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News and comments on community broadband networks, the communities deploying them and the technologies that support them. Published by Denise Frey and Al Bonnyman.

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Index of 2100 previous posts since March 2003

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Wednesday, May 21, 2003


"SARS sends stay-at-home Chinese online"

"SARS sends stay-at-home Chinese online"

"When near panic gripped many in Beijing and other cities as the daily number of reported Sars cases soared late last month, offices closed and their employees were forced to work - and play - from home."

"Online usage soared. At some times, an estimated 1m people in Beijing were trying to use dial-up services, swamping the 150,000 lines available, says Basil Huang, president of 263 Network Group, one of China's biggest internet service providers. "In some areas, there were so many people dialling up you could not even make a telephone call. In normal times, it's great if we can exceed a 50 per cent use rate of our capacity...but during the Sars outbreak it has generally been over 80 per cent and 98 per cent during peak times."

If a SARS outbreak or some other natural (or man-made) epidemic hits your community, how well prepared will your residents be to work at home on-line? Broadband access is beginning to have Homeland Security implications for the U.S.

This article in the Financial Times is a must-read for Americans.


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