This week, India shut the door on Free Basics, a Facebook program that offers free, limited Internet access to people in the developing world. While some activists are hailing the decision as a victory for net neutrality, proponents of zero-rating programs like Free Basics note that 80% of Indians still lack Internet access, and shutting down Facebook’s offering won’t help get them online. Evan and Berin discuss the regulator’s decision, and ask: why didn’t the regulator actually address the challenge of getting Indians online? Can zero-rating actually provide an on-ramp to the full Internet?
February 12, 2016