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Africa Land Post: Twitter, WhatsApp offline in Ethiopia’s Oromia State April 12, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests, Africa, Oromia.
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Odaa Oromootweet tweet #OromoProtests

 

The Economist on #OromoProtests#OromoProtests Global solidarity rally  in Vancouver, BC, Canada, 11 March 2016.#OromoProtests iconic picture#OromoProtests at Awaro Campus, Ambo, Oromia, 11 and April 2016 p2


 

 

INTERNET messaging applications such as WhatsApp haven’t worked for more than a month in parts of Ethiopia that include Oromia region, which recently suffered fatal protests, according to local users.

Smartphone owners haven’t been able to access services including Facebook Messenger and Twitter on the state-owned monopoly Ethio Telecom’s connection, Seyoum Teshome, a university lecturer, said by phone from Woliso, about 115 kilometers (71.5 miles) southwest of the capital, Addis Ababa.

“All are not working here for more than one month,” said Seyoum, who teaches at Ambo University’s Woliso campus. “The blackout is targeted at mobile data connections.”

A spokesman for Twitter Inc. declined to comment on the issue when e-mailed by Bloomberg on Monday. Facebook Inc., which bought WhatsApp Inc. in 2014, didn’t respond to an e-mailed request for comment.

Protests that began in November in Oromia over perceived economic and political marginalisation of Ethiopia’s most populous ethnic group led to a crackdown in which security forces allegedly shot dead as many as 266 demonstrators, according to a March report by the Kenya-based Ethiopia Human Rights Project.

The government has said that many people died, including security officers, without giving a toll. One social-media activist, U.S.-based Jawar Mohammed, disseminated information and footage from protests to his more than 500,000 followers on Facebook.

No explanation
Restricting access isn’t a policy and may be because of “erratic” connections, according to government spokesman Getachew Reda. “We have not yet found any explanation,” he said by phone from Addis Ababa on Monday.

The government has the technology to “control” the messaging applications, the Addis Ababa-based Capital newspaper reported on April 10, citing Andualem Admassie, Ethio Telecom’s chief executive officer. Andualem didn’t answer two calls to his mobile phone seeking comment.

Hawassa city in Ethiopia’s southern region has suffered similar difficulties in accessing applications for more than a month, said Seyoum Hameso, an economics lecturer at the University of East London. “We couldn’t communicate with relatives,” he said in an e-mailed response to questions on Monday.


Twitter, WhatsApp offline in Ethiopia’s Oromia region

 

The 4.4 billion people around the world without Internet Connections October 4, 2014

Posted by OromianEconomist in African Internet Censorship, Ethiopia the least competitive in the Global Competitiveness Index, Facebook and Africa.
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4.4 billion people around the world still don’t have Internet. Here’s where they live

 

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October 3, 2014 (Washington Post) — The world wide web still isn’t all that worldwide.

An exhaustive newstudy by McKinsey & Company (really, it’s 120 pages long) about the barriers to Internet adoption around the world illuminates a rather surprising reality: 4.4 billion people scattered across the globe, including 3.2 billion living in only 20 countries, still aren’t connected to the Internet.

The sheer number of people unconnected in some countries is staggering. India is home to nearly a quarter of the world’s offline population; China houses more than 730 million; Indonesia 210 million; Bangladesh almost 150 million; and Brazil nearly 100 million. Even in the United States, 50 million people don’t use the Internet (though, as my colleague Caitlin Dewey points out, many of those who are offline in the United States are offline by choice).

But adjusting for size, and instead looking at the percentage of people in certain countries that still aren’t connected to Internet, shows that quite a few places have very little internet penetration at all. In Myanmar, 99.5 percent of the population is offline; in Ethiopia, almost 98 percent; in Tanzania, more than 95 percent; and in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, just under 95 percent.

Most of the world’s offline population, some 64 percent, live in rural settings, where poor infrastructure, health care, education, and employment, impede Internet adoption, the study says. In India, for instance, roughly 45 percent of the population lives without electricity, making Internet access all the more unthinkable.

 

 

 

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