These are certainly not first-world problems. The Ethiopian government, which keeps a tight leash on the country’s telecommunications, has banned Skype, Google Talk, and all other VoIP services. The law, which actually passed last month under the radar, says those caught using a VoIP service can be punished with up to 15 years in prison. The new law also prohibits video and audio chat via social media. Government officials have argued that the bans were necessary for national security reasons.

The country’s sole ISP, Ethio Telecom, is state-owned and the government has long been filtering citizen’s internet access in an effort to suppress vocal opposition. The Tor network allowed users to surf the web anonymously, but Ethio Telecom installed a system to block access to it. In 2010, only 700,000 out of Ethiopia’s 84 million citizens had access to the Internet.

via Tech Crunch

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