How to Get Sponsorship for your Developer Event
What this page is for
Seeking sponsorship for developer-oriented events? You're in the right place.
- Want to ask Mozilla Developer Relations to promote your Mozilla-related developer event, associated with Mozilla technologies or involving Tech Speakers, Reps, or Mozilla employees? Submit the Event Notification Form.
- Have a question about events that is not covered by the request form, please email devsponsorship (at) mozilla (dot) com.
Why we sponsor events
Mozilla Developer Relations seeks to help developers use open web technologies. One way we do this is by supporting technical conferences and meetups that bring developers together to share knowledge about open Web technologies.
We seek to foster diversity and inclusion in the technology industry because it is the right thing to do. Diverse teams can also create better products, foster a better work environment, and to improve organization and team performance. For more details, see the DevRel Participation Policy.
How to make a request
All requests are received via the Developer Events Request Form, and should be submitted at least 8 weeks prior to your event's date.
This allows sufficient time to review, confirm a speaker & arrange travel, complete sponsorship tasks, and so on.
Mozilla Reps or community members organizing Mozilla-oriented events must go through the Mozilla Rep in their geographic area. The Developer Events team coordinates with the Reps program to make sure that events are not cross-submitted or funded by both programs. If you are a Mozilla community member organizing an event, please review the How To Guideline .
If you are seeking a Mozilla Tech Speaker to present at your event, please take a moment to fill out the Tech Speaker Request Form. This form gathers some basic information about your event and your specific needs, so that we can best match you with an appropriate speaker.
Types of support
Support can take the form of assistance securing Mozilla speakers, providing Mozilla-branded promotional items, or financial sponsorship, with a special emphasis on promoting diversity and accessibility assistance. Hackathon support primarily consists of connecting organizers to speakers and mentors in their region.
We do not usually consider requests that require significant financial support (in general, above $5,000 USD). In cases where we do sponsor at a higher amount, there must be significant alignment with Mozilla goals and a strong partnership between the organizing group and Mozilla. Larger sponsorships generally encompass a series of events or a high-profile opportunity, and require contracts between the event and Mozilla.
Who reviews and approves requests?
- Requests are reviewed weekly (unless holidays or other scheduling conflicts arise) by the Developer Events Team.
- Sandra Persing and Havi Hoffman are the core team evaluating requests.
- Members of technical and engineering teams, such as Mixed Reality, Firefox Developer Tools, WebAssembly, and others are both invited to the meetings and consulted before/after about suitability of specific events for their audiences/technologies, the appropriateness of requested topics, and for help identifying speakers (both within their organizations and volunteers/external people).
How requests are reviewed
All event support requests are evaluated based on this set of criteria:
- Code of conduct: In keeping with Mozilla's culture of inclusiveness, we require event organizers seeking sponsorship or speaker to create, publish, and enforce a code of conduct for their event participants. You can find examples and guidance for writing a code of conduct on the Geek feminism wiki. Our Mozillians are awesome, and they all deserve to be treated with respect.
- Diversity & Inclusion: Does the event demonstratebest practices (as detailed elsewhere on this page) in regards to speaker and attendee diversity?
- Alignment to Mozilla goals and strategy: Your request shows a clear relationship between the event and achieving Mozilla, Emerging Technologies team, and our DevRel|Developer Relations goals. We have a set amount of funding every year, and we need to ensure that our dollars are spent on events that are supporting the goals we have set for the year.
- Brand alignment: We will carefully evaluate the impact of having the Mozilla name and logo associated with the event submitted, and the people organizing/speaking/attending, to make sure the request and our support is in alignment.
- Submission at least 8 weeks prior to event date: It takes time to review requests. Please be considerate and respectful regarding this time frame to allow sufficient time for consideration.
- Mozilla participation: Money alone doesn't represent Mozilla very well, so we sponsor events with involvement by members of the Mozilla community (volunteers or staff) by preference. They could be attending, speaking, organizing, or participating in some other way, as long as they are at the event in person.
- Note: If you have no Mozillians involved in your event, we are happy to help find someone to speak, attend, sit on a panel, etc., but this does NOT guarantee a sponsorship. Finding Mozilla participants is judged independently of sponsorship opportunities.
- We also look at historical involvement and feedback: Did the event meet or surpass expectations and "best of class" guidelines? Do we know and trust the organizers? Have there been problems with/at the event in the past? If there were, how did organizers deal with them? These will help guide a decision and influence the amount we choose to invest.
