Facebook Reaffirms Support for Internet.org in India

Undeterred by criticism, Facebook seems committed to expanding its Internet.org program in India and elsewhere.

Internet.org works with mobile operators to create free access to key applications without charge, at least for limited periods of time, in an effort to allow new users to experience the value of the Internet and Internet access.

Some have sharply criticized the program as a violation of network neutrality rules, using the logic that the program “does not treat all apps the same.”

Supporters counter that the program is not different than any other retail policy that offers limited-time promotions, coupons, discounts or incentives to buy or try any consumer product.

The program already has proven to be a useful way of providing exposure to the value of the value of the whole Internet and has stimulated sustainable demand for Internet access.

As practiced by Internet.org, the whole program is voluntary: consumers pay nothing to use the apps. Internet service providers pay nothing to make the offer and Internet.org apps and Facebook pay nothing to operators to enable the access.

Internet.org "does not violate the principles of net neutrality", said Kevin Martin, Facebook VP for Mobile and Global Access Policy."We have no program to withdraw internet.org from India where we provide the platform with Reliance Communications."
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