, nobody's making people do stuff.

    Nobody took his right to free speech away. He can still do what he wants. I can still do what I want. Including not using Firefox.

    1. NomNomNom

      The legalization movement has the moral high ground on the whole freedom/constitution/rights issue.

      That's why those in opposition to legalization are trying so hard to take that ground out by accusing supporters of being just as intolerant as them.

      It's probably also as much an attempt to justify their position to themselves. Blind bigotry doesn't go down well, but if you can convince yourself that your view is no more intolerant than the alternative you can probably live with that.

      1. squilookle

        For me, it's more to do with the fact that a boycott is supposed to be a tool to force something to change for the better. In this case, I don't believe there is anything to change. The focus is on something that happened six years ago and there is no evidence the chap at the centre of it is planning to use his position to deny anyone's rights. I see nothing to suggest the guy will do anything other than his job.

        If there is nothing to change for the better, and the boycott is either punishment for holding (and acting on) different beliefs to those supporting the boycott, or a marketing stunt (for the chaps that started it, and now for okCupid). Either of these would be unnacceptable.

        Note: I'm in favour of anyone being able to marry if they want to - but I'm also in favour of people being able to support any campaign they choose (think of all the things we have because we have that basic right to support any campaign we choose).

  34. Irongut Silver badge

    Land of the free?

    So much for that. Don't they have a constitution that is supposed to protect his free speech? Or is it just free speech that agrees with a certain part of the population that is protected?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      WTF?

      Re: Land of the free?

      Are you seriously as stupid as you sound? I mean, really - do you just hit the keyboard with your head a few times and post whatever comes out? Or do you actively work at the level of phenomenal ignorance you've achieved? I'm genuinely curious.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Land of the free?

        > Are you seriously [....]

        Splendid insult, Sir! My hat's off to you.

    2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: Land of the free?

      No one's freedom of speech, as established by the First Amendment to the US Constitution and the laws, regulations, and court opinions derived therefrom, has been in any way abridged by anything related to this story. I realize that's a tough idea for some Reg readers to grasp.

      Neither the US Federal government, nor the government of any political entity within its jurisdiction, are involved in this particular scuffle. Thus there can't be any government interference with freedom of expression.

      Nor is there any philosophical conflict between the principles implied by the BoR and any boycott over political opinion. In the US, in the ordinary case, people are certainly free to choose not to do business with those whose expressed opinions they dislike. That's part of having a free market.

      Most of the major political thinkers of the early US actively encouraged dissent. Jefferson went so far as to endorse periodic armed rebellion. Samuel Adams suggested that people were free to opt out of the social contract. I think you'd have to look very hard in their writings to find any suggestion that when someone expresses an opinion, everyone else is supposed to smile encouragingly and pat him on the head.

      Whether you like Eich or don't, the political philosophy of the US certainly doesn't encourage keeping quiet about it.

    3. parry.lost

      Re: Land of the free?

      "Free speech" means the government doesn't have a right to come and arrest you for saying something they don't like.

      Free speech does *not* mean "freedom from criticism," or "freedom from any consequences whatsoever for anything I've said or done." If someone doesn't like your views, and feels like saying so, they have a right to free speech as well.

  35. Matt Bryant Silver badge
    Facepalm

    OKCupid marketing team sit back and rub hands in glee...

    "See, I told you it would get us lots of free publicity!"

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    heterophobes

    try to stop people who have expresssed hate and intolerance by expressing hate and intolerance.

    Double bind anyone?

    1. parry.lost

      Re: heterophobes

      Yes, heterophobia! Why, even now the gay community is plotting to make marriage to Brendan Eich illegal!

    2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: heterophobes

      Sophomores.

      Keep trotting out the same tired, ill-conceived arguments.

      Eternal September is eternal.

  37. MeRp

    Fully 8% of the relationships started on OKCupid are homosexual marriages? Not just homosexual relationships, but actual marriages? That's quite a lot.

    Or was the OKCupid statement trying to imply that, because this guy was against homosexual marriage that he is also against homosexual relationships and believes that they should be against the law? That is quite a stance to apply to someone based on a single political donation.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "because this guy was against homosexual marriage that he is also against homosexual relationships and believes that they should be against the law? That is quite a stance to apply to someone based on a single political donation."

      The odds of someone who was even slightly moderate when it comes to this issue - say, supporting 'civil unions' but not marriage for gays - donating $1000 to the prop8 campaign are astronomically low.

      Basically, prop8 was masterminded by the same ignorant, fundamentalist nutjobs who think the earth is 6000 years old and evolution is a trick from the devil; they're a step up from the Taliban but not a big one. You don't throw your lot in with those guys if you're just kinda ambivalent about the whole thing.

