Australis launch week starts Tuesday, April 29th!



Firefox 29 (Australis) will be launching on Tuesday so it is the perfect time to organize an Australis launch week! We’ll be answering questions in the support forum and helping each other in #sumo on IRC  from Tuesday, April 29th to Friday, May 2nd.

Join us, create an account and then take some time this week to help with unanswered questions. Please check the launch etherpad for additional tips. We’re expecting a high number of questions this week and our goal is to respond to each one of them, so please try to answer as many questions as you can throughout the following days.

Let’s do it!

“Top 100″: the SUMO localization challenge!

Over the years our localizers have been supporting SUMO in all of it’s efforts to provide information and help for every user and every problem. Since SUMO has been growing constantly it seem very daunting (although not impossible) to maintain all articles up to date.


Recently we have added some new products and some other might get added soon. So we want to make sure that you can focus on what’s most important and provided the needed help for the users in your locale. For this we want locales to focus on translating and maintaining the Top 100 articles up to date.


By focusing on the Top 100 articles you are helping close to 95% of the users seeking help and your efforts go to articles that actually get a lot of views. I have talked to some localizers and they think that focusing on “only” 100 articles seems much more doable and it’s something that localizers can commit to. Also, if you have a support forum for those 5% users with an edge case that is the best place to get help.
How will this work?
To make it easier we will do some changes:
  • New progress bar for the Top 100 articles (bug filed, waiting to be implemented)
  • New “Top 100″ historical graph with all the other metrics (bug filed, waiting to be implemented)
  • Reviewer digest: we realized that in many cases the reviewers weren’t getting back to the articles, so we will be sending them a weekly digest with the articles that are waiting to be reviewed (bug filed, waiting to be implemented)
  • With the current L10n dashboard the articles with the highst visits go on the top, so just working your way from the top of the list is the way to go
We really hope that this change will help you focus on the articles that matter the most for users, so that you know for sure that your time is well spent. We would of course love and welcome if you would translate more than the Top 100, but we want to set a goal that makes sense and gets you motivated. Because 100 articles is actually reachable!


We will still want to have articles localized for special occasions: like the launch of Firefox OS. So apart form the Top 100 articles we might ask you to help us with other articles. But that’s because it will be very exciting : )


I hope you are as excited as we are about these new changes. Now we just need to rally around one simple goal. So, do you take the challenge?


Let us know if you want to be part of this challenge or if you have any thoughts around this on the l10n forum!


(Thanks Jan B for the art work : )

Localization of SUMO: focusing on our active locales



Providing localized support has always been one of the core purposes of SUMO and we’re very proud to be able to reach 85% of our users in their native or preferred language! We are constantly trying to improve the experience for our localizers and users and by assessing data from last year we came to the conclusion that we could do a couple of changes to provide a much better experience for our SUMO users.




We think that focusing the efforts of the community in the languages that are being translated and have an active community is the best way to help users. This means that we want to encourage inactive communities to take a different approach for helping users.




Although we would love to provide support even in Klingon, the reality is that if we don’t have an active community who can help translate all content into Klingon, users end up in a page they don’t understand and most importantly: a page that doesn’t help. So we’re actually not providing a good experience. We want everyone that comes to SUMO actually finding help. And a page that is only partially translated or has outdated content is more frustrating than saying upfront that we don’t translate to their language.


Also asking community members to translate long and difficult articles that might not be read by anyone is a waste of their time and efforts, so we rather have you doing fun and rewarding activities.




The way we want to approach this is to suspend the SUMO locales that have little traffic AND aren’t active. This means that almost no users will be impacted, since the locales have already little traffic and are anyway almost empty. We hope that this will help our contributors to focus better on more impactful activities at Mozilla and SUMO.


Wait, what happens to the locales that go away? Project F+F!


We want to support every locale that has an active community willing to help users. So don’t worry, we’re not closing down SUMO for anyone. We just want to work with you on a tailored solution for the needs and capacities of the locale.


The idea is to offer an FAQ and/or a Forum, depending on what works best for your locale. And we will work with you to find that out. This means that if you want to support your locale and are alone or have little time, there are only a handful of articles to translate. You can also decide to open up a forum and help users as they need. So for example if you’re alone in your locale you could just maintain an FAQ. If you have a small team of helpers you can maintain the FAQ and open a forum too.


