The Mozilla Blog., 17 .
Dispatches from the Internet frontier.

 
 
1. Mozilla Files Suit Against FCC to Protect Net Neutrality., 16 .[−]

Today, Mozilla filed a petition in federal court in Washington, DC against the Federal Communications Commission for its recent decision to overturn the 2015 Open Internet Order.

Why did we do this?

The internet is a global, public resource. It relies on the core principle of net neutrality (that all internet traffic be treated equally) to exist. If that principle is removed with only some content and services available or with roadblocks inserted by ISPs to throttle or control certain services the value and impact of that resource can be impaired or destroyed.

Ending net neutrality could end the internet as we know it. Thats why we are committed to fighting the order. In particular, we filed our petition today because we believe the recent FCC decision violates both federal law as well as harms internet users and innovators. In fact, it really only benefits large Internet Service Providers.

What is next?

As we have said many times over the years, well keep fighting for the open internet to ensure everyone has access to the entire internet and do everything in our power to protect net neutrality. In addition to our court challenge, we are also taking steps to ask Congress and the courts to fix the broken policies.

As a process note, the FCC decision made it clear that suits should be filed 10 days after it is published in the Federal Register, which has not yet occurred. However, federal law is more ambiguous. Due to the importance of this issue, even though we believe the filing date should be later, we filed in the event a court determines the appropriate date is today. The FCC or a court may accept this order or require us and others to refile at a later date. In fact, were urging them to use the later date. In either instance, we will continue to challenge the order in the courts.

What can you do?

It is imperative that all internet traffic be treated equally, without discrimination against content or type of traffic thats the how the internet was built and what has made it one of the greatest inventions of all time.

You can help by calling your elected officials and urge them to support an open internet. Net neutrality is not a partisan or U.S. issue and the decision to remove protections for net neutrality is the result of broken processes, broken politics, and broken policies. We need politicians to decide to protect users and innovation online rather than increase the power of a few large ISPs.

The post Mozilla Files Suit Against FCC to Protect Net Neutrality appeared first on The Mozilla Blog.


2. Mozilla and Sundance Film Festival Present: VR the People., 16 .[−]

On Monday January 22, Mozilla is bringing together a panel of the top VR industry insiders in the world to the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, to explain how VR storytelling is revolutionizing the film and entertainment industry.

“We want the storyteller’s vision to exceed the capacity of existing technology, to push boundaries, because then the technologist is inspired to engineer new mechanisms that enable things initially thought impossible” says Kamal Sinclair, Director of New Frontier Lab Programs at Sundance Institute. “However, this is not about creating something that appeals to people simply because of its novel technical achievements; rather it is something that has real meaning, and where that meaning can be realized by engineering the technologies to deliver the best experience possible.”

Mozilla selected the Sundance Film Festival as a destination because the Sundance Institute is a nonprofit organization that promotes artists in film, theatre, and new media to create and thrive. This is a perfect fit for Mozilla because both organizations are aligned with keeping creators first, especially within the Mixed Reality (VR & AR) space.

We want to empower artists to create immersive, impactful storytelling with ease and accessible tools. Its a part of our mission to ensure the internet is a global public resource, open and accessible to all,” said Sean White, Mozilla Senior Vice President of Emerging Technologies.

The all-star lineup includes Mozilla Senior Vice President of Emerging Technologies Sean White, founder and CEO of Emblematic Group Nonny de la Pe?a, Reggie Watts, and immersive director Chris Milk, CEO of WITHIN.

The panel will be moderated by Kamal Sinclair, Director of New Frontier Lab Programs at the Sundance Institute.

Attendees will also get to step inside an exclusive preview of an immersive volumtetric demonstration from immersive journalist Nonny de la Pe?a, as well as a special opportunity to deliver a powerful message about women in technology.

At Mozilla, our vision is an internet that truly puts people first, where individuals can shape their own experience and are empowered, safe and independent.

