I’m an equal opportunity critic of bad decisions, regardless of whether they’re coming from an open source or closed source purveyor.

A few weeks back I wrote that the IE8 “Get the Facts” campaign gets it wrong by showing little respect for the target audience’s intelligence.  Today, I’m calling out Mozilla for needlessly playing the “Get the facts” game (or “See How we Stack Up” in Mozilla speak).

Someone at Mozilla wants me to believe that Firefox is so much better than IE that Firefox leads 6 to 1 in the “handy browser comparison chart”.  I don’t disagree that Firefox leads in the items that Mozilla included in the comparison.  But if Firefox didn’t lead in “Thousands of free way to personalize your online experience”, Mozilla would not have put that item on the comparison table.

Does this comparison really help someone evaluating which browser to download and use?  Absolutely not. Product comparisons are better left to a third party that will include criteria important to users, not simply criteria that the owning vendor’s product is best at.

This is a waste of time, both for employees of Mozilla and Microsoft and for anyone who has stumbles across these “comparisons”.

I don’t know why, but I would have expected Mozilla to take the high road in this comparison game.

Far from resting on the success of FF 3.0, the team is looking well into the future and asking what you’d like to see from your next generation browser.  From the folks at Mozilla:

“Today we’re calling on industry, higher education and people from around the world to get involved and share their ideas and expertise as we collectively explore and design future directions for the Web.

You don’t have to be a software engineer to get involved, and you don’t have to program. Everyone is welcome to participate. We’re particularly interested in engaging with designers who have not typically been involved with open source projects.”

Very cool to see Mozilla expanding the aperture of open source participation.  Even cooler that the concepts being displayed are truly innovative.  This isn’t about re-implementing a pre-existing feature in a competing browser.  It’s about innovation that, when you see the feature in action, it’s truly intuitive and you want to get the feature now! ;-)

Head on over to the Mozilla Labs blog and watch the videos.  The Aurora Concept totally rocks.  Actually, all three concepts are very cool.

Well done Mozilla et al!