The specifics of this will be worked out later this year, but we will certainly not let any users or any community down.




Some of the locales that we will remove will be redirected to another language (e.g.Catalan to Spanish) and for others like Hebrew the English version should be fine. Indian languages have little visits, but if they become much more popular we can definitely rethink the strategy. Which goes to any of the other locales in case anyone makes a good case and is motivated to help. So if you want to have the full version of SUMO and you have a committed team, we are waiting for you with our arms open!


Based on the data from last year here’s the list of locales that we would like to remove from SUMO because they have little traffic and had almost no activity from the community last year:


lt Lithuanian
ca Catalan
nb-NO Norwegian (Bokmal)
he Hebrew
et Estonian
mn Mongolian
mk Macedonian
is Icelandic
eu Euskera
ach Acholi
sr-Latn Serbian – Latin
sq Albanian
ms Malay
ak Akan
sw Swahili
my Burmese
az Azerbaijani
be Belarusian
as Assamese
mr Marathi
kn Kannada
af Afrikaans
eo Esperanto
fy-NL Frisian
rm Rhaeto – Romance
te Telugu
si Sinhalese
pa-IN Punjabi
hy-AM Armenian
ga-IE Gaelic – Ireland
gd Gaelic
kk Kazakh
ff Fula
gu-IN Gujarati
zu Zulu
sah Sakha
gl Galician
rw Rwandan
ilo Ilokano
ast Bable – Asturiano
mai Maithili
lg Luganda
son Songhay
nso Northern Sotho
fur Friulian


What else could be replaced by a F+F solution?


These locales have either little visits or aren’t very active (For example Tamil and Nepali have lovely localizers but not too many visits and Portugese could be put together with Brazilian Portuguese). So we should have a conversation with the communities and figure out which solution makes more sense:


vi Vietnamese
pt-PT Portuguese (Portugal)
bg Bulgarian
hr Croatian
uk Ukranian
fa Farsi
bs Bosnian
bn-IN Bengali
ta Tamil
ta-LK Transitional Tamil
ml Malayalam
km Khmer
ne-NP Nepali


We would like to transition the locales in the first list by the end of March. For the locales in the second list we’ll start a conversation to figure out how to proceed. So please let us know until March 15th if there’s anything in this plan that doesn’t seem like a good idea. And please let us know how to improve it too! We’ll be reaching out to the active contributors in the locales that we want to transition to find a good solution.


We would love to keep the conversation open and transparent for everyone so let’s talk about this on the SUMO L10n forum:


Let us know how this sounds and give us all your ideas!

Getting closer to 1 Million Mozillians



As you know, community is a critical aspect of everything we do at Mozilla. We simply couldn’t be as successful as we are today without the invaluable contributions of every single Mozillian. Last year we created a long term strategic plan to achieve 1 Million Mozillians, a goal that requires internal organization and scalable programs.

Because of this, it’s really exciting for me to announce that Rosana will be transitioning to take the role of Reps Program Manager, under Brian King within the Community Engagement group (a.k.a. just across the corridor).

Since joining 2 years ago, Rosana has brought structure and scalability to our Community Management initiatives. In coordination with Madalina, she has represented us in almost every continent (except Australia?), engaging with local super-heroes (creating a beautiful set of images around the topic too) and promoting the SUMO brand (something that is paying off greatly as we experienced at the Summit). Her efforts around the Buddy Program and Contributor Tools are just 2 of the projects that have dramatically increased the success of SUMO and Mozilla in general. I’m grateful for her contributions and really thankful for what she has enabled us to achieve.

Rosana having a blast with the team

Her move doesn’t do anything but reinforce the great work the whole SUMO organization is doing to enable volunteer Mozillians to participate and create value. With such an ally leading Reps I’m confident that the future is even brighter for SUMO representing our leadership in community involvement.

We are working on the transition plan as we speak. Rosana has kindly agreed to work with us to make this process as smooth as possible. In the meantime, you can contact me or Madalina to help you with anything that you may need help with.

