Egypt: With No Internet Access, Users Get Creative

Filed as News on January 31, 2011 10:26 pm

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Unable to access the Internet after the their dictator shut down access nationwide,  Egyptian citizens are coming up with alternative ways to organize themselves despite being digitally cut off from each other.

“They’re using old-fashioned word of mouth,” says Neil Hicks, policy advisor of the non-profit advocacy group Human Rights First. “They’re aware of the possibilities of surveillance if they use these technologies. So they get on a motorbike or car, and go to the next neighborhood and arrange things.”

A widely circulated document has served as a manual; it has illustrated instructions for everything from basic communications, to what to wear to a protest, to how to minimize injury while being attacked by police, says Hicks. (USA Today)

While it may notsound as “cool” as finding ways to hack around the system, bloggers may want to consider alternative methods of communication (like radio) just in case their government decides to implement something similar within their own country.

Although there are Egyptians finding ways around the blanket cut off via satellite phones or from landlines (who are dialing into free servers), hopefully political leaders in other nations can convince the Egyptian dictator to lift the cut off in the near future.

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