Our commitment to VR has been in the works for a while. Mozilla, the maker of Firefox, was the first browser to bring WebVR to the web browser in August of 2017. This created a fast lane for developers and artists to create web based VR experiences to browse with Firefox.

Please join Mozilla as we help creators use the web to the maximum of its potential to reach the world.

Mozilla and Sundance Film Festival Present: VR the People

Technology is often viewed as a barrier to immersive storytelling. Instead, it can be used to enhance, amplify, and simplify the creative process.

Join Mozilla at the Sundance Film Festival ClaimJumper building 3rd Floor as we explore how technology can be used to push the limits of storytelling

Our stellar lineup of speakers includes:

Mozilla Senior Vice President of Emerging Technologies Sean White,
Founder and CEO of Emblematic Group & Immersive Journalist Nonny de la Pe?a,
Reggie Watts,
CEO of WITHIN & Immersive Director Chris Milk,
and Moderator and Director, Kamal Sinclair New Frontier Lab Programs at Sundance Institute

Mon, January 22, 2018
Venue: Claim Jumper Court, 3rd Floor
12:00 PM 1:30 PM MST
Park City, UT 84060

About Mozilla

Mozilla is the not-for-profit behind the popular web browser, Firefox. We believe the Internet is a global public resource, open and accessible to all. We work to ensure it stays open by building products, technologies and programs that put people in control of their online lives, and contribute to a healthier Internet.

About Sundance Film Festival

Founded in 1981 by Robert Redford, Sundance Institute is a nonprofit organization that provides and preserves the space for artists in film, theatre, and new media to create and thrive. The Institute’s signature Labs, granting, and mentorship programs, dedicated to developing new work, take place throughout the year in the U.S. and internationally. The Sundance Film Festival and other public programs connect audiences to artists in igniting new ideas, discovering original voices, and building a community dedicated to independent storytelling. Sundance Institute has supported such projects as Boyhood, Swiss Army Man, Manchester By the Sea, Brooklyn, Little Miss Sunshine, Life, Animated, Sonita, 20 Feet From Stardom, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Fruitvale Station, Sin Nombre, The Invisible War, The Square, Dirty Wars, Spring Awakening, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder and Fun Home. Join Sundance Institute on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.

The post Mozilla and Sundance Film Festival Present: VR the People appeared first on The Mozilla Blog.


3. Plugging in on Policy., 21 . 2017[−]

Mozilla Tech Policy Fellows continue to lead policy conversations around the world.

When Mozilla rolled out a new fellowship focused on tech policy this past June, the goal was to gather some of the worlds top policymakers in tech to continue advancing the important initiatives they were working on in government as fellows with Mozilla.

We rounded up 10 fellows from the U.S., Brazil, India, and Kenya as part of the initial cohort. Fellows are spending the year keeping the Internet open and free both by furthering the crucial work they had already been leading, and by finding new ways to add to forward-thinking policy efforts.

Fellows are urging policymakers to keep net neutrality in the United States and to adopt it in India, theyre promoting data privacy and security in East Africa and Brazil, and theyre encouraging increased access to high-quality broadband in vulnerable communities in rural, urban, and tribal areas everywhere. The fellows have all described their work in depth on Mozillas network blog:

Alan Davidson is advancing policies and practices to support building the field of public interest technologists — the next generation of leaders with expertise in technology and public policy who we need to guide our society through coming challenges such as encryption, autonomous vehicles, blockchain, cybersecurity, and more.

Amina Fazlullah is exploring policies that will help lower the cost of broadband access, support broad adoption, ensure that applications are developed with the most vulnerable users in mind, promoting a fair and open Internet, and identifying and highlighting the good work of digital inclusion organizations around the world.

Camille Fischer worked on policies that support legal protections for privacy rights in the U.S. Camille completed her fellowship and recently joined the Electronic Frontier Foundation as a fellow working on free speech and government transparency.

Caroline Holland is working to promote competition for a healthy Internet to make sure consumers have access to affordable and competitive high speed broadband and equal access to the lawful content they desire.

