Because of the earthquake in southern sea of Taiwan on 26 of December, 2006, two major internet cables in the Pacific Ocean have been broken (details see Andrew Lih). Hong Kong is a major affected areas and many bloggers and internet users are forced to live through a few days without internet at year end.
However, the issue at stake is much more than not able to go online, there are more reflections from bloggers concerning our modern life and internet business and governance.
Mo's notebook points out the reason why Hong Kong had suffered more than many other areas (including mainland China) is related with the monopoly of telecommunication business:
As for local ISP, their lines all go through northeast Asia, foreign ISP are more evenly distributed. In the end, only I-Cable, the slowest line is working now, all other lines are dead, and all the customers are fooled.
Don't put all the eggs into a basket, this is the truth of fair competition.
Yin also releases how passive the internet users are in this digital world:
However, we–the person of the year–are so passive. We are depending on the internet lines under the sea, the computer, the electricity… all these are not under our control.
While Duke aka expresses how internet has dominated one's life Charles Mok finds the disruption as a great opportunity for ordinary netizens to take a leave from the computer.
While in Mainland China Keso has some revelations from the incident that the world is not as flat as it seems to be.
A flattened world sounds good, when we imagined that the flat land could be cultivated by machine, when we imagined that roads and rails we didn't need to build so many bridges and tunnels, when we imagined the grand economic utility, such world was really beautiful. However, when we chant “connecting with the world” regarding issue like inflation, we sometimes also want an uneven and bumpy world to cover up ourselves, such bumpiness, in official term is “Chinese character”.
At first, people thought that the flattest land is the internet. The whole world is connected through fingers via the net. Slowly we find out that, those who are more into internet, they wish the internet land not to be as flat. Being uneven becomes a distinctive competitiveness. Those transnational corporates which seriously believe that the world is flat have lost one round after another round. They think by moving the server to China can flatten the world. Such thought is more naive than the belief that “the world is flat”. They don't even know why they have lost.
The broken sea line only cut off the physical connection with other part of the world. Such cut off is temporary and the damage can be measured. However, the belief that, with 123 millions netizens, China internet would become an isolated island and cut off permanently from the world, is far more danger.