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Ethiopia has blocked social media sites as new Oromo protests hit the country
Ethiopia has again blocked access to the internet in the wake of violent protests in the Oromo region and throughout the East African country, Abdi Latif Dahir reports for Quartz. "In Chelenko town in Oromia region, media reports noted the killing of 16 people aged between 15 and 60 years, including family members who were harvesting sorghum on a farm. The family was reportedly not aware of the initial demonstrations in a nearby village, where locals blamed the killing of a prominent member of the community by the controversial Somali special forces known as the Liyu. This was followed by heightened ethnic tension in campuses, where students were allegedly killed at the hands of security forces.

As such, from Dec. 12, internet users in Ethiopia started mentioning that they couldn’t access several social media sites including Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. Moses Karanja, a doctoral candidate at University of Toronto and researcher at the Citizen Lab, said network scans on the state-owned operator Ethio Telecom confirmed that the websites were inaccessible. The government has a monopoly over the provision of mobile and internet services, and users couldn’t access these sites without using virtual private networks."
otf  ethiopia  access  shutdown  social  blackout  africa 
2 days ago by dmcdev
The Internet Society and NetBlocks Team up to #KeepItOn
Brookings estimated that in 2016, internet shutdowns cost countries a combined roughly $2.4 billion USD. Such estimates are rough, though, and are not calculated regularly. In this context, the Internet Society and NetBlocks have teamed up to develop a new tool to measure the economic hit a country takes when it decides to shut down the internet. "The Cost of Shutdowns Tool (COST) will be a data-driven online tool that will enable anyone – including journalists, researchers, advocates, policy makers, businesses, and many others – to quickly and easily estimate the economic cost of Internet disruptions. The tool will cover shutdowns affecting social media, key content platforms and full Internet blackouts. Development of this online and mobile platform has started, and we expect an early functioning platform to be available by summer 2018." - Internet Society
otf  shutdown  blackout  access 
17 days ago by dmcdev
How Pakistan blocked news outlets, social media sites, and IM apps amidst protests - @OpenObservatory
OONI analyzes how the Pakistani government blocked access to several social media and news outlets last week amid violent Islamist protests in the capital of Islamabad. Demonstrators were demanding the resignation of Federal Law Minister Zahid Hamid after he failed to include reference to the Prophet Muhammad in a revised edition of the country's electoral oath - an error protesters deemed 'blasphemous.' OONI data "confirm[s] the DNS-based blocking of Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram...[and] the DNS blocking of 14 news websites, as well as the censorship of applications including Facebook Messenger, Telegram, and WhatsApp’s web interface. All of these censorship events were temporarily implemented last weekend, and are no longer in place."
otf  pakistan  social  censorship  access  blackout  southasia  protest 
18 days ago by dmcdev
The Migration of Political Internet Shutdowns
Five years ago, Egypt ordered its country's internet service providers to cut off all international access to the internet. This blackout was soon mimicked in Bahrain, Libya, and Syria, part of the backlash to the pro-democracy protests that became known as the Arab Spring. Looking back, David Belson of Oracle Dyn reflects on how global "internet resiliency" has fared since then. "Has connection diversity increased, and does that lead to a potential decrease in vulnerability to Internet shutdown?" he asks. "[T]he most interesting observation was the ‘migration’ of politically-motivated nationwide Internet disruptions. The outages that occurred during the Arab Spring time frame were largely concentrated in North Africa and the Middle East, shifting over the last several years into sub-Saharan Africa. This shift has not gone unnoticed, with online publication Quartz also highlighting the growing trend of African governments blocking the Internet to silence dissent, and the United Nations taking note as well. In addition, as these shutdowns are now a more regular occurrence, both in Africa and in other areas around the world, it is also worth looking at the financial impact that they have on affected countries."
otf  shutdown  access  blackout 
18 days ago by dmcdev
Disney Ends Ban on Los Angeles Times Amid Fierce Backlash - The New York Times
News organizations join critics’ groups to counter the company’s move to bar Times reviewers from screenings over the newspaper’s tough coverage of Disney’s dealings with Anaheim, Calif.
disney  blackout  business  latimes  nytimes 
5 weeks ago by xer0x
New Report Suggets That Internet Shutdowns In Afrika Cost Approximately $237 Million Since 2015
According to a new report by the Collaboration on International ICT Policy for East and Southern Africa (CIPESA), Internet shutdowns in Sub-Saharan Afrika have cost approximately $237 million since 2015, This cost is calculated using a newly developed framework...The report calculates the losses which each country studied lost during the duration of Internet shutdown. It also reveals that: The economic cost of an Internet disruption persist far beyond the days on which the disruption occurs because the disruption unsettle supply chains and have systemic effects, harming efficiency throughout the economy; Internet disruptions, however short-lived, undermine economic growth, disrupt the delivery of critical services, erode business confidence, and raise a country’s risk profile; [and] Shutdowns have a high economic impact at micro and macro levels, adversely affecting the livelihoods of citizens, undermining the profitability of business enterprises, and reducing the GDP and competitiveness of countries that implement them. - iAfrikan News
otf  africa  shutdown  access  blackout  economics  cost 
10 weeks ago by dmcdev
Togo latest country to lose web access as regimes increasingly shut down Internet to control protests
"After 50 years of repressive rule by the same family, the people of Togo rebelled. More than 100,000 protesters filled the streets of the small West African nation this month.

