Protest against Facebook's free basics

Protest against Facebook's free basics

Protest against Facebook's free basics

Members of Free Software Movement Karnataka (FSMK) along with students and children took part in the protest ‘#SayNoToFreeBasic’ in the City on Saturday.

Holding banners with messages such as ‘Say no to free basics by Facebook,’ ‘Save net neutrality - save internet,’ and ‘Do not let FB shut down the internet,’ 50-60 protestors gathered outside Forum Mall, Koramangala in support of net neutrality.

“While the internet is being closed down slowly, the current approach by Facebook, related to Free Basics, Google and their intervention in RailTel will definitely kill the openness of the internet. One sure victim will be the idea of Digital India as it will be forced to morph into an uglier version to factor in a closed Internet,” said Shijil, a volunteer from FSMK. 

The FSMK members urged the Union government to uphold the basics of net neutrality that are crucial to achieve a digital India and to create employment opportunities, besides avoiding encroachment of the cyberspace. 

“Free basics programme is a platform for corporate facebook. Start-ups and individuals should be worried about the development of free basics as it will be restricted to a few sites which FB will partner with. Also, the internet will turn biased, in turn affecting democracy.

Free basics is the rebranded version of the infamous internet.org,” Rameez Thonnaakal, another volunteer from Free Software Movement Karnataka, said. 

Hackathon
FSMK plans to hold a three-day hackathon in the City from January 11 to 13, to mark the birth anniversary of Aaron Swartz, an American computerprogrammer and Internet
activist.
 

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