- No pay-to-speak: We don't pay for sponsored speaking slots, or accept speaking slots that are contingent on sponsorship. We prefer that Mozilla speakers be invited or accepted on the quality of their presentations and the interest the attendees have in what they have to say, not because Mozilla has paid to put someone in front of an audience. We believe this policy:
- is equitable to conference organizers seeking Mozilla speakers
- is fair to other speakers who don't have the means to pay for a speaking opportunity
- helps us gauge interest in the topics and products we might propose to speak about
- maintains the credibility of Mozilla speakers with audiences
- Budget consideration: These sponsorships come directly from Developer Relations. We are limited in resources and usually do not consider supporting requests that require significant sponsorship (in general, above $5,000 USD). However, we are happy to review your event and its purpose to help direct the request to another Mozilla department.
What to expect after your support request is submitted
- Here's the general timeline (subject to change and exceptions):
- We review requests that are three months out from current date (for example, if it's currently January 2016, we are generally reviewing requests Feb, Mar, April of 2016.
- The DevRel Events team meets on a weekly basis to review requests submitted through the events form. Email requests will be redirected to the form, and all communications will be followed up on the form. Sometimes, the team takes additional time to re-direct the request to the appropriate team, or to wait for replies that are dependent to the request submitted.
- If Mozilla sponsors your event, please be aware that we will ask you for follow-up information after the event, such as number of attendees and social media reach. The purpose of this follow-up is to help us track the effectiveness of our sponsorships and make decisions for the future. You're probably collecting this information anyway.
- For direct follow-up and to ask questions, please email devsponsorship (at) mozilla (dot) com.
Diversity and Inclusion Policy
Mozilla promotes inclusion by making our support for events contingent on the following:
- Code of Conduct: As described in How Events Are Reviewed
- Supporting Diversity: We will only speak at or sponsor an event where organizers have demonstrated a commitment to enhance the diversity of their speakers and attendees by supporting the participation of underrepresented groups (omen, people of color, people with disabilities, and non-binary persons). This includes only participating in panel discussions of two or more people where there is at least one member of these underrepresented groups on the panel, not including the chair. Events with over 25 attendees need to have venues that are accessible and have an assigned point of contact for issues of accessibility.
This includes events hosted or funded by staff, representatives, or ambassadors of Mozilla and our projects.
Mozilla will decline to provide speakers or sponsorship to events that do not adhere to these standards, and reserves the right to withdraw speakers, funding or visible sponsorship (logos, booth, etc) from any event that demonstrates an unwillingness or inability to provide an inclusive and safe environment. This includes falsely claiming diverse attendees or speakers, continuing to allow inappropriate or harassing conduct and content, and not adequately responding to abuse or COC violations.
There may be cases when it will be a struggle for organisers to meet the rules above, especially with smaller scale events or meetups. We are always willing to discuss these on a case by case basis and provide assistance and guidance on how to implement practices that will help your events meet these guidelines. However, we are unable, and frankly, unwilling, to bend the rules regardless of the event, organizer, or ongoing relationship with Mozilla and the tech community.
Why this matters
Events are a highly visible part of our industry. Events build community and grow expertise, and encouraging broad participation in tech events and communities depends on an inclusive and welcoming experience for all, no matter their gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, national origin, disability or any other factor.
Speakers at events serve not only as representatives of their respective companies and technologies, but as role models and highly visible faces of the tech industry and beyond. It is therefore vital that speakers and the content they present represent the diverse range of people working in technology today and who will be working in technology tomorrow.
We highly encourage the following practices:
- Offering diversity scholarships (free or discounted tickets) to people in underrepresented groups, and where necessary, financial help towards travel or accommodation.
- Mindful support of accessibility, including staff training, live captioning, assistive listening devices, hearing or induction loops, Braille and tactile signage, and food options, with signage, available for participants with dietary restrictions/allergies. Providing ability for remote attendance and engagement, such as live streaming or telepresence. Development of events that cater to specific underrepresented groups as a way to foster inclusion and diversity in our industry.
- Including questions about your Code of Conduct in post-event surveys.
- Inclusive language. We encourage, and will always use, inclusive language at events and in online communities surrounding events. This includes, but is not limited to, discouraging the use of gendered or ableist language and content.
References and Resources
Code of Conduct Examples
- Mozilla View Source conference
- Rust Community
- O'Reilly Conferences
- Crowd-sourced conference code of conduct
Code of Conduct Reporting & Response Procedure Examples:
- PyCon Attendee Procedure for incident handling
- PyCon Staff Procedure for incident handling
- Post-event COC survey questions used by Mozilla
Accessibility Standards Examples: