CPI(M) bets on Social Media, Favours Net Neutrality

By: Gizbot Bureau

In a bid to attract youths, the CPI(M) today said it aims to increase its reach through social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter and also passed a resolution in favour of 'net neutrality', an issue that of late has sparked debate over a need to maintain equal Internet access for all.

CPI(M) bets on Social Media, Favours Net Neutrality

The party's official page on Facebook with over 52,000 likes is growing since it started two years back, said functionary Prabir Purkayastha, who takes care of IT and social media-related activities of the party, after presenting a resolution on protecting 'net neutrality' at the 21st Congress of the CPI(M) here today.

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Another functionary, who is involved in the IT wing of the party, said the reach of Facebook page messages has crossed one million mark during the past few days after the six-day Congress, that kick started on April 14.

CPI(M) bets on Social Media, Favours Net Neutrality

However, Purkaystha said his party does not believe in inorganic 'reach' growth on social media network. "Unlike BJP and other parties, we do not intend to grow artificially.

We have no intention of hiring an advertising agency and promoting our Facebook page or by other inorganic means to reach people in social media," Purkayastha told PTI. The official twitter account of CPI(M) has over 7,000 followers.

The back-end workers of the party are busy updating Facebook page and tweeting messages as and when some development takes place during the congress.

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Purkayastha said there are so many young people in CPI(M) using social media and the party is trying to see that it can reach out to them through this platform. "Social media is so dynamic. The growth or reach we want has to be organic," he said.

Purkayastha said the Left On the issue of net neutrality, Purkayastha said the Left party is in favour of it. The CPI(M) supports the ongoing struggle for net neutrality and strongly opposes the efforts of telecom companies to violate net-neutrality, he stated.

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"The 21st Congress of the CPI(M) calls on the people to defeat all attempts to violate net-neutrality and limit people's access to internet.

It also calls on the government and the regulator to define the internet as a public utility," said the party's resolution which was passed today.

The resolution said the telecom companies argue that they need more money to build infrastructure and meet the demands of new internet based services. Hence, they claim, they need to violate net-neutrality.

According to the resolution, the telecom companies do not disclose that the revenues from their data services are growing rapidly -- and grew by 100 per cent in 2014 alone -- and are more than sufficient to build additional infrastructure.

"Violating net neutrality, as proposed, will only provide telecom companies a perverse incentive not to expand their infrastructure. The more the scarcity, the more the money they can extract from internet service providers and websites," the resolution added.

Source: PTI

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