Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) intentions to build a global platform to allow free access for less represented populations is definitely laudable. The internet.org has become a glowing standard of the digital reach technology companies can bring to the common man, if they so decide to do so. The platform has now begun its services in the 11 country, after its launch in Pakistan.
However, amongst all of this humanness behind the launch of the platform, there is something amiss.
What does internet.org do?
As CEO of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) Mark Zuckerberg never tires of saying that the platform is to become the all-inclusive online tool allowing women and remote regions to become part of the internet revolution. The service allows subscribers to access 17 services. By choosing the internet service provider who is willing to support internet.org, like Telenor, in Pakistan, users can access all of these 17-listed services such as weather, news, Bing search and Facebooks Messenger services free of cost.
This bouquet of selected free services gives operators and the customers an unfair advantage. In India, where the service was launched a few months ago has seen many of the partners withdraw from the platform.
The issue is now snowballing into a major controversy as it does make Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) and its partners to become the ‘gatekeeper’ of internet services. The social network has attempted to arrest the controversy by asking third party app developers to build apps for this platform.
However, here too Facebook Inc has ensured that it remains in control, by ensuring the developers do not add Voice Over Internet Protocol services or have a HTTPS standard. It has also given operators the right to reject the services, without a second thought, if they do not like the apps.
Despite Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) CEO’s altruistic claims the approach does appear odd.