“Net neutrality” simply put is “the principle that Internet service providers should enable access to all content and applications regardless of the source, and without favouring or blocking particular products or websites”. While the reason behind Internet.org or free basics is to provide internet to those who could not afford it. But as every external force disrupts the market, this also does the same. Better internet access would definitely improve the lives of people but when mis-interpreted can lead to highly non-competitive and a pro-veteran market.
Mark Zuckerberg’s take on Freebasics is that, Facebook wants people who live without the internet just because they could not afford it, should be able to have access to it. Since the internet is huge they can’t afford to provide the entire internet for free. Yes Mark that’s true but cherry picking the websites to be on the platform is like fighting discrimination by discrimination itself.
India today is the land for startups with total FDI crossing the billion dollar mark. Facebook today has the largest user base that no social media platform has. But using this to the disadvantage of those who don’t make it to the facebook’s list of Free Basics is completely unjustified. Now even if Facebook allows a pretty transparent mechanism for choosing the websites one would definitely need to ponder over the ability of startups to compete with already established brands to gain equal access.
Now when facebook is for free and twitter not, then may be there will never be any other “Facebook” due to resistance to change to any other platform just because facebook is included in the free basics and while other platform is not.
This gift from Mark Zuckerberg would eventually turn out to be gag toy hitting you. This type of lobbying though seems to be harmless but is quite dangerous in its hindsight. Once users are lured by the free internet access, it will be very difficult to reverse the trend.
But its not just Facebook alone in this quest for perpetual existence, Google joins the race by its Google Weblite.
Google has launched Google weblite with a fair purpose of providing fast browsing even on slow internet connection. Though One might ponder what exactly is fishy about it?
Google being the god of data is hacking into your lives at every moment, from the time you log in into something using google, to your browser history to the cookies stored in your laptop. But the situation does not end here. Google weblite will now host every website that you browse on its own server to provide faster internet and all the information will flow from the website server to the user with Google sitting in between and refining content. Now imagine the level of privacy intrusion. All this information would then be used for Google own purposes. As users of Internet, not all of us understand the importance of our data and thus we get befooled by such services.
While a number of people would have similar concerns with Google weblite and they might have also raised their voice against Google but why is it that we don’t find anything against google? maybe we should stop GOOGLING to search..