Thunderbird Reorganization: Summary Plan

Gervase Markham gerv at
Thu Sep 11 08:46:23 UTC 2014

On 11/09/14 09:41, Benjamin Kerensa wrote:
>> 1) Thunderbird to remain an independent project under the Mozilla umbrella,
>> but with a large degree of autonomy. Thunderbird to be subject to the
>> Mozilla Manifesto and brand, but may depart from the current Mozilla Mission
>> of promoting the web as a platform.
> But the manifesto calls for promoting the web as a platform so if we
> follow the Mozilla Manifesto we could not depart from that Mission.

The manifesto speaks of the Internet, not the web. In the context of
Thunderbird, this distinction is important. It also doesn't contain the
word "platform".

Even if Mozilla-the-project's focus and Mozilla Corporation's money are
not significantly directed towards messaging and Thunderbird, I don't
see anything in the 10 principles in the manifesto which the Thunderbird
community would need to deny:

>> 2) Overall authority for the Thunderbird project to be held by a group of
>> people representing various stakeholders, including representation from both
>> the community and Mozilla staff, as well as representation from developers,
>> support, marketing, qc, and users. The name and structure of this group are
>> yet to be determined, but initially call it by the neutral name of the
>> "Oversight Group" or OG.
> Why replace the Module System? This is what all Mozilla projects use.

De facto, the Module System is not the only mechanism of governance the
Mozilla project has. (Making all of this clearer and better is a big
project, and a discussion for another time.) In practice, the difference
between the above and a MO/peers system is solely that an OG system
would not have a single decision-maker. I think it's OK for the
Thunderbird team to experiment with new forms of governance,
particularly if there is no-one paid full-time to take on the burden of
being the buck-stops-here person.


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