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Why OKCupid Is Wishing Mozilla 'Nothing but Failure'


The dating site is taking a stand against Mozilla's new appointment of Brendan Eich as CEO.

OKCupid, the dating website owned by IAC/InterActiveCorp (NASDAQ:IACI), has launched an exceptional product boycott. The issue at hand  isn't what's remarkable. As far as 21st century social activism goes, it's the stuff of your conventional protest. The big difference here is who's initiating the movement, and by what means.
The latest commercial backlash in the fight for marriage equality isn't coming from advocacy groups or individual consumers but rather another commercial enterprise: OKCupid is taking a stand against Mozilla's new appointment of Brendan Eich as CEO for his past support of California's Proposition 8. To make its point about Eich, OKCupid is asking its members not to use Mozilla's Firefox Web browser. A statement on the OKCupid home page tells of Eich's $1,000 donation in 2008 to the campaign to ban gay marriage while serving up a heaping of red meat: "Those who seek to deny love and instead enforce misery, shame, and frustration are our enemies," the message reads, "and we wish them nothing but failure."
Members bent on using Firefox to access the main OKCupid site can still do so via a link at the bottom of the page, but not before first seeing their options in download links to four other major browsers.
Here is the full-text of the OKCupid letter:

Hello there, Mozilla Firefox user. Pardon this interruption of your OkCupid experience.

Mozilla's new CEO, Brendan Eich, is an opponent of equal rights for gay couples. We would therefore prefer that our users not use Mozilla software to access OkCupid.

Politics is normally not the business of a website, and we all know there's a lot more wrong with the world than misguided CEOs. So you might wonder why we're asserting ourselves today. This is why: we've devoted the last ten years to bringing people-all people-together. If individuals like Mr. Eich had their way, then roughly 8% of the relationships we've worked so hard to bring about would be illegal. Equality for gay relationships is personally important to many of us here at OkCupid. But it's professionally important to the entire company. OkCupid is for creating love. Those who seek to deny love and instead enforce misery, shame, and frustration are our enemies, and we wish them nothing but failure.

Professionally speaking, Eich's elevation to the top position at Mozilla from chief technology officer seems like a natural corporate-ladder climb. His social views, on the other hand, make him the glaring thing-that's-not-like-the-others among leaders in his industry.

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), and Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) are but a few of the tech companies that denounced bills like Prop 8 and argued in a brief issued to the Supreme Court last February that the Defense of Marriage Act be overturned.
It's unclear whether Eich will evolve his position -- at least publicly -- on marriage equality, but it'll certainly be interesting to see if OKCupid's campaign successfully flips the petition, so to speak, with its company vs. company boycott.
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