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by Franki

This article at Cnet was recently brought to my attention, and after having a read, I decided that it was worth covering the importance of properly researching a topic before writing about it. In this Cnet story, they claim Firefox’s run is over now that IE7 is to be released, and she makes some comments that are simply untrue and indicate a lack of research by the author. For example, she asks the question: “Why is there no way to check for updates from within the browser?” (Firefox). A quick look in the options menu of Firefox shows that it has a full update system with “Check Now” button, which is capable of updating not only the browser itself, but 3rd party themes and extensions as well. She also claims that it’s a pain that Firefox doesn’t support a great number of pages written for Internet Explorer, and she says that if IE7 is at least 50% as secure as the current version, the Firefox revolution is over, but what she doesn’t mention, is that Service pack 2 for XP supposedly made IE6 more then 50% more secure then pre SP2 versions, and Service Pack 2 didn’t really dent Firefox uptake at all. Apparently calling it IE7 will make all the difference? In truth, the only places I have seen that have any trouble with Firefox, is some corporate intranets, and the occasional online bank, and those are becoming fewer all the time. She also failes to mention that both SP2 and IE7 are for Windows XP users only, so all those millions of people using 98/ME/2000 will have to use Firefox to get a comparable experiance. So the real cost of IE7 for those people, is the price of a copy of XP, which is usually at least a couple of hundred dollars. Or they can just download Firefox for free, tough choice right?
To me the Cnet article smells like a story designed to incite anger from Firefox supporters, perhaps to drive traffic to the site. Either way it doesn’t matter, my point here, is that by publishing articles that anyone can poke factual holes in, you have really achieved nothing except to hurt your own creditability. In many minds, Cnet is already considered a shill of Microsoft’s, this article does nothing to dispel that theory.

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