By Aastha Anupriya
Marc Andreessen is quite an accomplished man. He co-founded the VC firm Andreessen Horowitz, Netscape and co-authored Mosaic. He sits on the board of directors of eBay, HP and most importantly, Facebook. Facebook, which has made its way into the simplest of social processes. Heck, entire student bodies function over Facebook.
Much ado for what?
In other news, after many a round of full-page advertising and widespread petitioning, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) put a full stop on differential rates for data services, precisely what Facebook was very cunningly calling for.
Most recently, Mr Andreessen has also attained the status of being pitifully uninformed of some very obvious history and annoyingly insensitive to the rights of humans – lots of humans, all being modern-day citizens of a country as large and as dynamic as India.
Marc Andreessen was not only aghast that Facebook couldn’t trap the people under Free Basics , he also went on to tweet about how “anti-colonialism has been economically catastrophic for the Indian people for decades”. I am offended.
I am all but questioning my own existence right now. I’m not just annoyed, but I’m deeply saddened and disturbed too looking at how the functioning of a country isn’t much more than a business decision for some.
“Why stop now?”
This gentleman wanted to know “Why stop now?” Well, sir, India bade goodbye to colonialism decades ago and has indeed been moving on ever since, slowly but steadily. The population is enormous and scattered, but collectively values its rights. It knows when a complete foreign organisation attempts to monetise, and hence destroys the essence of choice.
Here, I’m talking about Facebook which over a decent period of time couldn’t tire of reminding me how 99 of my friends had signed in favour of Free Basics. I remember taking time out to individually judge each one of them. Well, justice prevailed. All hail the TRAI!
Though he did later repeatedly apologise and retract his statement, we had had enough time to realise just how correct we were in not voting for Free Basics.
I love Facebook, I spend a lot of time on it but I’m glad that we only voted for ourselves.
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Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.