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How to help the poor? With internet access says Mark Zuckerberg

The Facebook CEO preaches the need for greater internet access across the globe during a United Nations conference this Saturday.

Mark Zuckerberg claims “when communities are connected, we can lift them out of poverty” and that “we can and must do more” to accomplish this humanitarian goal.

Zuckerberg has said Facebook will be working alongside the U.N in an attempt to bring access to refugee camps. This will be a very welcomed alliance as the migrant crisis continues to play out in Europe.

The Facebook partnership will play its part in the U.N’s grand plan of eliminating ‘extreme poverty’ by the year 2030.

Though the U.N’s goal was only set officially on Friday, the ambition to increase internet access availability has been Zuckerberg’s for quite some time now.

In August 2013 was launched as part of an effort by Facebook to connect the 5 billion people of the world who still are without internet access. Zuckerberg comments that “Connecting the world is one of the fundamental challenges of our generation.” A challenge the owner of Facebook wishes to help conquer. However this project has been heavily criticized for violating net neutrality; raising concerns over the reasons for Facebook’s involvement in the U.N mission. That is, whether the contribution will be purely selfless, or an effort to increase the scope of the already controversial project.

Saturday’s speech, in which Zuckerberg posits the absolute importance connectivity will play in the U.N’s sustainable development goals, particularly encouraged the support of CEO’s, heads of state and leaders of civil society organisations in supporting the goals.

Alongside the U.N event, Zuckerberg posted a Facebook photo about his hopes of making universal internet access a “global priority”.

Zuckerberg writes “we have a simple message… By giving people access to the tools, knowledge and opportunities of the Internet, we can give a voice to the voiceless and power to the powerless.”

This weekend has been a pretty busy one for the Facebook CEO as not only was he scheduled to give the two speeches at the U.N on Saturday, he will also be host to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi today in a Q&A session at Facebook headquarters, which is speculated to be regarding the project as well.



About Kyran Wilson

Based in London, Kyran Wilson maintains a strong interest in scientific and technological news. In his free time, he enjoys political/philosophical discussion, cinema, mathematics and gaming.