Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Censorship Government The Internet Politics Your Rights Online

Kazakhstan Disables the Internet , Telecomix Restores 156

Posted by timothy
from the for-make-benefit-glorious-nation dept.
bs0d3 writes "In the face of oil protests on their 20th independence day, Kazakhstan has blocked the internet and disabled cellphone towers in the city of Zhanaozen. As with previous internet blackouts, hactivist group telecomix is putting together free dial-up servers for people blacked out in this region."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Kazakhstan Disables the Internet , Telecomix Restores

Comments Filter:
  • by broginator (1955750) on Saturday December 17, 2011 @10:03PM (#38413246)
    Very nice!
  • by LVSlushdat (854194) on Saturday December 17, 2011 @10:07PM (#38413270)

    Who still has a modem thats capable of dial-up????

    • People not in "developed" countries..?
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by dbIII (701233)
        The former USSR was developed - the countries that came from it most likely more so.
        It's possible the average level of education there is greater than what was available to you, especially in geography and modern history it appears.
        • Shouldn't you be out occupying something? Or is it too cold?

          In Soviet Russia, bullshit talks you!

          • by dbIII (701233)
            Hey, it's not my problem if your education failed you so badly that you don't even know what the phrase "developed country" means.
    • I think my old Dell desktop has a modem in it. And my G3 ibook's around here somewhere. I don't have a phone line, tho.

      • by jhoegl (638955)
        I agree, comparing your first world devices to third world nations is worthy of commentary.
    • Who still has a modem thats capable of dial-up????

      I have a couple in a box somewhere in my parts closet. I'd probably have to dig out a motherboard with ISA slots to use some of them though.

      • You're sure that those are modems, and not Winmodems?

        http://www.amazon.com/New-56K-External-Serial-Modem-30490000DG/dp/B005DAZ4UI [amazon.com] (note that the price is rather high there - that was just the first in a long line of hits from Google)

        Most, but not all, of those internal modems were specially designed to run with Windows, and used your computer's system resources to operate.

        • You're sure that those are modems, and not Winmodems?

          Absolutely sure they are not. They were all used on Linux boxes. I forgot about those. But now I remember accidentally buying one once, mainly because the packaging did not state it was a Winmodem.

          • Cool, then. When the last worms and viruses have eaten the hearts out of the last Windows installations, you can still get on the internets! ;^)

    • Lots of recent laptops still come with them - it's cheaper to include it than it is to remove it by changing the motherboard design.

      Also, the government action is self-defeating. Trying t get back at oil workers on a sit-down strike doesn't get those oil workers back to work - and oil workers are a specialized trade. Firing and blacklisting one group "en masse" just means you now have a smaller pool to hire from. Reagan could do it during the air traffic controllers' strike because there were others available to hire and you can use new technology to fill some of the gap - this isn't the case in an industry where technology has already taken up all the slack it can, and there's a world-wide shortage of oil workers.

      • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Sunday December 18, 2011 @01:23AM (#38414192)

        More or less all a modem is in a laptop these days is the hardware to convert the impedance and voltage to work with the 48v balanced phone system. There is no logic, it is all handled in software. Computers are so powerful it isn't hard to do anymore and there's no real performance issue. As such adding one to a system is dirt cheap.

        Also there are some geeks, like me, that still have a modem laying around. I have an old USR Courier in my closet. Should I need it for any reason, like when I move to a new place and am waiting on cable to get hooked up (though they are much faster now) I have it. I haven't used it in years, particularly what with having a smartphone, but I still keep it because why not?

        • by Elbereth (58257)

          I haven't used it in years, particularly what with having a smartphone, but I still keep it because why not?

          Yeah. It's difficult to throw away something that still works. I used to pride myself in my lack of sentimentality, and then I realized that I'd been carting around vintage computers from house to house, as I moved over the years. I eventually forced myself to junk all of them (including a first generation SPARCstation and a Compaq luggable), except for a single conceit: a DEC Multia. How the fuck

          • by genner (694963)

            I haven't used it in years, particularly what with having a smartphone, but I still keep it because why not?

