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Cameroon Government shutdown social networks. Facebook, Whatsapp, Twitter cutoff
68 points by ndifor on Sept 30, 2017 | hide | past | web | favorite | 6 comments
I woke up this morning and discovered Internet Services in Cameroon have somehow been limited. I am suspected the regime of Paul Biya have tampered with the internet service and Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, VPNs, Vcontact aren't working. I am sure many other social media have been cut off as well. I am sure you guys are aware of the ongoing crisis that have rocked the "English speaking regions" ( Former Southern Cameroons) of Cameroons since November 2016. There have been plans to celebrate the symbolic independence of this region " The Former British Southern Cameroons" on the 1st of October 2017. That is on Sunday and the region have been heavily militarized by the Biya regime, Homes of people invaded, beaten , some killed, many kidnapped and with this shutdown to major social media to which it is where most of these crimes are exposed, many have been fearing a total Genocide that can be perpetrated on the people of that region. There were rumors that, the internet will be shutdown come 30th September. The Minister of Communications made a public communique two days ago to say, the internet won't be shutdown but I guess it was just a ploy as through some websites are working, major social medias ( Facebook, Whatsapp, Twitter) have been cut off. Please, make the world know what is happening in this region. This is a sly move to blackout to the world what atrocities the Biya's regime is/will be perpetrating in these regions. Thank you.

It's a common practice for gov to shutdown internet totally or partially, especially social networks, in events relate to politics.

Things like this are why I'm very excited about things like SpaceX's global satellite internet plans. Having parallel international- and intranational-provided communications infrastructures prevents either type from becoming a malicious gatekeeper.

You might end up pretty disappointed! Most countries require a local license to do business there, and that might involve sending all traffic through a government gateway. Without a local license, it might be pretty annoying to get an antenna and pay for the service.

Hypothetically, let's say a company sold satellite internet gear to people in a country during a time when the internet was not being cracked down on for political reasons. When the "shit goes down", how would the government shut down this service? The satellites could drop all packets during the few minutes they were over the country in question, but what leverage does the oppressive government have over the satellite internet company?

These are not problems that can be solved with tech effectively. These kind of problems are solved at a social level (e.g. civil war).

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