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Facebook Promises to Bring Internet Access to Refugees

On Saturday, Facebook's ( FB ) Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg made a promise that his company will assist in bringing widespread internet access to refugee camps. His announcement came while he was attending a lunch hosted by the United Nations Private Sector Forum.

Zuckerberg said that Facebook would work with the intergovernmental of the U.N. in order to make internet available to people would not otherwise be able to have access to it; he did not give any specific details as to how, when, or even where this internet access would start.

This internet access promise seems to be an expansion of the tech giant's Internet.org initiative, a program that was developed to combat limited worldwide internet access. Zuckerberg believes that the internet is an "enabler of human rights" and a "force for peace," but his Internet.org plan has had its fair share of criticism. Developers based in India have pulled out of the platform because of a belief that Internet.org violates net neutrality. In response, Facebook dramatically altered its approach earlier this year, so instead of directing users to favored apps and services, all companies will have fair access. It's now known as Free Basics.

In a New York Times piece covering the lunch meeting, Zuckerberg said that "it's not all altruism," implying that internet access based through Facebook would be beneficial to the company's bottom line. "We all benefit when we are more connected."

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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