Please join me in congratulating Rosana and wishing her the best in the new role.

LINE is ready for Firefox OS!


Line-app-logo-150x150At SUMO, we realize that the need for choice in messaging services has been among the most popular feedback from our users. Although the development of third-party applications such as these is out of our control, and dependent only on the interest of each developer, Mozilla has been working closely with partners to ensure that our user’s voices are heard.

With this in mind, we are happy to announce that Line, the popular instant messaging service with over 300 million registered users worldwide, is the newest addition to the world of Firefox OS!

This application is fully compatible with all the other available platforms, making it much easier and fun to stay in touch with friends and family. The development of this app supports the idea of Firefox OS as the future of mobile, providing openness, innovation, and opportunity on the Web.

You may download Line by simply searching for “Line” on the Marketplace, or by tapping on the following link from your Firefox OS device:

There are many other choices in the Marketplace that allow users to communicate with each other. Loqui and ConnectA2 are available and allow some compatibility with Whatsapp, while Facebook and MessageMe allow for some additional communication options.

We are looking forward for many more amazing apps to sprout and populate our ever-growing Marketplace in 2014.

Stay tuned!

The quest to solve all the issues. Part 1.

Kadir Topal

Last fall we did a report on the SUMO support forum to assess the current situation, so we could make informed decisions about what to work on next. In particular, we wanted to know  what was keeping us from solving all issues that were brought up in the forums. After analyzing several thousand support forum threads, we came up with a number of suggestions and decided to implement the low hanging fruits right away. Among those low hanging fruits were:

  • We were dropping the ball on users, not getting back to them.
  • We were telling users that we didn’t know how to solve their problem.
  • There were off-topic issues that we didn’t know what to do with.
  • People often didn’t tell us when a solution didn’t help, because it was hard to do so.

We knew that we had to address these issues, if we wanted to increase the “solution” rate. So, we came up with a number of programs and platform changes late last year to eliminate those issues. Specifically, we had the following planned:

  • Make it easy for contributors to tell what needs their attention, so we can drop the rate of cases where we leave them hanging to zero.
  • Extend the reach of the helpdesk to cover those cases where our community doesn’t know how to move forward, and by marking such threads as “hard” allow for specially motivated contributors to become focused on hard issues.
  • Mark things that are off-topic as such, so we can hide them from the general audience and can take special care of them.
  • Users can mark an issues as solved from their email, but telling us that the solution didn’t work required them to log-in. A big an unnecessary hurdle. People should not need to log-in. They should just click on the link in the email and start telling us it didn’t work.

I’m happy to say that we were able to follow through with our plans and those solutions are active on our production systems already. We are now seeing the first results of those changes and I’d like to share them with you. However, I need to preface this with a warning: Unfortunately the timing for the roll-out of those changes was as bad as it gets. First we had the release of a Firefox version that coincided with the launch, then we had the Christmas holidays and then new year. Each of these events leads to highly irregular usage patterns on SUMO, so we need to take the data with a pinch of salt. However, without any further ado, here are two charts, that show the first results:

Questions states on a higher level

Questions states on a higher level

Questions states on a higher level as a stacked area chart

Questions states on a higher level as a stacked area chart

You can see very clearly that we have significantly reduced the number of cases where we left people hanging, the cases that needed our attention. That was one of the primary goals of our efforts and it seems like we’ve achieved that part with great success. Unfortunately this didn’t translate directly into an increase in the “solution” rate yet, but as I mentioned before, the previous few weeks were highly irregular in terms of usage patterns, so we’ll need to wait a little longer, before we can say reliably how our changes affected the overall goal of increasing the “solution” rate.

In the mean time, we are coming up with ideas on how to challenge the bigger issues, now that we have taken care of the low-hanging fruits. I’m incredibly excited about the opportunities in front of us and the new ways we’ll try to address them with. If you are interested in taking part in that discussion, head over to the community discussion forums, and join us in our quest to solve all the issues.

Community growth in 2013: we’re ready for 2014



2013 was a fantastic year for the SUMO community, we grew in numbers, but more importantly we grew much stronger as a healthy community. This is the result of the efforts of a passionate community that has not only done some crazy amounts of contributions, but has also been actively building and growing our community.

