Despite aggressive efforts to promote universal connectivity in India, Facebook just struck out. India’s telecom regulator has blocked the company’s Free Basics service as part of a ruling that supports net neutrality. The decision follows nearly a year of escalating conflict between Facebook and the country’s net neutrality activists, who argue Free Basics violates neutrality by favouring some services over others.
Showing disappointment over India’s decision on net neutrality, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has said he will not give up on breaking down connectivity barriers in India which he described as an important goal for his company. “While we’re disappointed with the decision, I want to personally communicate that we are committed to keep working to break down barriers to connectivity in India and around the world. Representative Image Internet.org has many initiatives, and we will keep working until everyone has access to the Internet,” he said.”Internet.org has many initiatives, and we will keep working until everyone has access to the Internet,” Zuckerberg said in a post on the Facebook yesterday, his first reaction to the ruling of Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) on net neutrality.
Backing net neutrality, TRAI yesterday barred operators from charging different rates for Internet access based on content, dealing a blow to Facebook’s controversial Free Basics and other such plans.
As per the regulations released, existing plans which are in contravention of the rules can continue for six months post which they need to be stopped.
Net neutrality recommendations spark mixed reactions. What do you think about it?
— Mrigank sinha (@sinhamrigank) August 14, 2015
— Rijit Sengupta (@RijitSengupta) February 9, 2016