India Prime Minister, N. Modi visited Mark Zuckerberg in Silicon Valley this sunday. What did they talked about? In private, probably about Internet.org in India. Discover why in this Bunkr presentation! In our Bunkr presentation, you will read our analysis of the situation and see why we support Internet.org or not. Connectivity is the biggest challenge for Innovation in the emerging markets, especially in India but does it have to be at all cost? What is the importance of net neutrality in this case?
What is Internet.org?
Internet.org is a program created by Facebook to give access to Internet for free. Indeed, Facebook sponsored thia program in partnerships with phone carriers and selected internet services to allow users to navigate on their websites and apps free of charge.
Indeed, 2 human beings over 3 are not connected to Internet. And if Facebook today has more than 1 billion daily active users, Facebook has a penetration rate around 90% in most developped countries amongs the 13-60 years old. In a word, if Facebook wants to have new users, the social network first needs more internet users. So yes, the main mission of Mark Zuckerberg today is to work for a world « more open and connected » working to connect more people to Internet and so to Facebook.
Just before meeting N. Modi in California on Sunday, Mark Zuckerberg was in NY on Saturday to speak at the United Nations headquarter about the importance of global connectivity adding that he believed the internet was a ‘force for peace’ and a « human right ».
The Net Neutrality challenge in India
But even if Internet.org looks like a wonderful project promoted like philantropic in the USA, in India it faced a big polemic. Indeed it actualy started with a polemic about Airtel Zero, a similar program launched by the biggest internet provider in India. By not making users pay to navigate on certain websites or apps, it was perceived like a violation of net neutrality which claims that every data should be treated and technically transmitted equally. A big spontaneous movement emerged against this violation under the tag #SaveTheInternet. But then beyond the polemic that forced Flipkart, the indian ecommerce leader to get out from this partnership with Airtel Zero, Internet.org was then also criticized. Mark Zuckerberg himself had to intervene and defend Internet.org and Facebook massively communicated to its users in India to promote Internet.org.
If you like philosophy, you will see that philosophers can help us to understand this 21st century problem in our Bunkr presentation and analysis.