Thunderbird’s Future: the TL;DR Version

Kent James kent at caspia.com
Wed Aug 13 17:52:05 UTC 2014


On 8/11/2014 6:57 PM, Robert Kaiser wrote:
> Axel Grude schrieb:
>> Am 11/08/2014 um 20:42 schrieb Kent James:
>>> <rant>I have been trying for 2 years to get permission to publish the
>>> available data on Thunderbird usage without success. Yes we have data,
>>> yes Thunderbird usage is growing, but these numbers are only available
>>> to staff, and when shared with me privately they are always stated as
>>> unshareable except in broad statements. Nobody seems to be able to
>>> figure out who has permission to release these numbers publicly. 
>>> </rant>
>> Ok, this one I really don't understand. What's the point in an open
>> source product when you can't share usage data?
>
> The concern is and always has been what the press makes of that data.

For Thunderbird, the numbers (particularly in the nice graph that JB 
sent to me) present a great story to counter the current, universal 
misunderstanding that "Thunderbird is dead".  We really need to publish 
that graph!

But beyond that, I don't think it is good practice to restrict data 
because we are afraid that it will make us look bad, or that the press 
will misunderstand it. When politicians do that, we rightly protest 
vigorously. I don't think Mozilla should be held to a lower standard of 
openness.
Or does protecting the brand mean hiding information that might be 
negative or misunderstood? Aren't we supposed to be different?

>
> It's something we need to weight carefully.
OK let's weigh it. But who? The main essence of my rant is that nobody 
makes the case that the Thunderbird numbers should be secret, and yet 
nobody is able to locate someone with the authority to release them 
publicly.

You seem to know a lot about these numbers. Where can I file a bug to 
get the regular data sent to me? Who do I talk to that can grant 
permission to release these numbers for Thunderbird?

:rkent



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