ESPN Motion for Firefox Launched

Hot on the heels of the ESPN Motion for Mac release a couple of days ago, we’ve now enabled Motion for PC Firefox users as well. Just head to the front page and you’ll see your video selections in the sidebar running down the right side of the page. The sidebar, of course, follows you from page to page on ESPN so you can really access Motion from anywhere on the site.

Although I’m not really supposed to comment on these sorts of things, let me just say that the initial release of ESPN Motion for Internet Explorer a little over a year ago had nothing to do with the sorts of nefarious theories put out by a few ill-informed reporters. One reporter attempted to knock ESPN for not supporting web standards because Motion didn’t work on Firefox, when in reality, not only do we lead the charge towards web standards in our category, but Motion was clearly a “bonus” feature to the site and it was only made possible by technology not available in Firefox. Another reporter falsely concluded that the setup had something to do with our then partnership with MSN. Again, not true.

The initial release of ESPN Motion for Internet Explorer was strictly an issue of prevalent technology. ActiveX, for all of its shortcomings, provides a clear filesystem I/O which allowed us to download and store high quality video on users’ machines without any detrimental side effects… the downside being that it was only implementable in Internet Explorer.

Anyway, enough of that. Motion is now freely available to all. Happy?

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25 Responses:

  1. Geof says:

    Happy? You bet!

  2. SecurityExpert says:

    According to, ActiveX only has one shortcoming.

  3. Jeff says:

    IT says I must have internet explorer… :(

  4. Mike D. says:


    You are probably clicking a link for the downloadable version of Motion, which is for PC IE. We still need to modify the verbiage on some of those links throughout ESPN.

  5. Jafe Mourner says:

    Woohoo! Thanks, Mike!

  6. Bacon says:

    Awesome work.

  7. Aaron says:

    It looks great. Keep up the good work, and keep spreading the Fire. :)

  8. Tim Hill says:

    Nice work looks awesome,

  9. Nick Guarracino says:

    Anyway, enough of that. Motion is now freely available to all. Happy?

    Very happy! This is great news – thanks Mike.

    it was only made possible by technology not available in Firefox

    So did something change in Firefox that makes ESPN Motion possible now, or did you find a different way to implement it? Last time I checked, ActiveX was not included with my copy of Firefox ;-)

  10. Mike D. says:


    Well, yes, things have changed in Firefox over the last year, and it’s much much faster, especially when layering things like video and Flash. It’s still a bit buggy and has some redraw issues which crop up from time-to-time, but its performance is more than acceptable in this regard.

    But, yes, video is being delivered in a totally different way to Firefox and Mac users. Motion for Firefox and Mac utilizes Flash to download the video progressively into your browser cache instead of downloading it in the background to a special directory. This is why the video quality is not quite as stellar as with the original version, but if you’re like me, the convenience more than makes up for that.

  11. Pat says:

    Pretty happy. It would be nice if the espn toolbar worked on firefox instead of only IE.

    If you like, we can tweak our firefox toolbar and build one for ESPN.


  12. Blake Scarbrough says:

    Now I can completly leave IE behind. Excellent. Nice job. Will these feature be rolled out on all of ABC’s websites?

  13. This is some awesome technology. I’m not too big into sports, but the potential for this to be used in other mediums is great. Keep up the good work!

  14. I’m definitely one happy Mac-user and said so when I provided some feedback via the ESPN site. I think the video quality is more than adequate as well. I was surprised by the quality and how well it all worked.

  15. Gazzer says:

    Looks good. Just one question. Why doesn’t ESPN validate though? Most of the 330(!) validation errors seem unnecessary.

  16. Mike Dube says:

    Hi Mike,

    I had found a posting a while back by an ESPN employee who was familiar with the Motion project (maybe you) that stated that the technolgy behind Motion would be released as open source. I work at an educational TV studio and have a huge amount of content that I would love to pre-cache/push to users. If Motion’s code is something that will never be made public, is there an open source alternative that has a similar feature set? I know there are companies out there who offer this ASP-style, but coming from a school, hardware and bandwidth isn’t an issue. The application is. What do you think?

  17. ccctv says:

    This is great news – thanks Mike

  18. This is great news – thanks Mike
    BTW: firefox is best , would exceed Ms IE !

  19. Mike M says:

    I don’t know about anyone =else=, but i’m using firefox and i”m seeing NOTHING on the Motion Launcher…when i click on the links I see nothing except the commercials! This is followed by a blank page. I have flash player 7 installed. I have NO idea what the problem is, or the solution. I have a broadband connection, and am giving the videos PLENTY of time to load. As a matter of fact it’s saying “Playing” on the launcher, but again, NOTHING is being seen.

    Thank you.

  20. Sparky says:

    I’m not even seeing any video link on the ESPN site through Firefox…still works fine through IE…*sigh*

  21. WHOO! Works great for me! Thanks for the heads up!

  22. smith says:

    Works great for me too! – thanks Mike.
    100% support Firefox.

  23. espn motion for firefox launched

    Mike Davidson blogs on the new ESPN Motion for Firefox and some of the misconceptions about the previous, IE only, version. Check it out….

  24. Well, I’m right…for once

    Mike Davidson has announced that ESPN Motion is available for Firefox!

    I asked for this a few days ago when ESPN Motion for the Mac was released. Guess I wasn’t that far off the mark eh?

  25. ESPN Motion

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