Internet Ramadan is an annual holiday. It lasts for one lunar month. Every day, once the sun has risen, observers of Internet Ramadan refrain from visiting the Internet for any purpose. If necessary, they may make an early, pre-dawn visit to the Internet. The Web-fast is broken after sunset.
During Internet Ramadan, observers are expected to put more effort into interacting with humans. They are encouraged to use other forms of technology (telephones, encyclopedias) to pursue information normally found on the Internet. They may discover that postcards are a reasonable substitute for email. Perhaps their local library still has a reference desk.
Internet Ramadan is in no way meant to seem equal to, superior to, or in any way related to real Ramadan, the Muslim religious observance during the ninth month of the Islamic calendar in which worshippers refrain from eating during the day, and devote themselves to following the teachings of Islam and avoiding obscene and irreligious sights and sounds. Real Ramadan is the most venerated and blessed month of the Islamic year, one of the world's holiest rituals, and an exacting act of deep personal worship that seeks to bring observers closer to God. We probably should not have used the word "Ramadan" at all, but we like the way it sounds with "Internet," probably because both words have three syllables.
Though Internet Ramadan is not a sacred practice, it is intended to induce a comfortable feeling of peace and calm. It may also instill the values of self-discipline, sacrifice, and patience. Internet Ramadan is said to make observers more generous and charitable, especially toward those who do not have Internet access.
Internet Ramadan begins Friday, March 7, and ends Sunday, April 6.