Saturday, November 12, 2011

20 bloggers in Ethiopia?

This is not my claim but according to an Ethiopian blog, there are only 20 bloggers in Ethiopia. Ethiopia has always had a huge problem diffusing new technologies into its society; many Ethiopians claim this is due to the country's "closed" nature which ensures the populations are not as adaptable to modern technology and  some have attributed it to more historical or political reasons.

Ethiopia has a state monopoly over the telecommunications industry, no doubt prices for bandwidth, connectivity must be quite high in this country of 85 million people and beyond the reach of almost everyone. .ET domain names alone cost about $300. According to ITU stats, Ethiopia had 360,000 internet users in 2009 a number that is though to have increased to around 440,000 or 0.5% of the population currently.

In this regard therefore, Ethiopia is severely handicapped. 440,000 internet users out of a population of 85 million is quite pathetic and shows the country is  decades behind even some African countries as far as the development of an. Down South, Kenya, with a population of 39 million has 10 million internet users! As of today, there are 371,640 Facebook users in Ethiopia so the idea that an online community of about 440,000 of which 370,000 are Facebook users can only produce 20 bloggers does not make sense. But I think the number, "20 bloggers", is symbolic of the pathetic state of Ethiopia' s ICT industry.

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