Facebook to Assist In Bringing Internet to Refugee Camps
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg promised that his company will make every possible effort to make internet accessible to refugee camps. Recently while speaking at the United Nations Private Sector Forum, Zuckerberg said Facebook would work with the intergovernmental body to make the internet available to those who wouldn't be able to use it.
The New York Times reported that Zuckerberg also noted that if more people will be online it will be beneficial to Facebook itself. But Zuckerberg didn’t tell how and when internet was coming to the refugee camps.
“It's one thing to say we should connect the world. The real trick is how. There's no simple solution or silicon bullet”, Zuckerberg acknowledged.
Although Zuckerberg didn't specify exact details of how, when, or where Facebook would start to offer internet to refugees first, the company it has been found that the company’s Internet.org initiative has been working on the matter since past few years.
The UN's General Assembly building has this week displayed parts from Facebook's internet-enabling drone, a huge creation the size of a passenger jet. According to Zuckerberg, the drone will fly around the world, beaming Wi-Fi signal down to areas that have sparse internet access.
Zuckerberg said internet access if very essential for the developing world, but some critics have criticized Internet.org’s schemes by saying that it funnels users into preferred apps and services.
Facebook earlier this year also changed its approach by allowing companies into Internet.org's walled garden. It said that it had not intended to pick and choose services but it was previously not sustainable to offer the whole internet for free.
"Nine out of 10 rural Africans don't have electricity," Zuckerberg said. "Governments can make the difference. This is why we support initiatives like President Obama's Power Africa plan and the bipartisan Electrify Africa Act in Congress, as well as the African Development Bank's investments in renewable energy."
"Where governments lay the foundation, the private sector can build," he said.
But Silicon Valley must "do far more for those most marginalized, those trapped in poverty, and those beyond or on the edge of the network," Zuckerberg and Bono wrote.