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Mojo Asks Students

How was your day without Wikipedia?

Ah, Wikipedia. “It’s not a source!”

Professors work hard to drum this mantra into students’ heads. But it sure is an excellent waste of time.

Unfortunately (at least for those of us who use Wikipedia to procrastinate), the site’s been unavailable for the past 24 hours.

The online encyclopedia, along with other popular websites such as Reddit, blacked out all access in an Internet-wide protest of two anti-piracy bills currently up for debate in Congress. The blackout began Tuesday at 9 p.m. and ended Thursday at 9 p.m.

The bills, Stop Online Piracy Act and Protect Intellectual Property Act, target websites with pirated content, allowing government officials to penalize such websites and their affiliates.

(Check out today’s Daily Bruin story for more details, including professors’ and experts’ take on the online protest).

Mojo wanted to find out how students dealt with the black out.

  • Second-year undeclared student Samantha Peszek: “So many people were tweeting stuff like ‘How am I going to get my homework done today?’”
  • Frequent Wikipedia user and second-year material science graduate student Chiping Liu, who was a little desperate, figured out a way to get around the blackout through a Google search.
  • Fourth-year computer science student Rhys Yu heard about the online protest from a friend the night before – but still found himself on Wikipedia trying to look something up every few hours. “I’d forget about it and then when I saw the blackout page, I’d be reminded that issue was ongoing,” he said.

How was your day without Wikipedia and other blacked out sites? Comment below or tweet us your stories @dbmojo.

With reports by Kassy Cho, Bruin contributor.

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