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Mark Zuckerberg Defends Facebook Free Basics As India Regulators Clamp Down

Mark Zuckerberg elaborates further. Facebook’s Mark ZuckerbergZuckerberg has vehemently defended its goals behind providing free basic Internet services in India.

He dismissed the comments made by critics that the free basics service is actually a “walled garden” which is in Facebook’s hands. As per Mark Zuckerberg’s comments in the Times of India, Internet access can be equated to education and health provision in India. He claimed that it could assist in relieving poverty of about one billion people who are not online.

He wrote “Instead of welcoming Free Basics as an open platform that will partner with any telco, and allows any developer to offer services to people for free, they claim – falsely – that this will give people less choice. Instead of recognising that Free Basics fully respects net neutrality, they claim – falsely – the exact opposite.”

The Free Basics is an offering of Facebook’s Internet.org campaign.

It provides certain basic apps which include travel, weather and news for smartphone users across developing countries like Africa, Asia and Latin America. Facebook will partner with local mobile operators and make the data for accessing those services free.

Zuckerberg described that he met with farmers Ganesh and Bharati Nimbalkar in the western Indian state of Maharashtra. He emphasised that Free Basics had enabled them access online weather tools as well as commodity prices on Reuters Market Light.

This assisted them in securing better deals leading them to invest in new crops and livestock.

Filed in: News

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