About 60 digital rights groupsfrom several nations across the globe, including India, the U.S., the Netherlands, Germany, Brazil, Austria and others, have criticized Facebook’s Internet.org initiative, saying that it undermines net neutrality. Also Read - Internet groups claim that telecom operators are blocking Reddit and Telegram in India
In an open letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg , the groups, some of whom have worked in the area of providing connectivity to the poor, claimed that the initiative had been wrongly marketed as providing access to the full Internet, even though it provided access to a limited number of services that are approved by Facebook and local Internet service providers, reported PC World. Also Read - Indian telecom companies including Reliance Jio blocking websites including Soundcloud, Telegram
Through Internet.org, Facebook and some other firms aim to extend internet connectivity to the underprivileged around the world. However, the program, which was criticized in India for creating “walled gardens,” offers only select websites and services, including those of Facebook, at no data charges to users. Also Read - Reliance Jio may be blocking proxy and VPN websites and violating net neutrality: Report
It has been launched in some countries in Asia, Latin America and Africa.