You’re probably aware of how the Firefox add-on system works by now, but we’ll give a quick recap. Over a year ago Mozilla decided that they needed to add a middle-man to the extension publishing process so that they could ensure that only the quality extensions made it onto the add-ons site. This seemed like the right move since users generally trust the content found on Mozilla’s site, but it has become a sore spot for those who are creating the extensions and themes.
A few weeks ago we released our first extension, CyberSearch, and since then it has received over 3,400 downloads. A few days after its release I decided to put it up for public nomination, which (if accepted) means that it can be downloaded from the add-ons site without needing a username and password. Our extension is currently sitting with 24 reviews (4.40 out of 5.00 stars), and has over 3,700 daily users. So the other day I was wondering why it hadn’t made its way out of the sandbox.
I started searching around, and that’s when I came across this thread in a Mozilla forum. Apparently I wasn’t the only one wondering what was going on. So what’s the hold up? Not enough extension editors/moderators, period. The release of Firefox 3 caused an onslaught of new/updated extensions to get submitted to the site, and they just can’t keep up with the vast quantity of submissions. As of yesterday there were 215 extension updates waiting to get published, and another 461 extensions like ours that are waiting to make their way out of the sandbox.
If you’ve got some spare time you should consider becoming an extension editor yourself. I’m just hoping that this kind of thing doesn’t discourage developers from creating new add-ons for the browser.