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The Firefox Effect

The Firefox Effect

By Andrew Impey

New research on how we browse the Internet has revealed some astonishing data. Surfers who use Mozilla Firefox are happier, healthier, more popular and even more virile than their IE counterparts.

The battle of the browsers has been building ever since Mozilla released Firefox back in 2004 and it just got a whole lot worse, from Microsoft’s perspective at least. In addition to mounting technological evidence suggesting that Firefox is a better option than IE, there is now supporting evidence that even the individual surfers themselves are rapidly evolving into two completely different online species.

Stig Bålle of Uppsala University in Sweden, who carried out the research, was as surprised as anyone at the strength of the results. “The evidence is clear for all to see,” said Prof Bålle at a hastily arranged press conference in Stockholm this week. “When compared with their IE colleagues, Firefox users have better jobs, higher wages and are more likely to gain promotion.”

The psychological study of user profiles also explored the attractiveness of the different groups and this was where the most startling results came to light. Not only had IE users had fewer sexual partners, they were six times less inclined to experiment in the bedroom, five times less likely to get asked out on a date and eleven times more likely to suffer impotency or loss of sexual appetite. Mozilla boss, Mitchell Baker, wasn’t quoted as saying, “IE users are bit limp, just like IE”, but he probably thought it.

Prof Bålle was clearly excited by the revelation of his findings but was equally measured when discussing the ramifications for the future. “We live in a material world where image is everything,” he twittered. “As the Internet becomes more and more important in people’s lives, their choices of software become a matter of fashion. We have shown that with browsers, Firefox wears the trousers.”

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09 Dec 2008
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