      The irony is that Reg readers absolutely love to bash Americans for being intolerant, stupid, religious nut bigots - but as soon as gay rights are mentioned, the lot of you are rushing to the defense of a guy who gave those same people a thousand bucks in an effort to promote a bill which specifically denied rights to a segment of the population - which, incidentally, is something that quite a few readers here fail to understand.

      So much for all the psychotic puritans having come over here...

      1. MeRp

        To someone who makes tens or hundreds of millions of dollars a year, a $1000 is the same as the rest of us a couple quarters to something; it is not a major commitment.

        The attitude that if you're not with me then you're my enemy pervades so much of society, but it is especially strong amongst "gay rights" advocates, it seems. Even if someone so much as disagrees with a single point, they are thereafter to be considered gay bashers who would be content if the laws advocated unlicensed nuisance hunts on homosexuals.

        In case you couldn't tell, that was an exaggeration. But it was only slight. I have a friend who has this exact attitude, and, being that I'm pretty much moderate on the topic (ie gay marriage, to me is just like any other marriage: it shouldn't be any of the Fed's business), she comes off as thinking I'm Satan, only more evil. She uses the same argument; that if one doesn't care enough about gay people to let them marry, then they probably also don't care that there are crimes against humanity (targeting homosexuals) ongoing in Uganda. That is patently false.

        As for America bashing; you will not see me doing it.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          > but it is especially strong amongst "gay rights" advocates, it seems.

          Just because your friend may be a nutjob it doesn't mean everyone else is. I am also wary of, let's say "fervent advocates" of any cause... especially those that one day you see campaigning for black and the next day they're all for white.

  38. Euripides Pants Silver badge

    "several prominent web developers"

    You mean two guys no one has heard of that have a start-up that almost makes a product.

    Setting the bar pretty low, El Reg...

  39. sisk

    That's it! I'm boycotting OK Cupid! I'm going to tell my wife to also.

    ....Oh.....wait....

    Actually I may still have an account there from back before I met my wife. As I recall their gag surveys such as "Which Star Wars character are you" were more useful than their dating service. They never could find a match for me in a 100 mile radius. Then again the only online dating service I ever tried that did find a match for me at all tried to pair me with a woman with whom I'd already had a relationship that failed rather spectacularly.

  40. parry.lost

    Ahem... Most of you are missing a part of this.

    The article doesn't really make this clear -- but regardless of the official stance of Mozilla as a company, Eich himself has never actually recanted his opposition to same-sex marriage. He has promised not to discriminate against gay people within Mozilla, etc., but at no point -- as far as I have read, at least -- has he ever said that he has changed his mind, and that he is in favour of the right to equal marriage now.

    If he did, I think -- despite what some of the commenters here are claiming -- that the attitude towards him would, indeed, change, and that his appointment as CEO wouldn't be seen so negatively. I think a lot of people who are upset about this would be perfectly happy with him staying on as CEO if he'd just make a public statement to the effect of "I was wrong, gay marriage is A-Ok, sorry about that." Maybe he could make a small donation to some pro-gay marriage cause, to "balance out" the donation he made for Proposition 8. I know that'd be good enough for me, anyway.

    Also, I don't think that being for or against LGBT rights are just different flavours of political thought, as some commenters seem to be seeing it. Trying to pass a law to prevent gay couples from getting married isn't just advocating some harmless personal belief -- it's trying to force your personal beliefs onto others; in fact, it's being willing to hurt others in order to ensure that they comply with your personal beliefs.

    Gay people don't hurt anyone when they get married. Advocating LGBT rights doesn't hurt anyone. Trying to take away gay people's rights, and trying to advocate for them, are not morally equivalent positions.

    And free speech doesn't mean speech free from criticism, or free from consequences -- such as people no longer wanting to work with you. Eich is perfectly free to advocate against gay marriage. He's free to advocate against inter-racial marriage, for that matter, if he felt like it... But that doesn't mean he has a right to have everyone around him politely ignore his views, and carry on working with him like nothing in the world is wrong.

    The only valid point I think I've heard so far in Eich's defence is that it's a reality of modern life that many of the products we use have morally-ambiguous origins -- obviously far more so than Mozilla, in most cases. That still doesn't mean any of us have to be OK with Eich, though.

  41. YARR
    Thumb Down

    Being pro-marriage does not imply being anti-gay, but those who lobby for gay-marriage are anti-family. Traditionally marriage is about more than the mutual needs of those who choose to commit to it, it puts the needs of children over those of their parents. A relationship that produces and nurtures a new generation and passes on the love and inherited debt of care serves a higher duty to society than a relationship focused solely on just two people's needs.

