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Wikipedia Zero – sending knowledge out to the world via SMS


We had no idea that the Wikipedia Foundation offers the encyclopedia’s knowledge free of charge to the world, via the Wikipedia Zero initiative. The idea is for the Foundation to partner with mobile phone operators and avoid people having to pay data charges for the information. It’s obviously targeted to people in the developing countries, who don’t have access to hardware, services and funds to pay for Internet access.


There are two types of service on offer, mobile, which provides a slightly richer page, and zero, which is basic text only with no images. The phone operator zero rates the cost of delivering this content, and in return gets a banner image marketing their services. The plan is to expand this from English to multiple language versions. Nice idea.

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