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A complete and widespread data service outage in the Blue Ridge Mountains area of Virginia where Capitol Hill Blue publisher and founder Doug Thompson lives left him unable to transmit a Wednesday column for this web site.
“We’re down and out,” he said in an old-fashioned phone call to Capitol Hill Blue editors early today.
Citizens Telephone Cooperative, the regional communications company that provides phone, web, television and data services exclusively to the area, experienced a massive failure in its data operations that provides the services to residents throughout Southwestern Virginia.
Thompson’s service went out around 3:45 p.m. Tuesday and remained out early today. Company officials could not provide an estimate as to when service might be restored.
Thompson was scheduled to be in court today in the case against the owner of the cow that caused him to crash his motorcycle last fall and left him with life-threatening injuries from which he is still recovering.
Afterwards, if the Internet service is still down, he will drive to the Roanoke, Virginia, area where web service is provided by Verizon and use a wi-fi service to transmit his column.
“I guess I could print it out and fax it,” he said, “but that would require someone else to retype it.”
Maybe, he added, it is time to return to typewriters and paper.
“I still consider myself an ink-stained newspaperman,” he said.