Is ThunderBird a scam organization?

Discuss various technical topics not related to Mozilla.
New Member
Posts: 1
Joined: June 10th, 2017, 10:33 pm

Post Posted June 15th, 2017, 11:32 pm

I am Japanese ThunderBird User. I made a donation to ThunderBird in September last year in accordance with ThunderBird screen donation request.
Before donation to ThunderBird we made a donation of ¥ 1,000 (about $ 8) to Wikipedia.
In the same way I intended to donate \ 1,000 to ThunderBird.(\ means Japanese Yen)
However, in November last year I was very surprised to see a $ 1,000 charge from Visa.

At this point, even if you enter "\ 1,000" on ThunderBird's donation screen, "\" is ignored.
It seems that it was interpreted as "$ 1,000".
I was very surprised and sent a mail of cancellation of donation to ThunderBird several times ,but I had no answer at all.(thunderbird-donate at
I was forced to pay $ 1,000 to Visa It was.

On ThunderBird's site
1. Cancellation will be accepted.
2. We will respond to inquiries by e-mail within 48 hours.
Although it was written, there is no contact at all.
$ 1,000 is a tremendous amount of money for me.

After that, the ThunderBird donation screen was improved to be able to enter Japanese yen.
They seem to have noticed the problem of the Donation amount input screen.

But there is no contact from ThunderBird at all.
I guess ThunderBird is an unreliable organization aimed at gathering money.

I never use ThunderBird again ,because I am discouraged by this matter. I also stop donating to foreign software.

bob c
Posts: 111
Joined: September 7th, 2003, 10:09 am

Post Posted June 16th, 2017, 2:23 am

I don't know if I believe you.
I have toured Japan, on vacation, and had purchases (buys) the other way, from my credit card (American), $ to your Yen. With no trouble from the card company.

You made 1 big mistake, which is why I don't know if I believe what your saying. You should have called Visa immediately, informed them this was a yen to $ transaction. They would have corrected the purchased.


User avatar
Posts: 119930
Joined: September 23rd, 2004, 8:57 pm
Location: Somewhere on the right coast

Post Posted June 16th, 2017, 4:06 am

Moving to MozillaZine Tech as this has nothing to do with Thunderbird itself.

Also note that tThis forum is not run by or formally associated with Mozilla. We're an independent user-helping-user community.


User avatar
Posts: 11951
Joined: October 19th, 2007, 4:23 am
Location: ... Da' Swamp

Post Posted June 16th, 2017, 5:00 am

This is an example and a result where a physical donation mailing address would have prevented the error and resulting dissatisfaction.
There's absolutely no reason for people to have to pay on line and it is arrogant to continue to disregard the snail mail option.
Just about any bank, post office or wireservice in the world can issue a bank check or money order in a country's own currency which can be mailed to the address.
Even if it's the address of the bank only with reference to account and a simple statement of how deposits are to be dealt with even from anonymous donors.
I've no clue to how much is lost in the mail or the amount of errors for cards but it would seem more would be lost on the card use than mail theft plus the resulting Internet exposure.
There's also the loss of donations to the company due to people not wanting to use something like Paypal or other Internet payment method.
You also have the disappointment as levied by the OP. :-k


User avatar
Posts: 2134
Joined: May 5th, 2004, 10:40 am
Location: Belgium

Post Posted June 16th, 2017, 7:29 am

bob c wrote:You made 1 big mistake, which is why I don't know if I believe what your saying. You should have called Visa immediately, informed them this was a yen to $ transaction. They would have corrected the purchased.

I'm not sure if that's necessarily true, at least from a European perspective (which is not the same as an American one, and I have no idea about Japanese).

First you're supposed to try to work it out with the company or organization (Mozilla).

If that isn't successful, or they don't respond within a reasonable amount of time, you contact your bank or VISA directly, depending on the specifics, and tell them that you'd like to cancel the payment. Your bank and/or VISA could still decide that since you ordered the payment it can't be reversed. You're really only protected against someone else randomly charging you, not so much against messing up yourself. That's not to say they won't look into it, just that I don't necessarily think it's a given that they would be able to correct the problem.
Intelligent alien life does exist, otherwise they would have contacted us.


User avatar
Posts: 44151
Joined: July 30th, 2003, 5:06 pm

Post Posted June 16th, 2017, 7:55 pm

The donate to Mozilla web page has a explicit "Check" link to instructions on how to donate via a check. That seems to have been omitted in the Thunderbird specific version of that web page. However, it has a "FAQ" link to similar instructions on how to donate via a check for Thunderbird. Since you've missed the window for resolving this by contacting your credit card company I suggest you send a letter to the same destination you are supposed to send a check.

Thunderbird at Mozilla Foundation
331 E. Evelyn Ave,
Mountain View, CA 94041


User avatar
Posts: 4
Joined: August 10th, 2006, 10:46 am

Post Posted June 18th, 2017, 3:29 am

I'm sorry to hear that there was such a mixup, this is a jawdropping difference! The Thunderbird team most definitely wants you to donate only as much as you wanted to, and we would love to work with you to make sure that is the case.

I've checked emails to thunderbird-donate at mozilla org but could not find any messages requesting a cancellation. Could you send me an email to kewisch at from the same email you used for donations? I will happily forward this to the internal team that takes care of donations and will be able to refund your donation.

If you don't get a reply from me within 2 days, please post here again and we'll have to find a different way to get in touch.

Posts: 3
Joined: March 24th, 2003, 8:02 am
Location: Germany

Post Posted June 18th, 2017, 6:24 am

Aou normally get a confirmation afterwards which mentions the specific amount again. I just tried it now and I get indeed a button later again, after entering my personal and payment information, that says "Pay $5". (Of course, I don't know what it would have said when you made the transaction, because you said yourself that the donation website changed since then. But I would assume that it also showed the amount and currency again, because that's standard practice.)

More importantly:

At this point, even if you enter "(Yen) 1,000" on ThunderBird's donation screen, "(Yen)" is ignored.

This was the main mistake. If you did exactly that, it's clear that this *cannot* work. You cannot just enter a currency symbol or name in a field that is made for numbers. Of course the website will ignore the currency you entered, because it never expected a currency in the amount field. Unless the website is specifically written to accept other currencies, this will not work. Please keep that in mind in the future, because you will encounter the same problem on other websites.

After that, the ThunderBird donation screen was improved to be able to enter Japanese yen.

Right. If the website allows you to do it, it should work. If the website doesn't allow that, which seems to be the case when you made the donation, it cannot possibly work.

As Philip said, if it's possible to reimburse you, Thunderbird will do that.

Return to MozillaZine Tech

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests