What would you do without the internet?
Surely you've heard the Egyptian government, this week, cut off the internet so Egyptian civilians could not rally or protest the political regime with the use of services such as Twitter, Facebook, blogs and email. Nor can they access any news websites. It seems that if you have government backing, you can do ANYTHING - even cut off the internet. It's a move "unprecedented in internet history," according to Renesys, an internet firm from New Hampshire. Feel free to take the time to read exactly how Egypt cut off the internet.
We don't realize how dependent we are on it until it's, gasp, taken away. Fortunately for us in America, we're not dealing with what the people in Egypt are. Thousands have taken to the streets to protest the government, poverty, and unemployment, amongst other issues. Death tolls from the looting and use of police force is estimated at around 300 right now.
While we pray for the people in Egypt that order is soon restored and no more deaths occur due to all this unrest, it allows us all to reflect on how lucky we are and ask ourselves "What would we do without the internet?" How would we get information, how would we talk to our nearest and dearest and how, oh how, would we pass the time?
I know, for me, I wouldn't be able to get any work done. I rely heavily on email, instant messaging, visiting websites and working within advertising sections of Google, Bing and Facebook for my job. I know I'd miss the social interaction that comes from Facebook where I can instantly agree with a pal's statement by clicking the "like" button underneath their latest post. I know I'd simply go insane without seeing what was happening in my Twitter stream at least a few times a day. I'd be asking myself what the biggest trending topic of the day was, what eCommerce articles I was missing and what entertainment controversies were just beginning to brew.
Hopefully, with Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak announcing his resignation today, we can see an end to this turmoil - and a restoration of one of our greatest freedoms in this world: the use of the internet.