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Monday, March 14, 2011

Jun Murai on Internet communication in Japan post-tsunami

Every European politician should read this and reassess their opinion of the essential network utility that is the Internet: "When the first earthquake of M9.0 (the original Magnitude announced was M8.8 but they modified it officially) happened at 5:46 UTC/14:46 JST, I was in Hiyoshi campus of KEIO Univ. in Yokohama city. Soon all the electric power in the city went down in Kanagawa area (therefore, no signal lights in the street). The fixed line phone and mobile became busy. I found that most of the 3G data connectivity have been working even though their 3G voice communication was not available (probably because of the controlled restrictions by the operators). Therefore, the means of communication for those people to confirm their family's safety, which as I mentioned is what they most wanted, were provided by emails, twitter and SNSes through 3G data communication. Other information of the earthquake also been accessed by WEB. I have received many emails afterwards, saying 'thanks to the Internet' in the face of this situation. Some of the Japanese mobile phones are equipped with terrestrial TV broadcast receiver in a device. This function called 'one-segment TV' has been said as 'unnecessary function' to make Japanese mobile market isolated, but this time it worked very nicely to get the TV news broadcasting with the power failure status."

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