Amba Kak is moving policies forward on net neutrality, zero rating and the open Internet in India, including supporting the countrys recent commitment to comprehensive net-neutrality protection.

— In East Africa, Linet Kwamboka is working to promote policies that support data protection and privacy as well as data literacy for the public.

Terah Lyons explored the global role of stakeholders from public, private, civil society, and academic stakeholder communities on AI policy to address issues related to ethics, accountability, the future of work, and safety and control. Terah recently completed her fellowship and joined the Partnership on AI as its first Executive Director.

–From Brazil, Mar?lia Monteiro is working to analyze tech policy issues from a consumer protection perspective to ensure that policy makers are balancing consumer interests with technology and innovation advances.

Jason Schultz is exploring AIs impact on open technologies including the need for new methods both to measure the negative impacts of AI closure and to adapt alternatives in meaningful technological, economic, and social ways.

Gigi Sohn is continuing her nearly 30-year fight for fast, fair, and open networks, including working to keep net neutrality in the U.S.

The Tech Policy Fellows gathered at MozFest, Mozillas annual festival for the open Internet movement, in October. They led workshops, roundtables, and panels, and — of course — met Foxy.

Mozilla Tech Policy Fellow Amina Fazlullah meets Foxy at MozFest.

Fellows are also contributing to the upcoming 2018 version of the Internet Health Report (you can get involved with that project, too!) and they are working closely with a dedicated Advisory Board, made up of seven top experts and supporters of a free and open Internet located in six different countries.

Mozilla will begin recruiting for a new cohort of fellows in 2018 — keep an eye out for our announcement and help us bring together even more amazing tech policy leaders to advance this crucial work.

The post Plugging in on Policy appeared first on The Mozilla Blog.


4. Firefox is Now on Amazon Fire TV Happy Holiday Watching., 20 . 2017[−]

Fast for good, just right for watching video at home

As many of us prepare to be with families and close friends for the holidays, I’m excited to announce that Mozilla is bringing the speed of Firefox and the power of the web onto the TV with an established family of streaming media devices, just in time for the holidays.

As of this morning we have shipped Firefox for Fire TV, a browser for discovering and watching web video on the big screen TV for users to install on their Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV stick. The app is now available on 2nd generation or newer devices in the Amazon Appstore for free, aimed at U.S. customers, but available for anyone else that wants to try.

Its a sign of the strength of Firefox Quantum that Amazon came to us looking for a partner who could bring more of the full web to its customers. The team came together to port, design and release a best-in-class application designed for the 10-foot, leanback experience and that makes watching videos as easy as clicking, searching or entering a URL. With this in-product application, we will be able to continue to drive our mission and reach existing and new users no matter what device theyre using.

Our goal is to make it easy for customers to access the broadest range of content in the world, said Marc Whitten, vice president, Amazon Fire TV and Appstore. Were excited to bring web browsing to customers on every Fire TV device in every country where were sold.

Especially on this wave of a successful release of Firefox Quantum, extending our top-notch browser experience into so many livingrooms was an opportunity too large to pass. It also gave us new avenues to deepen our relationships with consumers and extend our mission to an even wider audience.

We believe passionately that you should have the ability to get to watch what you want or view the web how you want to. So, if you already have a Fire TV, consider using Firefox for Fire TV. (And if you havent finished your holiday shopping, you might want to add a Fire TV to your list.)

We hope you enjoy this last minute holiday gift from us, and expect more to come from Firefox for this and our other platforms, as we strive to bring our users the best the web can offer, keeping it open and accessible to all.

The post Firefox is Now on Amazon Fire TV – Happy Holiday Watching appeared first on The Mozilla Blog.


5. Todays net neutrality vote an unsurprising, unfortunate disappointment., 14 . 2017[−]

We are incredibly disappointed that the FCC voted this morning – along partisan lines – to remove protections for the open internet. This is the result of broken processes, broken politics, and broken policies. As we have said over and over, we’ll keep fighting for the open internet, and hope that politicians decide to protect their constituents rather than increase the power of ISPs.

