A website designed to keep protesters informed was blocked by administrators inside the state Capitol, according to a claim by the Democratic Party of Wisconsin.
Party officials said that the website, www.defendwisconsin.org, which was set up by the University of Wisconsin-Madison Teacher Assistants, was accessible after its launch last week until at least Friday. It was then that website organizers realized their site, which was being used to let protesters know the latest news details and to let them know where volunteers were needed, had been shut down for those signing on as a guest to the free Wi-Fi Internet access offered inside the state Capitol.
Sachin Chheda, a Democratic activist and former IT employee at the Capitol, said there are a number of sites that are blocked from users, but he said in order to block this site specifically, somebody would have had to make a conscious effort to do so.
However, Department of Administration officials said computer software blocked the site, just like it does for any new website. It took several days for the software to update itself and when it did it blocked the site, a DOA spokeswoman said. She said there was no malicious effort to block the website.
Democratic Party of Wisconsin chairman Mike Tate had no trouble connecting the dots to Gov. Scott Walker and his administration.
"I think what the Walker administration is not what democracy should look like," Tate said.
Party officials are calling for an apology from Walker and the removal of www.defendwisconsin.org from the blocked website list.
DOA officials didn't return Channel 3000's phone call inquiries about why the website is no longer accessible inside the Capitol.
The website is expected to be back up for all areas of Wi-Fi monitored by the agency, DOA officials said.
The governor's office also replied to the accusation in a statement: "The Democratic Party should spend less time lying about Gov. Walker, and more time trying to get their AWOL State Senators back to Wisconsin."