Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Egypt and the Internet…

Folks, here is a quick reading reco’.

Egypt Flips Internet Kill Switch. Will the U.S.?

“What can an undemocratic government to do to control its people? If tear gas and rubber bullets don’t work, take away their Twitter and Facebook access, of course. And if the people still don’t fall into line, cut off their Internet and mobile phone access entirely.”

February 2, 2011 - Posted by | computers


  1. Re: Egypt Flips Internet Kill Switch:
    This is concerning to say the least! Shutting down all sources of communication is going against International Human Rights and the Freedom of Expression.
    (kudos to Google for setting up a land line for the people in Egypt to communicate to the world)

    With the “huge monumental sometimes corrupt” things that goes on around the world, it’s the Internet, Face Book, Twitter and others that RIGHTFULLY is “bringing to light” much of what was hidden from the world, it’s part of our “new society.”

    All kinds of “wonderful things” are happening with the internet, Every New Mountain Brings Another Plateau, and principles has to be established that will be functional and legal for everyone to have access to the internet.

    While the Flip Of The Switch is a monumental issue, there’s the existing SECURITY issues in all the governments… since Security is necessary… I wonder how and if all can be resolved.



    Comment by Gaia | February 3, 2011 | Reply

    • Gaia,
      As far as I know.. “Freedom of expression” doesn’t exist and never has; though certain Democratic governments have granted citizens Freedom of Speech (and even Freedom of the Press) Laws, which contain restrictions (such as, the prohibition against shouting “fire!” in a crowded theater, and “hate speech”). As for “International Human Rights”, well.. I am no expert, and find the topic complex.

      There is no doubt in my mind however, that the advent of the Internet is a relatively new thing in Man’s history, and it is, as we speak speak, changing many, many things — certainly including the dissemination of news and information — and such things as Laws and Government Policies are struggling to catch up.
      I have no idea how you would make Internet access a Human Right… (I pay for mine).

      I will say that the article raises some interesting questions.


      Comment by techpaul | February 3, 2011 | Reply

  2. Paul,

    Freedom of Expression is guaranteed under both the 1st and the 14th Amendments of your own Constitution, as it is under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

    To wit: Freedom of Expression is a cornerstone of a functioning democracy. Maintenance of a system of free expression is necessary (1) as assuring individual self-fulfillment, (2) as a means of attaining the truth, (3) as a method of securing participation by the members of the society in social, including political, decision-making, and (4) as maintaining the balance between stability and change in society.

    Further, Freedom of Expression is a cornerstone of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted and proclaimed by the General Assembly of the United Nations, on December 10, 1948.

    To my knowledge, I don’t believe there’s a democratic country in the World, that doesn’t legally enshrine – Freedom of Expression.

    As for International Human Rights being “complex” – not really. The concept can be summed up in one easy to remember phrase from your own Declaration of Independence – “All men are created equal”.



    Comment by Bill Mullins | February 3, 2011 | Reply

    • Bill,
      Thank you for that.

      I did acknowledge the freedoms you specified. But I was also pointing out that there are restraints in place in even the most Liberal of societies.. as well as – for my own interpretation anyway – a difference between “expression” and “speech” and “press”. (To my way of thinking, “expression” can include actions and deeds, which are controlled through other Laws. I cannot “express” my joy at being alive by running around the streets naked, for example.)

      But mostly what I was trying to say, was I see the Noble Ideas expressed in those great documents as being in flux and evolution – and when looked at in the light of actual events and realities (such as .. what good is the UN Charter doing political prisoners, and citizens in totalitarian regimes) when the “rubber meets the road” so to speak, plus the need for some order for societies to function.. it often becomes a question of “where do you draw the line”? And what about here..? In my own country I have watched the 1st and 14th (and others) eroded yearly. (The Patriot Act reduced our Constitutional Guaranties in the name of security, for one.. and traffic cams, in the name of safety,.. and “political correctness”, in the name of gender, sex, and racial equality ..)
      It is a complex, and dynamic, topic … to me. It is, IMHO, a great topic, and I could discuss it for hours and hours. Toss in how the Internet is crossing borders, and man is becoming less “national” and more “global” in his relations with his fellow man, and, well, add more hours and hours!


      Comment by techpaul | February 3, 2011 | Reply

  3. “All men are created equal”… Unfortunately in many societies “All men are created equal but some are more equal than others…” to quote George Orwell from his novel Animal Farm.

    I agree that this subject could be debated for hours on end, and I’m sure it can become extremely heated. And, I find it to be very “complex” issue. If it were as simple as some consider it to be, there might peace in the world today.


    Comment by KsTinMan | February 3, 2011 | Reply

    • KsTinMan,
      Ha! Orwell!

      When talking about the Internet.. and the state of the world today.. I quite often think of Orwell.
      Though, usually 1984, not Animal Farm


      Comment by techpaul | February 3, 2011 | Reply

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