            Yeah. It's difficult to throw away something that still works. I used to pride myself in my lack of sentimentality, and then I realized that I'd been carting around vintage computers from house to house, as I moved over the years. I eventually forced myself to junk all of them (including a first generation SPARCstation and a Compaq luggable), except for a single conceit: a DEC Multia. How the fuck do you throw a DEC Alpha in the trash? It's like destroying a Model T.

            It's easy to rationalize keeping that old junk, when you see stories like this, but, really, all it does is scare away your date.

            You never throw a DEC Alpha in the trash you can sell [varx.com] the parts for a small fortune if you know the right people.

      • Trying t get back at oil workers on a sit-down strike doesn't get those oil workers back to work - and oil workers are a specialized trade. Firing and blacklisting one group "en masse" just means you now have a smaller pool to hire from.

        They are not firing them, they're firing at them, quite literally. Anywhere from 10 to 70 people killed, depending on who you ask. And it's not like those workers can freely pack and move elsewhere, either.

        • by tomhudson (43916)
          You obviously didn't read the story - they fired all the workers from their jobs earlier this year.
    • Better question is who still has a land line?

      • by hrvatska (790627)
        For people who need a low cost, high quality phone service it's frequently cheaper and/or better quality than either a cell phone or a VOIP. At least that's true for many of the people I work with. Almost everyone I work with works from home. When we have phone conferences people using VOIP have problems much more frequently than people using landlines. I've used both Skype and Vonage, and had enough problems with both that I've stuck with my land line. My land line only costs about $30 per month for unli
    • by Stradenko (160417)

      Up until a few months ago, my father. :(

    • I have five.
    • by PopeRatzo (965947) *

      Who still has a modem thats capable of dial-up????

      I've got an old first generation Powerbook G3 that still boots up. Got a hole on the side with a little picture of a phone.

      First I'll have to clean all the cat hair off. She used to sleep on it because it got so nice and toasty warm.

    • by couchslug (175151)

      A shitload of people who cable and DSL in the US don't reach, and millions more in rest-of-world.

      I keep a stash of Winmodems to replace modems belonging to friends which get damaged by lightning, and save my Jaton Explorer from 1999 (with which I first browsed Slashdot using Corel Linux) for troubleshooting.

    • I have a few. One that I know still works. My family went through a shit ton of worthless Winmodems, but the external modems worked far more reliably. I'm quite positive that the old Zoom modem is still functional. That thing went through hundreds of thunderstorms, that would kill those shitty Winmodems! And, of course, we still have the dialup provider to fall back on, if our DSL should crap out for any reason. Which is possible, in our Backwoods, Nowhere community.

    • by tibman (623933)

      who doesn't have piles of old tech in the closet.. just in case

    • by couchslug (175151)

      Enough that USR still make this classic!

      http://www.usr.com/products/modem/modem-product.asp?sku=USR5686G [usr.com]

  • Cellular telephone and Internet connections in Zhanaozen have been out of service since the Friday violence, making independent verification of the security situation impossible.

    An independent verification of events does not mean contacting a stranger on Facebook who purports to be from the area and asking him how many people the government killed today. But that's what the quoted portion implies.

    • More reliable than the media.
      • To be fair, I'd say that is about as reliable as the media, not necessarily more or less.
        • Well, since the media is utterly UNRELIABLE in the extreme, anything is more reliable than they are these days.
          • by tftp (111690)

            Well, since the media is utterly UNRELIABLE in the extreme, anything is more reliable than they are these days.

            Incorrect, mathematically. Imagine a media source that is ultimately unreliable - it is a generator of random noise. If the set of answers is [0..n-1] then the probability of any answer is exactly 1/n.

            Now imagine a witness who is not that bad. The witness has a bias. The density of probability has a peak (one or more.) You are saying, correctly, that the witness is "not as bad." However you do

      • by tftp (111690)

        More reliable than the media

        You need reliable (unbiased) sources and a trusted communication channel. If you conduct an interview with an unknown person at an unconfirmed location and that person tells you a story, what is the value of that story? Will you rush to print with that?