This fight isnt over. With our allies and our users, we will turn to Congress and the courts to fix the broken policies.

The partisan divide only exists in Washington. The internet is a global, public resource and if closed off — with only some content and services available unless you pay more to your ISP — the value of that resource declines. According to polls from earlier this year, American internet users agree. Three-quarters of the public support net neutrality. This isnt a partisan issue.

Well keep fighting. Were encouraged by net neutrality victories in India and elsewhere. Americans deserve and need better than this.

The post Todays net neutrality vote – an unsurprising, unfortunate disappointment appeared first on The Mozilla Blog.


6. Firefox Focus Adds Quick Access Without Sacrificing Users Privacy., 14 . 2017[−]

Its been a little over a year since we launched Firefox Focus. Weve had tremendous success since then, we launched in 27+ languages, launched on Android, and hit over 1 million downloads on Android within the first month of launch.

Today, were introducing a new feature: quicker access to your most visited sites, as well as the ability to add any search engine to your Focus app. They were the most requested items from our users and are aligned with our goals on what makes Focus so great.

We know our users want choice and miss the convenience of having their favorite websites and search engines at their fingertips, but they dont want to sacrifice their privacy. Since the moment weve built Focus, our goal has been to get our users quickly to the information and sites all while keeping their data safe from unwanted targeting.

We all have our popular go-to sites that we visit regularly — whether its checking the latest news on your favorite news site or checking the scores of your beloved sports team. Now, you can add the sites you visit frequently to your personal autocomplete list within the app. This means that only you can see the sites URL in this list. So, when youre ready to check your favorite sports teams scores, you simply type in a couple letters and autocomplete will finish the job.

Autocomplete on Android (Left) and iOS (Right)

Check it out here:

Theres also something new for users where they can add search engines from any site that has a search field. If you want to search from somewhere outside our list of suggested search engines, go ahead and add it! For example, if you want to see a movie this weekend but dont want to waste hours on a bad movie, you can check rottentomatoes.com. We know that choice is important to our power users so this new function allows them to set up their preferred way for searching the web.

One of the reasons users love Focus is because of the faster load times due to our auto-blocking of ads and trackers. It quickly gets you to the places where you want to go and sets us apart from other browsers. We built Focus as the quickest and easiest privacy browser built with you in mind.

The latest version of Firefox Focus can be downloaded on Google Play and in the App Store.

The post Firefox Focus Adds Quick Access Without Sacrificing Users Privacy appeared first on The Mozilla Blog.


7. Mozilla Joins Net Neutrality Blackout for Break the Internet Day., 12 . 2017[−]

Today, Mozilla.org is blacked out to support net neutrality.

Were joining with others across the web from Github and Reddit to Etsy and Imgur for a Break the Internet Day of Action. The idea: to show how broadly we all value an open internet. And to ask Americans to call their members of Congress and urge them to stop the FCC’s plan to end net neutrality.

In two days, the FCC will vote on a order that would gut current net neutrality protections, allowing internet service providers (ISPs) to create fast lanes and slow lanes online. ISPs like Verizon and AT&T would be able to block, throttle, and prioritize internet access for all Americans.

Says Ashley Boyd, Mozillas VP of Advocacy: Right now, ISPs cant discriminate between the different websites where Americans shop, socialize, and read the news. But without net neutrality, Americans favorite online services, marketplaces, or news websites could load far slower or not at all.

Says Denelle Dixon, Mozillas Chief Business and Legal Officer: Net neutrality is about free speech, competition, and innovation. If the FCC votes to roll back net neutrality, the decision would harm every day internet users and small businesses and end the internet as we know it.

Net neutrality is something we can all agree on: our recent public opinion poll shows overwhelming support across party lines for net neutrality, with over three quarters of Americans (76%) supporting net neutrality.


