Twitter confirmed on Tuesday the Internet messaging and communications site had been blocked in Egypt, where thousands of people have taken to the streets to protest President Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year rule.
“We believe that the open exchange of info & views benefits societies & helps govts better connect w/ their people,” the company wrote in a message, or tweet, as it confirmed the blocking of its service.
The Twitter website was inaccessible in Egypt on Tuesday in what was believed to be a move to thwart protesters using the social network in a campaign to oust President Hosni Mubarak.
The news came as tens of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets across Egypt, facing down a massive police presence to demand the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak in protests inspired by Tunisia’s popular uprising.
Three people including a policeman have been killed.
Despite twitter深圳夜生活会所, being inaccessible, users within Egypt are currently sending Tweets, short 140-character messages, via SMS text messages and through third-party applications, Reuters reported.
Jillian York, a project coordinator at Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society, which runs the Herdict Web accessibility monitoring service, said in an email that she had “confirmed with users in Egypt that Twitter深圳夜生活会所, is in fact blocked on all ISPs.”
Twitter and Facebook were among Internet social networking services reportedly being used by protesters to share information and coordinate activities, in actions reminiscent of similar recent protests in Iran.
The protests were the largest and most significant since riots over bread subsidies shook the Arab world’s most populous nation in 1977, analysts said.
In Cairo’s central Tahrir Square, thousands of protesters chanted in unison: “The people want the ouster of the regime.”
Despite some 20,000 to 30,000 police being deployed in the center of the capital, demonstrators had broken police barriers to march towards the square, where police fired tear gas in an attempt to disperse them.