Mozilla countersues Oath over Firefox switch from Yahoo to Google

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Mozilla has claimed that Yahoo as a search engine was not able to uphold quality standards and that is the reason for the termination of the contract.

Yahoo's parent company, Oath (Verizon) has filed a complaint against Mozilla for breach of contract. This has been termed by Mozilla as a breach of contract.

Mozilla and Oath are heading to court after the companies filed lawsuits against each other related to the decision to switch the Firefox default search engine from Yahoo to Google. The case was filed by Verizon in the Court of California on 1st of December.

That precise thing occurred just a few weeks back, as the company launched its new Quantum browser, switching back to Google in the process. The response has been full of adulation and admiration due to the contemporary interface of the web browser as well as the improved third-party extension system. Last month, Mozilla terminated that deal and made Google the default search engine in the U.S., Canada, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

This unusual clause was added to the deal struck by former Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer as a means of luring Mozilla away from Google.

Three years ago, Yahoo and Mozilla came to an agreement that saw it become the company's official search engine in the United States.

By the middle of past year, only 23% of Firefox users kept Yahoo as the default search engine, Mozilla alleged.

While Mozilla emphasizes that the decision to replace Yahoo with Google was exclusively taken to improve the customer experience with the new version of the web browser, Yahoo has knocked the court's door with the hope of saving its limited customer base through the web browser. The Mozilla-Yahoo deal is worth as much as $300 million per year, which is a huge chunk of Mozilla's annual income.

In a statement, Mozilla explained: "We recently exercised our contractual right to terminate our agreement with Yahoo based on a number of factors including doing what's best for our brand, our effort to provide quality web search, and the broader content experience for our users".

Oath, the company that runs the Yahoo search engine and which is owned by Verizon is not commenting on Mozilla's counter-claim. We enter into all of our relationships with a shared goal to deliver a great user experience and further the web as an open platform. As early as January 2015, Mozilla began discussions with Yahoo on the shortcomings of the quality of the search product.

The counter-claim also suggested that the allegedly missing payments have kicked a hole in Mozilla's budget. The firm says it used its right to bring the relationship to an end.

Yahoo's acquisition by Verizon wasn't in the best interests of Firefox users, according to Dixon, in terms of the search experience they would be presented with. Still, we are proud of how we conducted our business and product work throughout the relationship, how we handled the termination of the agreement, and we are confident in our legal positions.