Google has created a “speak-to-tweet” service to allow people in Egypt to tweet with just a voice connection. Via the official Google blog, you can tweet without an Internet connection by leaving a voicemail on one of these international phone numbers (+16504194196 or +390662207294 or +97316199855); the service will instantly tweet the message using the hashtag #egypt. You can also listen to the messages by dialing the same phone numbers or by going to twitter.com/speak2tweet.
The company says, “We hope that this will go some way to helping people in Egypt stay connected at this very difficult time. Our thoughts are with everyone there.” (One of their own employees, Wael Ghonim, the head of marketing for Middle East and North Africa, who’d come to Cairo for a conference, has been missing since Friday morning.)
This happens as, via Tech Crunch,
We’re hearing that Noor Group’s DSL service, Egypt’s last standing ISP which powers the Egyptian Stock Exchange as well as sites of major brands like Coca-Cola and Exxon Mobile is being shut down, meaning there is a risk of Egypt losing all Internet coverage.
Speak-to-Tweet may, however, be but a temporary or limited fix, as CNN reports that mobile phone networks will be shut down in Egypt during the next few hours ahead of the so-called march of millions, as per the information ministry.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 31, 2011