In the early 2000's, Ethiopian cell phones had SMS (text messaging) just like every other country on the planet. During the 2005 elections, 0pposition groups used SMS to call rallies and spread the word about their candidates and the ruling party. Suddenly SMS disappeared "due to technical difficulties" which have yet to be solved two years later. When some bloggers posted writing unflattering to the government, the entire Blogspot domain disappeared "due to technical difficulties." When someone discovered that Skype was being used to circumvent the government monopoly on telephone revenue, Skype suddenly became unavailable "due to technical difficulties."
Yesterday someone was asleep at the censor-ship switch: for a few brief hours, Skype worked and Blogspot was unblocked. All the afore-mentioned "technical difficulties" have returned this morning, but for a few brief hours you could just get a peek at what unfettered communication looked like. Did anyone try to SMS?