Mozilla CEO quits amid employees’ protest over 2008 donation to CA gay marriage ban campaign

Windsor Genova – Fourth Estate Cooperative Contributor

Mountain View, CA, United States (4E) – Mozilla co-founder Brendan Eich resigned as CEO Wednesday, just 11 days after assuming the post amid employees’ protest over his appointment and criticisms for his donation to the 2008 campaign banning gay marriage in California.

The non-profit company that developed the Internet browser Mozilla Firefox announced Eich’s resignation in a blog post.

“Brendan Eich has chosen to step down from his role as CEO. He’s made this decision for Mozilla and our community,” said Mozilla website executive chairwoman Mitchell Baker, according to ABC News.

Eich’s replacement is still being discussed by the company, Baker said.

Eich co-developed Mozilla in 1998 and developed JavaScript, a computer programming language commonly used in web browsers and development of online games and mobile apps.

Eich’s appointment as CEO on March 24 was met with employees’ protest and three company directors resigned. The free online dating website OKCupid joined the protest by refusing to allow users to run the dating website with the Firefox browser. On Wednesday, it ended its boycott and welcome Eich’s resignation saying it affirms Mozilla’s commitment to equal rights for all individuals and partnerships.

Eich had admitted in a personal blog post addressing employees on March 26 that he was aware of concerns about his commitment to fostering equality and welcome for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) individuals at Mozilla. He allayed the concern saying the company emphasized equal health benefits to all domestic partners across the country.

The concern was related to Eich’s $1,000 donation for the Proposition 8 ballot measure that passed in the November 2008 state election. The proposal, which bans gay marriage in California, was overturned by the Supreme Court last year.

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