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What is Internet.org?

What is Internet.org?
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What is Internet.org.Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has defended his company’s Internet.org programme.

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has defended his company’s Internet.org programme.Zuckerberg said that network operators shouldn’t “discriminate and limit access” to all services. However, on the implications of Internet.org for Net Neutrality, he said, “For people who are not on the internet though, having some connectivity and some ability to share is always much better than having no ability to connect and share at all. That’s why programs like Internet.org are important and can co-exist with net neutrality regulations.”

nternet.org is a partnership between social networking service company Facebook and seven mobile phone companies (Samsung, Ericsson, MediaTek, Microsoft, Opera Software, Reliance and Qualcomm) that aims to bring affordable Internet access to everybody by increasing affordability, increasing efficiency, and facilitating the development of new business models around the provision of Internet access.

Facebook and Reliance Communications are making the internet available across India through the launch of the Internet.org app and free basic services. This is the first time the Internet.org app will be available in the region. A TOI article says that Internet.org isn’t about internet for all, but essentially about Facebook for all, along with a few non-profit services thrown in to give it the appearance of philanthropy, and maybe a few co-opted competitors to make it appear as if it isn’t about Facebook only.

It’s important for access to knowledge, services and free speech, as well as freedom and ease of doing business online, access to Internet should be neutral: All sites must be equally accessible; The same access speed at the telco/ISP level for each (independent of telco selection); and The same data cost for access to each site (per KB/MB). But, services such as Internet.org and Airtel Zero are being cited as examples of social entrepreneurship to empower millions of people with Internet as a conduit for education and telemedicine among other offerings.

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