Mozilla founder forces ‘PR disaster’ over crypto, laments ‘coinsplainers’
The Mozilla Foundation has temporarily stopped supporters from donating with Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies after blowback from the project’s co-founder, reported Bloomberg last week.
Responding to a New-Years-Eve tweet from Mozilla that encouraged Bitcoin, Ether, and Dogecoin donations, co-founder Jamie Zawinski made no bones about his distaste for crypto (mostly environmental concerns).
“Everyone involved in the project should be witheringly ashamed of this decision to partner with planet-incinerating Ponzi grifters,” wrote Zawinski.
The San Franciscan tech firm behind the open-source web browser Firefox quickly announced a review of its policy on cryptocurrency.
The Mozilla Foundation has dabbled in Bitcoin since 2014, when it started accepting BTC donations. The Foundation would immediately sell donated Bitcoin for US dollars via a partnership with crypto exchange Coinbase.
However, a more recent deal with payment processor BitPay (which also sells crypto on behalf of its clients) incited a fresh wave of criticism from Twitter users.
Mozilla founder tries to auto-block Ethereum fans
Zawinski actually left Mozilla in 1999 and has since had little to do with the project. Still, his opinion seems to carry weight with fans of open-source.
The American programmer — who also helped develop ’90s browser Netscape — said he intentionally incited a PR disaster to pressure Mozilla into reconsidering its crypto policies.
“Cryptocurrencies are not only an apocalyptic ecological disaster, and a greater-fool pyramid scheme, but are also incredibly toxic to the open web, another ideal that Mozilla used to support,” Zawinski wrote in his blog under the title Mozilla Blinked.
“So I hope that after they ‘conduct their review,’ the conclusion they reach is the obvious one: Bury it in the desert. Wear gloves,” he added, referencing this XKCD comic strip.
Aside from concern-trolling about Proof-of-Work’s energy consumption, Zawinski regularly tells his readers that crypto is a scam.
Ultimately, Zawinski sees little value in crypto. A blog post this week titled: How The Crypto Bros Have Fallen laments that the “only thing you can do with [crypto] is pay ransom after your computer was hacked! You can’t even use it to buy porn!”
While Zawinski is categorically wrong about that (you can absolutely buy adult content with Bitcoin), Zawinski added more rhetoric with another blog post on Sunday.
Read more: [Take-Two CEO: Crypto and the metaverse probably won’t matter in 5 years]
“In the last week, I have been referred to as ‘Daddy’ more times than ever before in my life. And apparently I’m a ‘boomer’ now. I’ve also been told that my blog is a psyop to protect the dollar,” he wrote (our emphasis).
Zawinski noted the top response was “do your research,’ which he’s deemed the “rallying cry of cryptobros.”
“The coinsplainers just cannot fathom that someone wouldn’t want to sell Amway with them. You must Just Not Get It, that’s the only explanation,” said Zawinski.
Zawinski then decried Twitter’s moderation policies, reckoning the platform should’ve done more to protect him from the “cryptobros.”
For what it’s worth, the other Mozilla co-founder, Brendan Eich, now runs crypto-focused web browser Brave.
Eich stepped down from Mozilla in 2014 due to mounting criticism of his $1,000 donation to a political campaign that sought to ban gay marriage in California.
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