Residents of the UK’s poorest and most remote areas are being encouraged to apply for free wireless internet access for their whole community.
Freerunner, a free public wifi network, has launched a fund to invest in free wifi hotpots around the country. Members of deprived or isolated communities in need of access will be able to apply for one of 50 connections until September 25, and can choose where they would like the hotspot to be, such as a local library, pub or youth centre.
Freerunner CEO Owen Geddes said: “People need Internet access to be able to function equally in today’s society, and that most basic right is not being given to them.”
Earlier in the year, the government announced that that every home in the UK would have broadband access by 2012.
“Freerunner can help rise to the challenge set out in the Digital Britain Report,” Geddes added. “We believe that it is now time for entrepreneurial commercial businesses to take the initiative and solve the problem. Our team is on stand-by to install an initial 50 hotspots across the UK no matter where they are, and are working to find commercial sponsors for more future locations.”
The successful applicants for the scheme will be contacted by 1 October, and Freerunner will then install the hotspots, which will allow community members to log on to the network at any time.
Freerunner is also working in conjunction with online charity fundraiser JustGiving.com, to give free wifi to 500 UK charity locations.