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Friday, June 20, 2008

By the way

Someone commented on my previous editorial that they felt bad for me because of the response I was getting from people who are now telling me how stupid I am and how much they hate me. He went on to mention the fact that, for the past year and a half, I created themes on my own time while working as a high school teacher making no money (over the past five years) while having to deal with "jackasses" all the time. They often felt compelled to tell me how much they hated me and how stupid I am. All this while I had a Master's degree and they didn't know how to add fractions.

Another person commented that they did not know this about me. This is true, and I find it quite funny and ironic. I was teaching for no money and donated my time and ability for free to the Firefox Community for over a year while I created themes for Firefox 2. Now, I am no longer teaching and I am creating themes full time. I decided that, due to the time and energy that goes into creating and maintaining themes, I would offer my free basic version and my $0.99 version. This idea was welcomed by a bunch of people telling me that I should do this for free, telling me how stupid I am and telling me how much they hated me, all while they refuse to look at the actual General Public License for open source software and the actual definition of open source software which I provided in my editorial.

I guess not much has changed, I still have people telling me how stupid I am and how much they hate me while trying to pirate my software by uploading it to other sites. I guess there is one difference, they are demanding that I work for free while they call me names. At least with teaching I could call in sick and have a substitute.


Manis said...

The Abstract classic 3.0.1 is messed up in the "organize bookmarks" view. The forward/back buttons do not show in full.
Thought you should know.

Wet Coaster said...

You're not stupid....just greedy.

John said...

Great job on your themes! When I saw that you were charging for a premium version of Aero Fox i thought the $0.99 price was more than fair. Another themer charges more than that for one of his themes and it's well worth it also.

I'm the creator of the BloodFire theme for Firefox. While I choose not to charge for my theme, I certainly can see why you would want to. I am trying to get my theme up to standard for Firefox 3.0, and there is a lot of work to be done. What I don't understand is why people get so bent out of shape over having to pay for a theme. They have the choice of either using it or not. If it bothers you to pay a (very) small fee, then don't use it. Simple as that. But don't dog the creator because they want a (small) something in return for all of their hard work.

Keep the faith and keep up all of your hard work. Themers understand.

Wombat Queen™ said...

You know, the way reviewers at the Addons page were having a conniption about paying, I was under the impression you were charging 25 bucks or something. A buck? Give me a break. All these whiners pay 5 times that every day to get bad breath and annoying personalities at Starbucks.

My husband and I have always supported games, programs and indie music by paying or donating. This is the honorable thing to do in supporting fellow techies. The people whining at you from the comfort and anonymity of their computer screens are the ones that are greedy.

And as someone who has dipped their big toe into coding and programming, I know it's hard to design something like this. Open source does not mean sprinkled with fairy dust and poof it's suddenly appears.

I absolutely love this theme because as soon as I started using it about 5 months ago my headaches while online stopped. It looks wonderful in FF3 too. I'm epileptic, so anything that reduces glare is a big deal for me. Yeah, I think I can spare a whole dollar. Good grief.. :P Good luck in all you do...

Anonymous said...

I think the point here is if every author charged a buck for every add on and for every theme what would we have? first, its open source so everyone can also help each other when writing these themes. Mozilla is free and add on's and themes are free. Its why FF3 is so great.. Its why 10 million downloads in a day. If this author feels his work deserves to be paid for.. then The rest of the authors should be compensated as well. This has always been a community effort. This author seems bitter and brings up personal issues as being a teacher.. which has nothing to do with FF and themes. People have always done this as a hobby.. Its no secret about this fact. I agree this guy can write software and charge money.. But for petes sakes the community driven mozilla is the wrong place for his efforts. Its obviously not a hobby for this guy and he needs to move on.

As for those that do support this author and his decision for a pay model. I really don't think they understand how that can undermine the community efforts. If the core principles shift from the community to individuals and pay models, I can assure you FF will die. If every theme add on and FF itself charged money, then it would die a fast death.

Wet Coaster said...


Thanks for your comment. That is my sentiment exactly. I have 1st hand knowledge because I have contributed many many hours to assist developers of themes and extensions for.....free. In fact I assisted this developer who BTW "took over" the Abstract theme from Zachery Drovel (which I helped by extensively testing for him) and hem "modified" it and is now charging for it. You see where this is going?

If BO wants to develop themes and extensions for profit then I say stay off AMO. Also if everyone goes this route then clearly it will be the end of Firefox. Have a look at IE7 and it's extensions. They are all for sale and are crap.

FF is a community project.

Samurai Chan said...

I think those people are full of Bull Sh!T. You know, you do people a service with your wonderful themes and than they star getting mad because you charge a little. Screw'em!! Keep up the great work and don't let those fools get to you! Samurai Chan - P.S. The Crimson and Black fan

iSafari said...


I feel bad for you, Brett. I've made a theme before, and I know how difficult it is. It got to the point where I couldn't keep on making themes for free, so I made a donation page. Almost a month after I put up the donation page, I had received ONE donation.

This is why I decided to discontinue iSafari [Leopard], which was a popular theme.

I totally understand why you are now charging for your theme. I think it's totally fair. You are not stupid, and you are not greedy. You have great skill and talent with CSS and coding.

To all the people who are bashing Brett and calling him greedy and stupid: GO AND MAKE A THEME YOURSELF! It's not easy at all.