Satellite to improve Internet access in underserved parts of the world

Buy this satellite?

by Jeff Foust, The Space Review, Monday, February 7, 2011

The last several weeks have demonstrated the power—and the fragility—of the Internet as a tool of social protest and revolution. In Tunisia and, more recently, in Egypt, demonstrators turned to the Internet, particularly social networks like Facebook and Twitter, to coordinate protests and disseminate information in ways not imagined more than a few years ago. Those tools are a way to get around the restrictions of state-run media, but are themselves vulnerable to disruption by the state, as the Egyptian government demonstrated when it effectively cut off Internet access in the country in late January in an effort to hinder the protestors’ ability to organize.

The Egyptian government was able to take that step, if only temporarily, because of the limited terrestrial means of accessing the Internet. But what if there was a way to get around those blockades, an alternate means of access that didn’t rely on terrestrial infrastructure and its potential for disruption? The answer could come from the skies. …

For full text of the article via The Space Review: Buy this satellite?.

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