Before we start, I have a confession to make. I was a Chrome user. As part of my job, I open and close Firefox a lot and it was simply easier to use a browser other than Firefox for my day to day browsing. After what Google has done recently, though, I have no interest in supporting them by using their browser. Here’s why.
If you haven’t heard, with Google Chrome 21, you can no longer install extensions from a location other than the Chrome Web Store. (Well you can, but it requires downloading them, opening the Extensions page and then dragging and dropping the CRX file onto that page – a usability and accessibility nightmare.)
This wouldn’t be that big of a deal, except for the fact the Chrome Web Store is almost as bad as the Apple App Store (maybe worse). Your extension can be taken down for any reason and you have no recourse when it is removed. You are not given a reason for the removal and you are not provided any way to talk to Google to discuss why your extension was removed. Your account can also be suspended without cause, even though you paid money to get that account. Again, you have no contacts with whom to discuss the situation.
Although I have had my issues with AMO in the past, I’ll never complain again. At least they provide a certain level of transparency, e-mail and even IRC communication. With Google, you have nothing.
Google has complete control over your extensions, and there is nothing you can do about it.
If you’ve ever wondered why you should care about Mozilla and Firefox and the Mozilla Marketplace and Firefox OS, this is why. Because in the end, the only way you can control your destiny is to be a part of it. And with Mozilla, you actually have a chance to be a part of it.
So going forward, I will only use Chrome to work on extensions I have already developed and to test websites. And Kaply Consulting will not be developing extensions for Google Chrome.
What about you? Do you support an open web?