The earthquake near Taiwan last night which snapped six underwater internet cables, seems to have left a large part of Asia, particularly the Northeast, struggling for an internet fix.
Those with internet censorship circumvention tools (proxies) already installed on their computers seem to be doing a little better, but for Hong Kong and mainland China, access is now mostly limited to local sites, but even those have been affected as well. China's largest internet portal website Sina.com's blog site shows almost no mention of the earthquake or the blackout, and RSS feeds slowed to a trickle around lunch time today. MSN and Yahoo! Messenger have been affected as well, although QQ and GTalk are operating normally. Phone calls to other continents, some bloggers are saying, don't connect.
A post from independent blogger Wang Pei shows that not only are Chinese netizens stuck inside the region, but Chinese websites and users seem to have disappeared off the map as well:
One possible explanation is that the Greater China LAN is currently being tested. China is becoming one big internet bar.
“What is the ‘Greater China LAN'?” Wang asks, with a link to fellow indy blogger He Caitou's post on a partnership between China Netcom and American company Verisign which was announced last week, to install root server mirroring (.cn) in China.
Followed by two later updates:
From Hexun blogger zyx105106107 attempts to decipher the reason MSN can't be logged into on his internet service provider, China Netcom, mentioned in the post above above, which he links to the earthquake.
zyx105106107 also lists details of the six underwater cables affected:
1. 中美海缆于12月26日20：25 距离台湾枋山登陆站，9.7公里左右发生中断；
2. 亚欧三号海缆于12月26日20：25 距离台湾枋山登陆站 9.7公里左右发生中断；