So let’s see what growth means:

2013 growth

We grew across the board 20% ! in 2013 we have in average 20% more contributors that accomplish 20% more contributions than in 2012. And if we break it down we see how impressive the accomplishments are. For example the support forum almost doubled the amount of daily active contributors. We now also support Firefox OS and Webmaker and we are ready for 2014.

And so how could we grow 20% this year? It’s the mix of many initiatives:

  • we have built tools to help communities organize themselves and provided many dashboards,
  • we have made contributions more transparent on the profiles recognizing the great work,
  • we have rallied contributors for the Firefox OS releases and on our bi-weekly SUMO days,
  • But most importantly many contributors have stepped up and are leading our community building efforts. We have a community that welcomes and helps new contributors. And we coordinate many efforts in the contributor led buddy program.

We couldn’t achieve this without the help of all of our contributors, but we want to acknowledge our top contributors:


Army of Awesome



So thank you all for making SUMO vibrant, fun and incredibly powerful. We are ready to take on the next challenges in 2014.

SUMO Mobile Meeting Weekly Notes



You couldn’t make it to the Mobile Meeting but you follow our blog regularly?

Starting this week we will be posting the Wednesday meeting notes on our blog as well so that it’s easier for you to follow.

Last week’s notes HERE.

Hope it helps!


[Your Feedback Needed] A simplified and focused L10n dashboard

Kadir Topal


The localization dashboard is going to see major changes soon to make sure that it is as simple and focused on the tasks at hand as possible. We need your feedback to make sure we are making the right decisions. If you are using the L10n dashboard and want to take part in the discussion, please had over to the following bug, have a look at the attached mockup, and leave your comment:

The following is a quick summary of what changes we are making and why.

One of the biggest strength of the platform that SUMO is built on is the fact that localization has been one of the key design components. We created several localizer personas when we designed Kitsune and had them in mind when we made decisions early on. One of those decisions was to create an L10n dashboard that would present all the data that localizers might need to get their job done.

Since the early SUMO was rather small and focused on a single product, the L10n dashboard worked pretty well. Since then however, we have increased the scope of SUMO and added several more products and more functionality. The L10n dashboard grew organically during those times to cover more products and functionality.

Now seems like a good time to take a look at the tasks that localizers are faced with today and bring the the L10n dashboard into shape again. Rosana and I started that discussion with one thought: The L10n dashboard should answer one question and should do that as good as possible: “What should I be working on next”.

The current L10n dashboard present a lot of data, but unfortunately not all of it is relevant or actionable. While that data should still be accessible, it doesn’t make sense to present it as prominently as we are doing today. Having the one question in mind we cut back a lot of unnecessary information and came up with a streamlined, simple interface that bundles information and presents only things that localizers need at any moment. When we printed the current L10n dashboard out, it took covered 4 full pages, the current proposal can fit onto a single page.

Here you can see a mockup of our proposed L10n dashboard:
localization dashboard

To summarize the changes we made:

  • The product picker that is currently a drop down becomes a visual product picker. The product icons should be rather small though, to make sure people can see as much of the L10n dashboard above the fold as possible.
  •  The overview section is slimmed down by removing the “administration” articles and the explanatory text. We oversize the progress bar for the top 20 articles, so that updated articles lead to visible changes. The logic of orange -> green stays the same. We then remove the explanatory text and add it to the overview section items as tooltips. The now free space is used for bigger progress bars.
  • The actual content section is separated into Localization and Review
  • The Localization tab has a list of articles that need attention, where need attention is defined as “needs translation, needs update, and needs immediate update”. The list is ordered by most views in the last 30 days. Thus we are doing away with all other lists on the L10n dashboard.
  • Each article in the “needs attention” list shows below it the templates that are included in the article that need attention. Same rules for “need attention” as before.
  • The review tab has a list of top 20 articles needing review with a link to all articles needing review. The templates are listed the same way as on the localization tab, only templates that need review or “need attention” are listed.

If you want to take part in the discussion, please had over to this bug and leave your comment there:

We need your feedback to make sure we are making the right decisions with these big changes.