    What's more the actions of OkCupid are both an example of diverting away from the real argument and attempting to escalate both the level and domain of conflict from an ideological one to an entirely unrelated area. This in itself is wrong and equates them with others who attempt to escalate real conflicts in the same way.

    If gays and lesbians want equality with marriage, then they should seek to build relationships with each other that prioritise a commitment to raising a family above their own sexual proclivites, even if it takes more than two people to achieve this.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I presume, then, that since your argument has nothing to do with gay people being gay, but is only due to your belief that marriage is "for children", you favor a ban on marriage between a man and woman should one of them be infertile, injured, or otherwise unable to contribute to the creation of offspring?

      Obviously marriage should also be prohibited between straight couples when the woman is post-menopausal as well; after all, marriage isn't about just fulfilling their sexual desires, right?

      I look forward to your brave clarification of this issue, particularly as I have not yet seen anyone who has been able to resolve the inconsistency or accept the consequences of his own argument.

    2. parry.lost

      People don't usually get married out of deep philosophical considerations about the social good. Usually, reasons are much more personal, and, often, more selfish than that.

      There are straight people who get married but who don't want kids, or even can't have kids for medical reasons.

      There are straight people who have kids without being married, for one reason or another.

      There are gay couples who adopt children, or have children with the help of surrogates. The fight for adoption rights has long been another major front on the fight for LGBT rights.

      "Those who lobby for gay-marriage are anti-family" doesn't make any sense. Family is exactly what gay couples who want to get married are all about -- they want their partner to be officially recognized as their family. You are the one making the assumption that it's all about "sexual proclivities." Gay people don't need marriage licenses to have sex with each other. They want marriage licenses precisely because, like most people, they sometimes want a deeper relationship than that, and they want that relationship to be respected and recognized the same as relationships between straight people.

    3. sisk

      Being pro-marriage does not imply being anti-gay,

      True.

      but those who lobby for gay-marriage are anti-family.

      False.

      If gays and lesbians want equality with marriage, then they should seek to build relationships with each other that prioritise a commitment to raising a family above their own sexual proclivites, even if it takes more than two people to achieve this.

      There are many gay couples who want to do just that. There are also many more children awaiting adoption than there are straight couples looking to adopt. So by your own logic they should not only be allowed to marry, but they should be allowed to adopt.

  42. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Really? Who is tolerant, accepting, and open minded?

    The people that are boycotting really aren't willing to listen or debate the issues.

    I am a Christian heterosexual man with a wife and kids. I find it interesting that a biblical term like marriage can be hijacked and used for relationships as anyone sees fit. It is a word that had a clearly defined meaning for thousands of years. Many people of faith have an issue with the word being used outside of the Church. People of faith keep turning the other cheek and getting walked on, and frankly I believe we just need to say that is our term, find a new one. The "m" word if you will.

    Here is a thought, use a different term for the legal status that people are calling marriage. Not just for homosexual people, but heterosexual people. In other words redefine it for EVERYONE. Use the legal term of partner and civil union. Leave the terms wife, husband, and marriage to the Church. Drop tax benefits for all heterosexual and homosexual people.

    I don't care if someone else wants to share their life with whomever they choose, love whomever you want. Share your benefits with whomever you want. Have whomever you want with you in hospital, leave your belongings to whomever you want if you die.

    Now that we're redefining what a household contains, should there be any limits at all? If we drop all the rules would we be better off? Live and let live?

    1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

      Re: Really? Who is tolerant, accepting, and open minded?

      "Leave the terms wife, husband, and marriage to the Church."

      Hmm, I think I can find a rabbi or two who will easily provide evidence of prior use...

    2. TrishaD

      Re: Really? Who is tolerant, accepting, and open minded?

      "Leave the terms wife, husband, and marriage to the Church."

      I'm afraid you're working from a false premise here.

      As a C of E prelate (I think it may have been the Bishop of Salisbury) noted prior to the Commons vote, the Christian Church played little or no part in marriages for anyone other than the wealthy or noble until after the 15thC. Not even a blessing. People married outside Church with no religious ceremony as a matter of routine.

      The Church does not own marriage. Never has done.

  43. Stephen Gray

    No mention they supported Barak when he was anti gay marriage

    Sam Yagan, who is currently CEO of the Match Group ultimate owners of this pointless website solely designed to fleece disadvantaged members of society, donated $500 to Barack Obama in 2007 and 2008 back when he still opposed gay marriage. Also they still use Java on the site. Wouldn't want to stop those poor saps who pay for their bullshit "service". Try creating an account with these charlatans and see what "matches" you get.

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