Mozilla has plans to start showing ads to first-time users of the Firefox browser. For the target group of users, the ads will appear alongside other content in what Mozilla is calling a Directory Tiles program.
Directory Tiles are those nine rectangular boxes you see the first time you open a Firefox window or tab. For new users, the tiles are empty, but Mozilla says those empty tiles are not delivering any value to them. Hence the Directory Tiles program.
When the program rolls out, those empty tiles, which gets populated with websites that you visit most often, will, for first-time users, include pre-packaged content, some of which will be from Mozilla and others from sponsored content by Mozilla’s partners.
Note that first-time users does not necessarily mean those using Firefox for the very first time. If you install a new distribution or operating system and launch Firefox, you are a first-time user. I’m totally in favor of this program, and I think Mozilla should extend the program to all users. After all, those employees have to be paid (did you even think that this was just about delivering value to users?).
Firefox is my default Web browser and as somebody who is not a first-time user, I don’t know how many times I launch a new tab. Right now, the nine tiles I see are populated with my most visited websites. I wouldn’t mind seeing one or two ads in those tiles, provided they are delivered in a manner that does not violate my privacy. And I certainly would not mind if Mozilla shares some of the revenue with me.
In case you are curious, this screenshot shows my Directory Tiles. Yep, I love to watch WTA Tennis and I’m on DigitalOcean’s referral program. If you are looking to have your own Cloud server and you sign up with my referral account, DigitalOcean will drop something in my account when your bill hits $10 USD. You see, this is all about the money.