The regime responded with a strong-arm tactic that has become increasingly popular among the world's autocracies: It shut down the Internet, making it almost impossible for its opponents to use social media to organize.

On Sunday, for a sixth consecutive day, the shutdown was still in effect. The Togolese people had no access to Facebook, WhatsApp or any other Internet services on their mobile phones – the main way in which Africans gain access to the Internet – although there were reports late on Sunday night that service was finally being restored." - Geoffrey York, The Globe and Mail
otf  africa  togo  shutdown  blackout  access 
september 2017 by dmcdev
Taking Down the Internet Has Never Been Easier
"Is there a reason why the Internet is so vulnerable? Actually, there are many, and taking steps to remain protected is crucial," writes Bogdan Botezatu for DarkReading.
otf  shutdown  access  blackout 
august 2017 by dmcdev
Should Technical Actors Play a Political Role in the Internet Age?
"The internet has brought about a fundamental change in which actors are expected to shoulder what responsibility, for which public interest issues. Specifically, the power of technical internet actors to enter political debates is changing as the internet becomes essential to the basic functioning of society. Still, blocking certain governments from essential internet resources – like IP addresses – is an unprecedented act, and not without risk or controversy. Two concerns stand out, in particular: first, should a technical organization take on such a political role? Second, would the proposed policy undermine the overall technical stability of the internet?" - Corinne Cath for Council on Foreign Relations
otf  ig  governance  shutdown  blackout  access  afrinic 
june 2017 by dmcdev
Internet censorship in India is on the rise
"The nation has shut down the internet in various regions 20 times in the first five months of this year, according to a report from Human Rights Watch. Four of those blackouts have taken place this month, all in states where violent protests took place.

That represents a dramatic uptick from last year, when 31 shutdowns were recorded in total, and an even greater increase since 2012 -- which saw only three shutdowns." - Rishi Iyengar, CNN
otf  india  shutdown  access  censorship  blackout  asia  southasia 
june 2017 by dmcdev
#India: 20 Internet Shutdowns in 2017 - @hrw
"State governments have imposed 20 internet shutdowns so far in 2017, including by four states in June. Shutdowns in response to campaigns on social media and mobile mass messaging applications spreading false and even incendiary information have frequently been disproportionate. The authorities have failed to follow legal procedures, undermined stated objectives of preventing rumors or panic, and ordered unnecessary shutdowns such as to prevent cheating in examinations.

'Indian authorities’ concerns over the misuse of the internet and social media should not be the default option to prevent social unrest,' said Meenakshi Ganguly, [Human Rights Watch] South Asia director. 'The lack of transparency and failure to explain these shutdowns only further the perception that they are meant to suppress nonviolent reporting and criticism of the government.'" - Human Rights Watch
otf  india  asia  southasia  shutdown  access  blackout  censor  censorship 
june 2017 by dmcdev
Ethiopia Imposes Nationwide Internet Blackout
"On May 30 at 3pm local time, Ethiopians found themselves unable to access the Internet. The blackout appears to be country-wide. It appears that Ethiopian authorities imposed the nationwide Internet blackout in order to prevent “leaking of exam questions on Facebook” ahead of secondary school exams set to be administered over the next two weeks. Twenty-four hours after the blackout, Deputy Communication Minister of Ethiopia Zadig Abraha told AFP that mobile data also had been deactivated." - Endalk, Global Voices Advox
otf  ethiopia  africa  blackout  shutdown  access  bypassafrica  censorship 
june 2017 by dmcdev

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