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Tuesday, December 29, 2015

India’s Net Neutrality Activists Don’t Want Facebook’s Free Internet

An Indian pavement dweller watches a movie on a mobile phone as others interact in Mumbai on June 3. (Indranil Mukherjee/AFP/Getty Images)

An Indian pavement dweller watches a movie on a mobile phone as others interact in Mumbai on June 3. (Indranil Mukherjee/AFP/Getty Images)

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg published an op-ed in The Times of India Monday defending his longtime initiative to bring free Internet access to the world’s most remote and impoverished places.

The effort, called Internet.org, caused a wide rift in the Indian public because it only allows free access to a limited set of websites, which net neutrality activists say gives those sites, including Facebook, unfair advantage. In response, the government asked Reliance Communications, Facebook’s partner in India, to halt the service until it can determine the fate of the country’s net neutrality rules.

Here & Now’s Meghna Chakrabarti speaks with Noah Kulwin of Re/code for a look at the impact of Facebook’s Internet.org service and the wider debate on its legality in India.

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Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

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