What is Internet.org ? (video)

Internet.org is a partnership between social networking services company Facebook and six mobile phone companies (Samsung, Ericsson, MediaTek, Opera Software, Reliance and Qualcomm) that plans to bring affordable access to selected Internet services to less developed countries by increasing efficiency, and facilitating the development of new business models around the provision of Internet access.

It has been criticized for violating net neutrality and favoring Facebook’s own services over its rivals. An Indian journalist, in his reply to Mark Zuckerberg’s article defending Internet.org in India, criticized Internet.org as “being just a Facebook proxy targeting India’s poor” as it provides restricted Internet access to Reliance Telecom’s subscribers in India. Until April 2015, Internet.org users could access (for free) only a few websites, and Facebook’s role as gatekeeper in determining what websites were in that list was criticized for violating net neutrality. However, in early May 2015, Facebook announced that the Internet.org Platform would be opened to websites that met its criteria.

Internet.org was launched on August 20, 2013. At the time of launch, Facebook’s founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg released a ten-page whitepaper he had written elaborating on the vision. In the paper, he wrote that Internet.org was a further step in the direction of Facebook’s past initiatives, such as Facebook Zero, to improve Internet access for people around the world. He also said that “connectivity is a human right.” A TechCrunch article about the launch compared Internet.org with Google’s Project Loon.

Photo: Internet.org

About Abhinaya Ghimire

Abhinaya Ghimire is a tech savvy person who loves keeping information about ICT and media. Graduated from Kathmandu University in Bachelor of Media Stuides, he is equally involved in making short films, documentaries and also has his own photo blog www.abhieg.wordpress.com

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