        Theoretically it could be possible to call many citizens in the area and get an average opinion. But stories of ten senior citizens who sit at home will be different from the story of one 20 y/o man who is rebelling against th

    • Because reputed journalists don't use mobile phones or the Internet?

      • by tftp (111690)

        Because reputed journalists don't use mobile phones or the Internet?

        A journalist is welcome to use phones or the Internet to send the story in, or to do background research. I'm not a journalist, let alone reputed one, but I don't see a mathematically correct way to conduct interviews remotely when you don't know who you are talking to and what is the agenda of the person who tells you the story. He may be even the well known, honorable mayor of the town ... with a gun at his head. Internet's value to ex

        • When I said "reputed journalists", I was talking about Kazakhstanis. External reporters contact (or are contacted by) them using cellphones or the Internet to make the independent verification of the situation.

          • by tftp (111690)

            When I said "reputed journalists", I was talking about Kazakhstanis

            The comms blackout, as reported, applies only to the specific area of the unrest:

            has blocked the internet and disabled cellphone towers in the city of Zhanaozen

            so that rioters can't coordinate their actions as they did in London. The rest of Kazakhstan is not incommunicado. Local journalists are free to go there, investigate, return to other cities and call anyone they want in the world. What is the problem then?

  • Whilst this is amusing I suppose it would not be funny for the people that lost their internet connection... I would just curl up and die without on-demand internet access!
  • This is the wet dream of the MPAA/RIAA. SOPA is the next big step down this road.

    So, take a moment to write, call, or visit your representative to voice your opposition to censorship.

    If you think "Oh, it's just that country", you really need to think again.
  • The story came from the Washington Post so all manner of journalists know of it, and internally, word of mouth is almost as quick and just as effective as tweeting, facebooking, etc. When will governments realize that even their best efforts to control information are akin to holding back an ocean with a leaky sieve?
    • People in Kazakhstan are reading the Washington Post? Has it occurred to you that that Kazakh government is more concerned about what its own citizens know than about what the citizens of other countries know?
  • Hey (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Galestar (1473827) on Saturday December 17, 2011 @10:32PM (#38413414)
    At least in the Land of the Free we don't kill protesters. We just pepper spray them, beat them senseless, and arrest them only to let them go 24 hours later without charges.

    America's dead. Long live America.
    • Re:Hey (Score:4, Informative)

      by a_kibitzer (1173865) on Saturday December 17, 2011 @10:58PM (#38413576)
      The kids at Kent State and Jackson State may disagree with you.
      • by couchslug (175151)

        There wasn't much for non-lethal riot control gear back then, and issued rifles didn't have effective non-lethal accessories.

        • by jd (1658)

          Interesting, as one of the complaints make by the most recent investigation into Bloody Sunday was that issued rifles at that time DID have effective non-lethal accessories. So link please or they did.

        • Are you saying sticks and hosepipes are a new invention?

    • by MrMista_B (891430)

      24 hours later without charges?

      What are you talking about?

      That's being changed to indefinite suspension without trial, for any individual, citizen or not, outside of or within US borders.

      Released 24 hours later. Pah. That's a thing of the past.

    • Seriously I get really tired of this garbage of every time a story comes up about protests in another nation, that some people seem to need to try and make it about the US. How STFU? This is about Kazakhstan, and the people there. Not about the US.

      I don't really care what your reasons are for posts like this, they are annoying and stupid. If it is some kind of moral equivalence crap like "Oh the US does some bad stuff so none of their citizens should ever be able to talk about anywhere else," then it is stu

    • by Yvanhoe (564877)

      At least in the Land of the Free we don't kill protesters.

      Luckily NDAA will soon close this loophole.

  • Who is providing the information that the internet has been shut down there? Google data doesn't seem to indicate this so far (http://www.google.com/transparencyreport/traffic/), so where are we getting this information from? Not saying it isn't happening, I just like at least 1 source to backup stories that involve the internet being cut off to an entire nation...
  • by wisebabo (638845) on Saturday December 17, 2011 @10:38PM (#38413450) Journal

    Other than e-mail, what is the best way to get your message across (probably text only) to the largest number of people?

