[LINK] Fwd: Blackout-Proof the protests - it's happening!

Jan Whitaker jwhit at janwhitaker.com
Sat Feb 26 07:40:14 AEDT 2011

[not to solicit donations, but to show how the work-arounds are proceeding]

>Wow - over 17,000 donors, and we've got 15 
>blackout-breaking satellite internet kits -- 
>some already in Libya and more headed to other 
>countries now! Let's keep going -- donate below! Here's the email:
>Dear friends,
>An extraordinary wave of people power is 
>flooding the Middle East, but autocratic regimes 
>are responding with violence -- and Egypt-style 
>internet blackouts. Let's blackout-proof the 
>protests by providing satellite communications 
>technology and support teams to key organisers:
>Across the Middle East -- in Bahrain, Libya, 
>Yemen, and more countries every day -- 
>autocratic regimes are trying to crush 
>unprecedented peaceful protests with brutality 
>and blackouts. These countries are poised on the 
>brink between liberation and enormous bloodshed 
>-- and the protesters' ability to reach the eyes 
>of the world could determine the outcomes.
>Avaaz is working urgently to "blackout-proof" 
>the protests -- with secure satellite modems and 
>phones, tiny video cameras, and portable radio 
>transmitters, plus expert support teams on the 
>ground -- to enable activists to broadcast live 
>video feeds even during internet and phone 
>blackouts and ensure the oxygen of international 
>attention fuels their courageous movements for change.
>The window for us to deliver this help is 
>closing fast, as regimes are moving quickly to 
>choke off borders and internet connections. 
>Small donations from 25,000 of us would fund 
>critical technology and support teams for those 
>who need it most. Let’s chip in to empower 
>those now carrying the destiny of the Middle 
>East in their peaceful hands -- donate now:
>The amazing live-feeds from Cairo’s Tahrir 
>Square vitally sustained public support and 
>broadcast the Mubarak regime's shameless 
>violence against Egyptian demonstrators. As we 
>watched the scenes of protest from around the 
>world, hundreds of thousands of us signed the 
>Avaaz solidarity petition--which was announced 
>on Al Jazeera to ensure Egyptians knew of the 
>world's support. Today, Egyptian protest leaders 
>say that knowing the world was with them helped 
>spur them on and helped stop moments of violence from becoming bloodbaths.
>As Egypt's internet blackout deepened, Avaaz and 
>partners worked to send satellite internet 
>equipment to organisers there. Now, Bahrain is 
>scrambling to implement its own internet 
>clampdown -- and we have the chance to provide 
>critical support to ensure the blackout can't 
>succeed. The communications equipment and 
>support teams will help leaders to broadcast 
>locally to organize rallies, communicate with 
>other activists around the region, and provide 
>information to the world if there is a blackout 
>-- providing an essential counterweight to 
>regime propaganda, and a form of protection to 
>demonstrators through increased exposure and prominence.
>And if media outlets are kicked out, protesters 
>could keep a livestream of information flowing 
>across the internet. With the needed funds, 
>Avaaz can immediately dispatch equipment and 
>world-class expert teams to the Middle East.
>Every day, the protests grow and the crackdowns 
>escalate in violence. Organisers say the next 
>few days are critical to the survival of these 
>democracy movements and that our support is 
>essential. Let’s all donate now and provide 
>tangible solidarity to this inspiring explosion of people power.
>There are moments in history in which the 
>impossible becomes unavoidable. Like the 
>dissolution of the Soviet Union just before its 
>fall, the changes sweeping the Middle East were 
>unimaginable to most a month ago. But people 
>power has a logic and timeline all its own. 
>While many of us may never step foot in the 
>Middle East, the hopes of its people are 
>interwoven with ours and those of the world. In 
>moments like these, it is inspiring to know that 
>our solidarity, in hope and action, can play a small part in big change.
>With determination,
>Stephanie, David, Alice, Morgan, Ricken, Rewan, 
>Maria Paz and the rest of the Avaaz team
>Bahrain, Libya and Yemen try to crush protests 
>with violence – The Guardian, 18 February 2011:
>Internet use in Bahrain restricted, data shows – 
>New York Times, 18 February 2011:

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
jwhit at janwhitaker.com
blog: http://janwhitaker.com/jansblog/
business: http://www.janwhitaker.com

Our truest response to the irrationality of the 
world is to paint or sing or write, for only in such response do we find truth.
~Madeline L'Engle, writer

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