Dropping a hint as to what could be the important points of discussion when Facebooks’ founder Mark Zuckerberg meets country’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, Facebook has renamed its anti net-neutrality app Internet.org to ‘Free Basics’.
The announcement was made at the Facebook Headquarters in Menlo Park, California, by Chris Daniels, VP of Internet.org, in the presence of a small group of Indian journalists.
In a Facebook blog post it mentioned, “We’re making this change to better distinguish the Internet.org initiative from the programs and services we’re providing, including Free Basics.”
Facebook’s internet.org has faced lot of criticism in India. There have been massive net neutrality debates and public outrage. Some big names like NDTV, Cleartrip, Airtel, Rahul Gandhi and some properties of Times Group favoured net-neutrality.
Amidst the debate, Facebook had opened its free Internet access site Internet.org in May, for online content and application developers to join their service.
Mark Zuckerberg emphasised that the company has improved the security and privacy of Internet.org, which will support HTTPS web services as well.
Connectivity isn’t an end in itself. It’s what people do with it that matters. We hope the improvements we’ve made will help people in getting connected, so that our whole global community can benefit together.
He further added that internet.org is an open platform for people to choose the apps they want.
Internet.org is an open platform offered by Facebook across 19 developing countries, including India, to enable easy access of selected apps and app-based services to people at zero cost. In India, it has partnered with Reliance Communications to offer free access to about 30 websites.
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