    Some sort of newsgroup, bulletin board? Or is it twitter? (But then you need to have a following right? I don't know, I don't tweet).

    Heaven forbid that we (in the democratic west) ever face this problem but maybe while traveling we might face a situation where just getting a few characters out of info could mean a world of difference. I'm reminded of the time when that Israeli scientist who blew the cover on their nuclear program was caught. As he was being transported via a van in front of a bunch of photographers, he pressed his palm up to the glass where, clearly legible, was a short message (I think it said where he had been kidnapped). I think there was another short message sent by a journalist right when he was being taken in by the Egyptian police (a long time ago) which helped keep him from "disappearing".

    Hope that never, ever happens to me. Maybe having a tiny USB modem should be part of my travel kit.

    • HAM Radio
    • by bbqsrc (1441981)
      Even if you don't have a large following on Twitter, for things like this situation, there is almost always a hashtag for the protest in use. For Egypt, it was #jan25, so if you wanted to send a message about Egypt to as many people as possible, you send a message with #jan25 somewhere in it, and people would easily find it, and retweet it to their followers.

      Abstractly, in a lot of ways a hashtag on Twitter is like an asynchronous equivalent to an IRC channel, in that you can search for it and get any me
      • by wisebabo (638845)

        Thanks. I guess I should set up an (emergency) twitter account.

        Is there a publicly accessible database of all the twitter hashtags? So I'd know which ones to "broadcast" on? (like #takenbypolice or something like that?)

    • I'd recommend RFC1149 [ietf.org]. It's slow and a lot less reliable than what we're used to, but less susceptible to having cables cut, ISPs shut down or routers powered off.
  • ... we need an amendment to the US constitution that says something to the tune of "deliberately disrupting access to communications between free people not convicted of crime, for any reason, is considered an act of terrorism and will be tried as such".

    Obviously with few exclusions and clearer definitions.

    Imagine if people in public service, with ability to manipulate services, that disagree with members of the public, begin to discriminate selectively or bluntly but deliberately in an attempt to defeat th

    • by tftp (111690)

      That would make sense only if access to communications is a human right and not a service that you buy and sell. Otherwise your rights and seller's rights are defined by the contract.

      Also note that one man's freedom fighter is another man's terrorist. BART is not a political stage - it is a conveyance, so it was proper for them to fulfill their primary mission at expense of a tertiary one.

    • by nedlohs (1335013)

      Wow that sounds like one of the worst constitutional amendments I've heard proposed.

      So if I don't pay my cell phone bill or don't bother putting more money on my prepaid one, and they stop letting me make calls from it - then the phone company just committed an act of terrorism?

      The FAA are terrorists because they say you can't use your cell phone while flying?

      When someone runs their bittorrent client while I'm trying to use skype and lags my connection out they're a terrorist?

      The librarian telling you to be

      • You just misinterpreted the shit out of what I said. Try again without being a creative negative nancy.

  • Kazakhstan greatest country in the world.
    All other countries are run by little girls.
    Kazakhstan number one exporter of potassium.
    Other countries have inferior potassium.

    Kazakhstan home of Tinshein swimming pool.
    It’s length thirty meter and width six meter.
    Filtration system a marvel to behold.
    It remove 80 percent of human solid waste.

    Kazakhstan, Kazakhstan you very nice place.
    From Plains of Tarashek to Norther fence of Jewtown.
    Kazakhstan friend of all except Uzbekistan.
    They very nosey people with bone

  • https://twitter.com/#!/MarietjeD66

  • Don't you guys mean ubeki-beki-beki-beki-stan-stan?
  • Why is that that the first time I hear about massive protests in Kazakhstan is a post on /. about hactivists doing an end run around an internet shutdown?

    Oh, yeah, I remember now... because I live in the good old USA where we have freedom of the press. That is freedom of the 6 (or is it 5 now) media corporations to ignore whatever they want.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/these-time-magazine-covers-explain-why-americans-know-nothing-about-the-world-2011-11 [businessinsider.com]

Genius is ten percent inspiration and fifty percent capital gains.

Working...