Mozilla is a nonprofit committed to net neutrality and a healthy internet for all. If you are seeking additional ways to help, a donation to Mozilla allows us to continue our work.

The post Mozilla Joins Net Neutrality Blackout for Break the Internet Day appeared first on The Mozilla Blog.


8. Early Returns on Firefox Quantum Point to Growth., 12 . 2017[−]

When we set out to launch Firefox Quantum earlier this year, we knew we had a hugely improved product. It not only felt faster — with a look and feel that tested off the charts — it was measurably faster. Thanks to multiple changes under the hood, we doubled Firefoxs speed while using 30% less memory than Chrome.

In less than a month, Firefox Quantum has already been installed by over 170M people around the world. Were just getting started and early returns are super encouraging.

Heres a look at the top initial indicators we are seeing for Firefox Quantum since our launch:

  1. Our biggest release to date. Firefox Quantum is Firefoxs fastest path to 100M+ profiles and half a billion daily hours of use on a new release in recent memory – a product of both seamless release and strong uptick in new profiles. And, millions of users are still getting their first introduction to Firefox Quantum every day.
  2. More users are coming from Chrome. Weve seen a 44% growth in downloads from people who are using the Chrome browser compared to the same time last year.
  3. Mobile is growing too. Our four core mobile apps are experiencing strong growth resulting from the launch of Firefox Quantum. Firefox for iOS and Android has shown a 24% lift in installs, and Firefox Focus for Android and iOS showed a 48% lift in installs.
  4. The Add-ons ecosystem remains strong. Over 1,000 Firefox Quantum-ready extensions have been added to addons.mozilla.org since Firefox Quantum was released.
  5. Screenshots is a breakout hit. Its seeing very strong early traction. Users have taken over 30 million screenshots since the feature launched in late September.
  6. Developer Support for Firefox Quantum: Improved browser speed and stability, as well as high quality developer tools are giving developers more reasons to try and continue to use Firefox developer tools. Since the September 26th developer edition of Firefox Quantum was released, we saw a 10% increase in daily use of developer tools and a 53% increase in Developer edition downloads.

Heres what the world is saying about Firefox Quantum:

7. Social media Is buzzing. While the fun part was reading what new users had to say, the data also showed a significant positive shift in sentiment across Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, Tumblr, YouTube, and blogs. (Source: Crimson Hexagon social media analytics)

8. Our Ads are taking off. We took a unique approach to marketing the new Firefox browser, where we focused on what it feels like and even sounds like to use our blazingly fast new browser. They came to life in television spots and promoted videos with our Wait Face and Reggie Watts video which, combined, had more than half a billion impressions, and a third of those views are from start to finish.

9. Firefox in the news. Weve received an overwhelming amount of positive coverage for the new Firefox browser. Weve seen hundreds of headlines across the globe from Wireds Ciao, Chrome: Firefox Quantum Is The Browser Built for 2017, to El Pais Firefox wants to reinvent browsers with Quantum and Usbek & Ricas Firefox Quantum: Were back.

Were incredibly heartened by the positive response since the launch. Well continue to watch these numbers, and plan to check back in the new year with an update!

The post Early Returns on Firefox Quantum Point to Growth appeared first on The Mozilla Blog.


9. Mozilla Awards Research Grants to Fund Top Research Projects., 08 . 2017[−]

We are happy to announce the results of the Mozilla Research Grant program for the second half of 2017. This was a competitive process, with over 70 applicants. After three rounds of judging, we selected a total of fourteen proposals, ranging from building tools to support open web platform projects like Rust and WebAssembly to designing digital assistants for low- and middle- income families and exploring decentralized web projects in the Orkney Islands. All these projects support Mozillas mission to make the Internet safer, more empowering, and more accessible.

The Mozilla Research Grants program is part of Mozillas Emerging Technologies commitment to being a world-class example of inclusive innovation and impact culture-and reflects Mozillas commitment to open innovation, continuously exploring new possibilities with and for diverse communities.

