Web browser choice matters

Our lives are full of choices. Where to eat? What to read? Who to spend time with?

The choices we make determine the quality of our life, and how we see the world. So many of these choices we take quite seriously, weighing the consequences, thinking about the implications, and choosing carefully and thoughtfully.

So it’s strange, then, that the majority of people in the world haven’t ever considered the Web browser on their computer or mobile phone — that so many people every day use the browser that comes by default.

It’s an important choice because the Web browser has become one of the most critical and trusted relationships of our modern lives – with nearly perfect knowledge of everything we do. It is the lens through which we look at the virtual world, and the medium by which we connect, learn, share, and collaborate. The browser you choose is responsible for providing you with the necessary tools to manage your online life, and to protect your privacy and security.

And so we’re pleased to support the European Commission and Microsoft in also recognizing how important choice is. In accordance with a landmark settlement, if you’re using a Windows PC in Europe and you’re still using the default Web browser, in the coming weeks and months you’ll see a Browser Choice screen appear. That screen will provide you the opportunity to make an active choice in the source of the software that acts on your behalf to broker your online experiences, and meet your own unique needs and interests.

As an international non-profit organization, Mozilla has always believed that the freedom to make smart choices should be central to making the Web, and the world, a better place. This shows through with Mozilla Firefox, a free, open-source Web browser that more than 350 million people around the world have chosen to use every day. Values of choice and self-determination are built into everything that we do, including Firefox.

We believe that the Browser Choice screen is an important milestone towards helping more people take control of their online lives — and we hope for the conversation to become broader and deeper. We’ve set up opentochoice.org as one place for you to discuss what this choice means to you — and we hope that you’ll add your own voice to this conversation and those to come.

Whether or not you decide to keep your current Web browser, we encourage you to learn more about your browser and the impacts it has on the way you see the world, and to make your own choice.

Mitchell Baker, Mozilla Chair & John Lilly, Mozilla CEO


2 thoughts on “Web browser choice matters”

  1. Most people don’t choose an OS let alone a webbrowser. And when asked they don’t know what the difference would be. They are glad they can use the internet right now and are afraid they have to learn it all over again which they would hate with a passion.
    You should make videos how people use Firefox. I like to have a lot of screen space, color tabs, a downloadmanager button and use session restore so I can always resume what I was doing. This configuration should be available next to the video which the user can install and try. Of course they should always be able to go back once they have tried it.

  2. “when asked they don’t know what the difference would be”
    Well, that has changed quite a bit over the past 5 years thanks to Mozilla. People are much more aware of what a web browser is than ever before thanks to Firefox, and the new high visibility and competition between browsers.
    Granted, a lot of people still think that Google is a web browser, but more often than not, someone will correct them and educate them.

    “They are glad they can use the internet right now” true,

    “and are afraid they have to learn it all over again”
    Not afraid, just lazy and unwilling.
    They constantly learn, interact with, and use new software, new technologies, new web apps, and web services.
    They’ll have to learn the new OS (or changes to it) on the new PC that they just purchased too.

    “Our lives are full of choices.”
    Where to eat?
    On my futon in front of my TV
    What to read?
    Only things that are on my monitor.
    Ok, and sometimes things written on restroom walls. But I never call the phone numbers!
    Who to spend time with?
    The voices in my head 😐

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