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  • A youth uses the "La Mochila" program in Havana, Cuba, Feb. 9, 2017.

    A youth uses the "La Mochila" program in Havana, Cuba, Feb. 9, 2017. | Photo: EFE

The project is part of the national plan to keep society informed and up to date on the latest technology as internet access gradually expands.

In the absence of movie-on-demand platforms like Netflix available in other countries, the Cuban government has kicked off an alternative to pirated films and television series on the island.

Launched Dec. 27, “La Mochila,” which means “The Backpack,” is a free distribution system of films, TV series, documentaries, music, video games and apps that are renewed weekly, so that Cubans can view what they could otherwise see only at the Youth Clubs — 610 state-run public computer centers around the country.

"La Mochila is a non-traditional television channel that allows viewers to program their own entertainment. It now offers 13 files with different high-quality productions suitable for all ages and for the whole family," Youth Club Communications Director Anamaris Solorzano told EFE.

This project, promoted by the Youth Club — which is managed by the Union of Young Communists and the Communications Ministry — imitates the basically illegal "The Package" format, a digital collection of audiovisual content, mainly foreign, that for $2.00 many Cubans acquire on a weekly basis.

“La Mochila” now seeks to compete with “The Package” by combining entertainment and culture in its weekly offering with documentaries, educational programs and cultural productions made in Cuba.

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