Step toward digital equality

Mon 08 Feb 2016, 17:57:41

Regulator TRAI Sides With Net Neutrality

Data packs that currently offer discounted rates for some content will not be yanked and customers can use them till they expire, said the regulator, adding that it is the "convenience of users" that is the over-riding concern. In a huge setback for Facebook's free internet scheme, telecom regulator TRAI has banned differential pricing for India. In partnership with Reliance Telecom in India, Face book planned to offer pared-down web services on mobile phones, along with access to Face book's own social network and messaging services, without any charge. They argue that if the Face book scheme is allowed, it would confer huge gate-keeping powers on the online giant, allowing it to decide what content users access - and that content would be either its own or that of its partners. Ban) will disallow any program or project which works on the architecture of differential pricing," said the regulator, stressing that "content agnostic" access to the internet is the operating principle, though it added that data charges can be dropped during public emergencies like flooding.

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