The entire drama began when Verizon (which owns Mozilla) filed a complaint against Mozilla for changing the default search engine to Google while Yahoo was supposed to be at that place as per the pact between both the companies. And in the eyes of Mozilla, that was grounds to terminate the agreement. Half way through this, Mozilla terminated the deal and resorted to using Google as the default search provider for Firefox.
Writing yesterday on the Mozilla blog, chief business and legal officer Denelle Dixon said her organization chose to terminate its agreement with Yahoo/Oath based on a number of factors, including doing what's best for the brand, its effort to provide quality Web search, and the broader content experience for its users. ". has suffered and will continue to suffer competitive injury to its business and reputation, among other harm, and Mozilla's material breaches and bad-faith conduct are a substantial factor in causing such harm". Mozilla hit back on December 5 with a cross-complaint arguing that it was protecting its rights to enforce the contract. With the overwhelming response, Mozilla surprised its users by changing its longtime default engine from Yahoo to Google. As a result, the stakes are pretty high for this one.
Though disgraced ex-C.E.O. Marissa Mayerparted ways with Yahoo six months ago, her legacy continues to plague what's left of the tech giant. Over the past year, Yahoo has gradually revealed details of a massive hack of its systems, which Yahoo now says affected all 3 billion of its users. Altaba, which retained the parts of Yahoo's business Verizon didn't buy, chiefly holdings in other Internet companies, is not involved in the dispute.
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The former Yahoo business, along with AOL, was rebranded as Oath. In turn, Yahoo is also suing Mozilla, claiming that their contract was terminated incorrectly.
Then, a few hours later, Mozilla counter-sued.
We will create a wiki page with links to relevant public court documents - over time we expect to add more content as it becomes public.
Before taking to court, Oath explains that it tried to make amends with Mozilla by asking it to "take immediate steps to cure its breaches and rescind its termination notice". In the end, Mozilla concluded that sticking with Yahoo would have had a "negative impact".
We recently exercised our contractual right to terminate our agreement with Yahoo based on a number of factors including doing what's best for our brand, our effort to provide quality web search, and the broader content experience for our users.
Mozilla legal head Denelle Dixon continued, "Immediately following Yahoo's acquisition, we undertook a lengthy, multi-month process to seek assurances from Yahoo and its acquirers with respect to those factors". The company also says that the original deal obligates Yahoo to continue to make annual payments to Mozilla, even though Yahoo is no longer the default search engine.
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