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Activist Communique: Updated! Egypt -- how YOU can foil a nationwide Internet shut-down

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First off, here is some background on how Egypt shut down the Internet in the first place in a move termed "unprecedented in Internet history.": Egypt: A black hole in the Internet

This is also a good article on the role of Internet proxies in helping organize the movement in Egypt: With Twitter and Facebook blocked in Egypt, protesters turn to proxies.

I want to note that on Sunday, there is news that: Egypt has shut down Al Jazeera bureau

The deets: "The Egyptian authorities are revoking the Al Jazeera Network's licence to broadcast from the country, and will be shutting down its bureau office in Cairo, state television has said.

"The information minister [Anas al-Fikki] ordered ... suspension of operations of Al Jazeera, cancelling of its licences and withdrawing accreditation to all its staff as of today," a statement on the official Mena news agency said on Sunday.

In a statement, Al Jazeera said it strongly denounces and condemns the closure of its bureau in Cairo by the Egyptian government. The network received notification from the Egyptian authorities on Sunday morning.

"Al Jazeera has received widespread global acclaim for their coverage on the ground across the length and breadth of Egypt," the statement said. 

An Al Jazeera spokesman said that the company would continue its strong coverage regardless.


And here is an updated list on how you can help keep the information about the uprising in Egypt flowing.

1: How to Foil a Nationwide Internet Shut Down

Here are the deets: "The Egyptian government cut internet connections across their country to silence protests, leaving nearly all of its citizens without online access. But they weren't entirely successful. When governments shut down broadband and mobile connections, here's what to do.

What's Going on Now?

If you haven't been keeping up with the story, here's the gist. Citizens across Egypt are protesting their government in unprecedented numbers, and it's believed that the Internet played a major role in the protests. So what did the Egyptian government do? First, they started blocking domain name servers (DNS) -- the phone book of the internet -- but citizens circumvented this limitation by using proxy servers. In reaction, the government cut broadband connections to the web and forced mobile providers to do the same. For more details, read Gizmodo's take on how Egypt turned off the Internet. The result: a nationwide Internet blackout that's preventing Egyptian citizens from communicating online. To put it bluntly, this sucks. But it's still not good enough. We're going to look at how Egyptian citizens can (and are) circumventing the problem."

Please read the rest of the article for way more tech stuff and how you can help

2: Also, Vancouver's HootSuite is helping people in Egypt circumvent the government's shutdown of the Internet.

Here are the deets: "The Egyptian government has blocked Internet access and text messaging as well as Twitter and Facebook but people in that country are going through proxy servers or using third-party applications like HootSuite and TweetDeck.

HootSuite users who had already signed up before the Internet was shut down in Egypt are able to use the service although new users who must register a new account online at twitter.com can't get through. However, iPhone users can sign up for new HootSuite accounts through the mobile app."



Otherways to help keep the information flowing, when passing news around Twitter, please add these hash tags:  #egypt #jan25 #demo2011 #dayx 

Also, sign up to follow Al Jazeera English on Twitter and retweet its tweets.


4: The Huffington Post has a great tech article about How to Keep Egypt Online.

The deets: "With the country's citizens unable to log on to the Internet as they normally would, people have turned to a variety of other means to get online, including using ham radios, fax machines, and landline phones.

We've compiled a list of the ways people in Egypt can attempt to access the Internet if their service has been interrupted. Have other suggestions? Email us tips at [email protected]."


5: Access Now has started a campaign to get Egypt Back Online.

The deets: "The Egyptian government shut down of the Internet and mobile phone networks is an attempt to plunge the country into an information blackout. With nobody watching, the Egyptian security forces will get away with murder, literally. Please support this petition calling on the ISPs (including Vodafone) to open the internet and to the mobile operators (including Orange/France Telecom) to break the blackout and maintain the mobile networks. Sign below!"

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