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    Posted on 28 Sep 2015

    Here's Why Some People Are Furious About Facebook's Indian Flag Profile Photos

    Update: "This product in no way connects to or registers support for,” a Facebook spokesperson told BuzzFeed India.

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Mark Zuckerberg recently changed their Facebook profile pictures to show their support for the "Digital India" campaign.

    Facebook even rolled out a feature which would make it easier for all users to change their profile pictures to the Digital India avatar.

    However, a look at the source code shows that the new profile pictures are linked to Facebook's "" initiative (recently renamed to "Free Basics by Facebook".)

    And some users have speculated that Facebook could use these new display pictures as proof of your support for "Free Basics".


    So why should you care?

    Marvel Studios

    Because some argue that “ Basics” is an anti-net neutrality initiative and, among other harmful side effects, has the potential to prevent new Indian startups from surviving and thriving.

    Facebook: nitesh.idesign

    Still don't understand?

    Free Basics will give Indians free access to Facebook and its partner sites, but charge them money to access sites that aren’t part of Facebook’s package.

    All India Bakchod

    Which means Facebook and its partner sites will have a natural monopoly on the internet, because why would you go to a website that charges you money when you can go to a similar one for free?

    Which will eventually cause all the smaller companies and startups to die.

    And that's why some people are angrily asking that we all think twice before opting in for a saffron-white-and-green profo.


    Choose wisely, netizens.

    Warner Bros.


    A Facebook spokesperson told BuzzFeed in an email:

    "There is absolutely no connection between updating your profile picture for digital India and registering support for An engineer mistakenly used the words " profile picture" as a shorthand name he chose for part of the code. But this product in no way connects to or registers support for We are changing the code today to eliminate any confusion."

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