Why Does It Matter
Believe it or not, the Internet is critical for the spread of democracy. It is essential to free societies. The United Nations Human Rights Council passed a resolution that “condemns unequivocally measures to intentionally prevent or disrupt access to or dissemination of information online.”
On their website dedicated to white space internet, Microsoft said, "With affordable Internet access, 4.2 billion more people could communicate, find jobs, and pursue local and global passions. That’s where the Affordable Access Initiative comes in. With Microsoft support, our partners are breaking new ground to connect the world." That's something we can not only get behind, it's something we are willing to participate in.
In even the most developed countries in the world, there are still huge gaps in internet access. Unfortunately, fixed, regular, dependable broadband access is unaffordable (or just plain unavailable) for some 3.9 billion people around the globe. In Haiti and Nepal, for example, internet access is almost entirely through cellular technology, which is not only slow, but incredibly expensive. Less than 18% of Haitians have access to the internet just once per year by using SIM card based access or mobile phones, and the numbers are worse when you look at regular access. We aim to change that. To empower communities.
As a humanitarian organization, our core mission mandates we seek out, develop, and fund projects that help people succeed in life. Today, the Internet plays a heavy role in the success of any community. And we want to make a difference by using this emerging disruptive technology.