Zhendong Su University of California, Davis Practical, Rigorous Testing of the Mozilla Rust and bindgen Compilers
Ross Tate Cornell University Inferable Typed WebAssembly
Laura Watts IT University of Copenhagen Shaping community-based managed services (‘Orkney Cloud Saga’)
Svetlana Yarosh University of Minnesota Children & Parent Using Speech Interfaces for Informational Queries
Serge Egelman UC Berkeley / International Computer Science Institute Towards Usable IoT Access Controls in the Home
Alexis Hiniker University of Washington Understanding Design Opportunities for In-Home Digital Assistants for Low- and Middle-Income Families
Blase Ur University of Chicago Improving Communication About Privacy in Web Browsers
Wendy Ju Cornell Tech Video Data Corpus of People Reacting to Chatbot Answers to Enable Error Recognition and Repair
Katherine Isbister University of California Santa Cruz Designing for VR Publics: Creating the right interaction infrastructure for pro-social connection, privacy, inclusivity, and co-mingling in social VR
Sanjeev Arora Princeton University and the Institute for Advanced Study Compact representations of meaning of natural language: Toward a rigorous and interpretable study
Rachel Cummings Georgia Tech Differentially Private Analysis of Growing Datasets
Tongping Liu University of Texas at San Antonio Guarder: Defending Heap Vulnerabilities with Flexible Guarantee and Better Performance

The Mozilla Foundation will also be providing grants in support of two additional proposals:

J. Nathan Matias CivilServant, incubated by Global Voices Preventing online harassment with Community A/B Test Systems
Donghee Yvette Wohn New Jersey Institute of Technology Dealing with Harassment: Moderation Practices of Female and LGBT Live Streamers

Congratulations to all successfully funded applicants! The 2018H1 round of grant proposals will open in the Spring; more information is available at https://research.mozilla.org/research-grants/.

Jofish Kaye, Principal Research Scientist, Emerging Technologies, Mozilla

The post Mozilla Awards Research Grants to Fund Top Research Projects appeared first on The Mozilla Blog.


10. Mozilla is Funding Art About Online Privacy and Security., 07 . 2017[−]

Mozillas Creative Media Grants support art and artists raising awareness about surveillance, tracking, and hacking

La convocatoria para solicitudes est? disponible en Espa?ol aqu?

The Mozilla Manifesto states that Individuals security and privacy on the Internet are fundamental and must not be treated as optional.

Today, Mozilla is seeking artists, media producers, and storytellers who share that belief and who use their art to make a difference.

Mozillas Creative Media Grants program is now accepting submissions. The program awards grants ranging from $10,000 to $35,000 for films, apps, storytelling, and other forms of media that explore topics like mass surveillance and the erosion of online privacy.

What were looking for

We seek to support producers creating work on the web, about the web, and for a broad public. Producers should share Mozillas concern that the private communications of internet citizens are increasingly being monitored and monetized by state and corporate actors.

As we move to an era of ubiquitous and connected digital technology, Mozilla sees a vital role for media produced in the public interest that advocates for internet citizens being informed, empowered and in control of their digital lives.

Imagine: An open-source browser extension that reveals how much Facebook really knows about you. Or artwork and journalism that examine how womens personal data is tracked and commodified online.

(These are real projects, created by artists who now receive Mozilla Creative Media grants. Learn more about Data Selfie and Chupadados.)

The audiences for this work should be primarily in Europe and Latin America.

While this does not preclude makers from other regions from applying, content and approach must be relevant to one of these two regions.

How to apply

To apply, download the application guide.

Lee la descripci?n del proyecto en Espa?ol aqu?.

All applications must be in English, and applicants are encouraged to read the application guide. Applications will be open until Midnight Pacific time December 31st, 2017. Applications will be reviewed January 2018.

The post Mozilla is Funding Art About Online Privacy and Security appeared first on The Mozilla Blog.



 
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