Introducing Joel Johnson / JR (Rina’s Maternity cover)

Hello everyone,

Please say hi to Joel Johnson who’s going to cover Rina Tambo Jensen while she’s away for her parental leave for the next 6 months. JR has an extensive background in starting and setting up support teams across different companies. We’re so excited to have him on our team.

Here is a short introduction from JR:

Hello Everyone! My Name is JoelRodney Johnson and I go by JR. I am from Dallas, Texas and have lived most of my life there. I spent several years in San Fransisco where I got started in Support and started a career in Tech. My guilty pleasure is reading Sci-Fi/Fantasy novels and if you were to take a look at my audible account you might be surprised at the amount of books I have in my library. I am so happy to be joining the Mozilla team as the Product Support Manager overseeing customer service for Mozilla products. I look forward to an exciting future here in Support.

Please join us to welcome him!

Updates on Firefox Private Network

Hi SUMO Community,

Following up on our previous announcement about Firefox Private Network, today marks another milestone for Firefox. We are so excited to expand Firefox Private Network into two different offerings.

Browser-level protection (Extension for any desktop running the Firefox browser)

We are continuing our beta testing of the Firefox Private Network extension that we released earlier this year. The extension hides your Firefox browsing activity and location. This prevents eavesdroppers on public Wi-Fi from spying on the actions you take online by masking your IP address and routing your traffic through our partner’s secure servers. It also protects you from internet service providers collecting or selling data on your browsing activity. And it hides your locations from websites and data collectors that profile you to target ads.

There will be no changes for test pilots who have already started using the extension by logging in with their Firefox account. For those who are not yet using the extension, we invite you to join the Test Pilot program and try it out. When you sign up or log in with a Firefox account and become one of our beta testers, you’ll get 12 hours of protected browsing for free this month. We are continuing to explore the best way to deliver browser-level protection to our users and we welcome your feedback and input each step of the way.

Get extra security by using full-device protection (Windows 10)

If you are looking for unlimited private internet connection that goes beyond the Firefox browser, we are also offering full-device protection with Firefox Private Network. Firefox Private Network full-device protection is a device-level VPN that provides an encrypted tunnel to the web from any software or app on your Windows 10 device.That means your connection is secure and private regardless of which browser or application you are using.

Private Network’s full-device protection is currently available for beta testers in the United States with Windows 10 devices, but it will be available on other platforms soon. You can join the waitlist for the VPN beta here. Selected users will receive an invitation to subscribe for 4.99 USD per month with a U.S. credit card during the beta period.

How can I help as a SUMO contributor?

For the SUMO community, it’s important to understand that we now have two separate products for both services in the Kitsune platform. In addition to that, we also offer another level of support for the paying customers of the Firefox Private Network device-level protection that will be delivered through a ticketing system called Zendesk. As such, both the forums and also Zendesk will be managed by our designated staff member, Brady. However, as with the previous beta phase, we will also welcome any help you may provide for the users in the forum. We are also working on an escalation process from the community to the designated staff member, so expect more updates on that.

We are enthusiastic about this new opportunity and hope that you’ll support us along the way. To get the best out of Firefox experience, sign up for a Firefox Account and join our fight to keep the internet open and accessible to all!

Introducing Bryce and Brady

Hello SUMO Community,

I’m thrilled to share this update with you today. Bryce and Brady have joined us last week and will be able to help out on Support for some of the new efforts Mozilla are working on towards creating a connected and integrated Firefox experience.

They are going to be involved with new products, but also they won’t forget to put extra effort in providing support on forums and as well as serving as an escalation point for hard to solve issues.

Here is a short introduction to Brady and Bryce:

Hi! My name is Brady, and I am one of the new members of the SUMO team. I am originally from Boise, Idaho and am currently going to school for a Computer Science degree at Boise State. In my free time, I’m normally playing video games, writing, drawing, or enjoying the Sawtooths. I will be providing support for Mozilla products and for the SUMO team.

