The Mozilla Foundation has suspended cryptocurrency donations following a community backlash sparked by sharp criticism from co-founder Jamie Zawinski.
Last week, the developer company behind the Firefox browser tweeted a call for donations in cryptocurrency.
But today Mozilla announced that it has paused crypto donations due to the online discussion about the environmental impact of crypto.
Last week we posted a Twitter reminder that Mozilla accepts cryptocurrency donations. This led to an important discussion about the environmental impact of cryptocurrencies. We listen and act. 1/4
– Mozilla (@mozilla) January 6, 2022
Mozilla said it will continue to research decentralized web technology but will only resume crypto donations if it is in line with its climate goals. In the spirit of open source, Mozilla will be transparent in the review process and share constant updates.
The drama began on December 31st when the organization launched a call for donations in cryptocurrency through the BitPay platform.
The nonprofit’s contribution was met with opposition from some members of its community, including Mozilla co-founder Jamie Zawinski. Although he has not been associated with Mozilla since 2000, he strongly criticized the organization:
“Everyone involved in the project should be ashamed of making this decision to partner with planet-scorching Ponzi grabs.”
On a blog posted on his website on Jan. 5, Zawinski continued speaking about the cryptocurrency industry, arguing that its business model was unrealistic. Zawinski argues that industry creates pollution and turns it into money.
Some members of the community urged Mozilla to delete its appeal for donations and explain how the adoption of crypto aligns with its mission to fight the ongoing climate crisis.
Some community members pointed to a corporate blog about the organization’s climate commitments on January 21 last year, quoting CEO Mitchell Baker about Mozilla’s and his commitment to protecting the environment and tackling the climate crisis.
According to the New York Times, bitcoin mining uses more than 91 terawatt hours of electricity per year – nearly 0.5% of global electricity consumption per year.
Mozilla is just the latest high profile example facing the wrath of some users after making announcements about crypto and NFT. In the past few months, Ubisoft, Square Enix, Kickstarter, and Discord have come under fire for the environmental impact of mining and stated concerns about crypto scams and fraud.
Popular video game company Square Enix was criticized by gamers on social media when President Yosuke Matsuda showed his appreciation for blockchain games, NFTs, and the Metaverse over the weekend. On the other hand, money speaks louder than keyboard warriors and his comments resulted in a price gain of 8%.
Related: The new LGBTQ token aims at justice, but hits red flags with the community
Gaming giant Ubisoft was harshly criticized by its users when it announced the introduction of NFTs in the game on December 7th. Despite significant backlash, Ubisoft will continue its initiative in the form of dynamic NFTs with Aleph.im.
Also in early December, Kickstarter announced plans to develop a decentralized crowdfunding platform. Some users threatened to abandon the platform due to the environmental impact of crypto.
On November 9, Discord CEO Jason Citron shared a tweet signaling the company’s intention to allow users to connect a crypto wallet to their accounts. Users raised their concerns and discussed the energy expended processing blockchain transactions and the potential for money laundering and fraud in crypto and NFTs.
Just two days after the tweet was posted, Citron went back and said the company has no current plans to integrate Web 3.0 concepts and is determined to protect its users from fraud, spam, and fraud.