Egypt goes offline as government attempts to squelch Facebook and Twitter protests

first_imgMassive protests in Egypt have caused the local government to take extraordinary measures to try to maintain some semblance of control: they’ve taken the internet offline, snipping all international connections that lead out of Egypt with oppressive bureaucratic scissors.According to a report from Renesys, internet connectivity to Egypt was suspended at shortly after midnight today local time, “the virtually simultaneous withdrawal of all routes to Egyptian networks in the Internet’s global routing table.”Vodafone has also confirmed that all mobile operators in Egypt have been asked by the government to suspend services. In fact, Twitter reports that Vodafone said they had absolutely no say in the matter, and believed they had “no choice” but to shut off mobile broadband and voice for customers “in selected areas.”What the heck is going on in Egypt? It’s all part of a government attempt to stamp down on huge protests that are being scheduled for today over social networks like Facebook and micro-blogging services like Twitter, where the #jan25 hash tag is gaining momentum as a way to talk about what’s happening in Egypt right now.The fact that Facebook and Twitter were being used as communication method to encourage and organize anti-government protests caused the shutdown. That said, it is starting to look likely from foreign reports that not only was this shutdown not successful in stopping protests, but the entire Egyptian government may be on the point of toppling.Read more at Renesyslast_img

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