Hello!  My name is Bryce, I was born and raised in San Diego and I reside in Boise, Idaho.  Growing up I spent a good portion of my life trying to be the best sponger(boogie boarder) and longboarder in North County San Diego.  While out in the ocean I had all sorts of run-ins with sea creatures; but nothing to scary. I am also an IN-N-Out fan, as you may find me sporting their merchandise with boardshorts and the such.   I am truly excited to be part of this amazing group of fun loving folks and I am looking forward to getting to know everyone.

Please welcome them warmly!

Community Management Update

Hello SUMO community,

I have a couple announcements for today. I’d like you all to welcome our two new community managers.

First off Kiki has officially joined the SUMO team as a community manager. Kiki has been filling in with Konstantina and Ruben on our social support activities. We had an opportunity to bring her onto the SUMO team full time starting last week. She will be transitioning out of her responsibilities at the Community Development Team and will be continuing her work on the social program as well as managing SUMO days going forward.

In addition, we have hired a new SUMO community manager to join the team. Please welcome Giulia Guizzardi to the SUMO team.

You can find her on the forums as gguizzardi. Below is a short introduction:

Hey everyone, my name is Giulia Guizzardi, and I will be working as a Support Community Manager for Mozilla. 

I am currently based in Berlin, but I was born and raised in the north-east of Italy. I studied Digital Communication in Italy and Finland, and worked for half a year in Poland.

My greatest passion is music, I love participating in festivals and concerts along with collecting records and listening to new releases all day long. Other than that, I am often online, playing video games (Firewatch at the moment) or scrolling Youtube/Reddit.

I am really excited for this opportunity and happy to work alongside the community!

Now that we have two new community managers we will work with Konstantina and Ruben to transition their work to Kiki and Giulia. We’re also kicking off work to create a community strategy which we will be seeking feedback for soon. In the meantime, please help me welcome Kiki and Giulia to the team.

SUMO Platform Roadmap

Our support platform went through numerous changes and transitions during the last couple of years. With the SUMO team joining efforts with the Open Innovation group last year, we have started thinking about different approaches to our support platform strategy. Our support platform is complex and there are a lot of legacy items that need to be taken care of. Besides this we need to get ready for all the new things that are coming our way.

We want to ensure we’re providing a stable platform that will support Mozilla in the years to come as well as manage all the new products and changes expected in the following years.

During this first half of the year we have worked on setting up a roadmap that prioritizes the work and helps us be more intentional about the changes we want to make in order to provide the best support platform for our users. With this we have also worked on new processes that will hopefully simplify the way we work with the platform as well as the overall development process.

What’s new

Our current efforts are focused almost 100% on the integration of Firefox Accounts. In parallel we’ve also been working with the IT team to complete a migration of the infrastructure to a new instance of AWS (this has been completed on June 5th). Firefox Accounts implementation will follow shortly. After these major pieces of work are done our next big priorities are: Elastic search upgrades, ongoing UX experiments and a Responsive Design implementation that has become even more important as Google now indexes our site as mobile-first..

There will be more discussions about H2 and how we’re going to manage platform priorities in the second half of the year in July.

You can consult the current platform roadmap here.

This is a high-level overview on each project we’re working on and the expected timeline for completion. We’re going to review the roadmap items at the beginning of each month.

All the development work is being tracked in sprints and you can follow our current sprint here.

As mentioned before, the SUMO platform is a large complex platform with a lot of legacy issues that need to be dealt with. Currently we have around 700 bugs filed, many of them being more than 5 years old. As we don’t have enough resources to deal with this huge backlog we’ll need to change a few processes. We have designed a new triage and roadmap review process that you can read about here . Bugs that are not critical to the stability of the platform and are older than 6 months will be closed – this is a one time only event and we expect this to take care of most outdated bugs that will never be fixed. Feel free to open a new bug if you feel the issue is urgent or should be prioritized nonetheless.

Please note

We’re currently focusing on: Firefox Accounts implementation, the IT migration as well as any critical issues that break the site or block releases. Any other items are currently on hold. We can prioritize other issues as needed as per the process described in the document shared above.

SUMO staff team