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India Bans Free Facebook, Internet.org Over Net Neutrality Worries

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No more free internet

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has banned Internet.org and free access to the app in the country, citing that the initiatives violated the principles of Net Neutrality. Internet.org offered free access to several websites included local news, weather forecasts, Wikipedia and a number of other sites.

Net Neutrality rules basically says that no telecommunications provider should offer or charge discriminatory tariffs for data services on the basis of content.

Obviously Facebook head honcho Mark Zuckerburg is disappointed with the ruling, but he say’s he’s still committed to give everybody free access to the internet.

“We are committed to keep working to break down barriers to connectivity in India and around the world. Internet.org has many initiatives, and we will keep working until everyone has access to the internet,” he says, in a Facebook post.

Many critics of the program says that Facebook was putting up a walled garden of accessible web sites for the poor, pushing out other start-ups out of the picture who did not have as much money or resources as other companies.

Would you be in favor of blocking free Facebook and Internet.org here?

Source

John Nieves

John is a veteran technology and gadget journalist with more than 10 years of experience both in print and online. When not writing about technology, he frequently gets lost in the boonies playing soldier.

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4 Comments

  1. Yes, yes, a thousand times YES!

    If Facebook is not offered for free here and instead counts against whatever volume-based data plan you have, then the bandwidth situation will be better for everybody. Philippine telcos are blatant violators of net neutrality and nobody seems to care because hey, free Facebook.

    Nevermind that paying subscribers have to deal with congested networks/bandwidth consumed by people who only use Facebook (which is a notorious bandwidth hog) on top of illegal bugged SIM cards as well.

    1. Im not too sure free facebook (or internet.org, or freely-accessed websites, for that matter) is the reason why bandwidths are congested. Heck, i dont think they are congested at all!

      How long has it been since we shifted from UNLI data to volume-based mobile data? Have you noticed any improvements? what does that tell us?

      It’s all just marketing scheme so they can charge us more with what little service they provide.

      1. I switched from Globe 3 years ago after their free Facebook promo made my browsing over mobile data significantly slower and less reliable.

        Not that Smart itself is any better, but their free Facebook strips out images which marginally improves the bandwidth hit.

  2. Yes we should have net neutrality as well. It’s annoying that globe has spotify and smart/sun is shoving you with their spinner service. Same thing with each ISP’s “preferred” video streaming services. Stop limited volume data allocation and treat all sites/services equally.

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