Facebook crashes: Users flee to Twitter
Mon., Oct. 5, 2015
by Mark Ollig

Last Monday, the most popular Internet social media site crashed.

According to Statista, Facebook has an estimated 1.5 billion monthly active users; so this incident immediately created page-one news.

Facebook’s Internet address would not load; thus causing it to be inaccessible for millions; and potentially over one billion computers and smart devices world-wide.

This event prompted many of its users to become upset and extremely restless.

They first began noticing problems loading the Facebook webpage around 2 p.m. (CDT).

A press release from Facebook stated they were having “configuration issues.”

Millions of folks, suffering from acute Facebook social media withdrawal, virtually traveled to the next-best social media site available to them for relief: Twitter.

There, thousands of messages (tweets) were being posted to the trending Twitter hashtag: #facebookdown.

For many, it seemed like the day of social media Armageddon had arrived, as folks frantically sent their personal messages of grief, frustration, and prophetic retributions out onto the gigantic Twittersphere.

Some folks were even typing Twitter messages proposing some sort of secret conspiracy had taken place.

These messages suggested Facebook was taken offline because of NASA’s earlier in the day announcement of water being discovered on the planet Mars.

Of course, this was not the case; but it did make for some exciting online drama.

After careful consideration, this experienced telecommunications technician from yesteryear felt “configuration issues” was the more likely cause.

The “tallying registers” at Twitter headquarters must have been pegging off the charts with the sudden deluge of users logging onto their service, seeking online sanctuary and respite.

It would be about two hours, before the service-affecting isues were fully resolved, and folks could once again log in to Facebook.

During the outage, I read a variety of Twitter messages.

Many expressed frustration; others were somewhat humorous about the situation.

Photos of the Facebook “thumbs down” were being posted, along with screen shots of Facebook’s failed login message saying; “Sorry, something went wrong. We’re working on getting this fixed as soon as possible.”

“Hello . . .Mark Zuckerberg. [I] want your complaints book!” was one apparently frustrating tweet posted by @Lima_Cero.

Another message by @LiamJones19 read; “So frustrating when I’ve got unread messages and notifications I can’t look at.”

Naturally, I got into the spirit of things, and ended up posting a couple Twitter messages of my own.

In one tweet, my Twitter username: @bitsandbytes, posted about bringing back to life my old dial-up computer BBS (bulletin board system).

“I’m re-installing my vintage 9600 bps Hayes Optima smart modems, getting some analog phone lines, and firing up the old WBBS OnLine!,” yours truly tweeted.

Others must have liked this Twitter message, as it received favored status.

Some of you might remember, back in the early 1990s, I used to be the system operator of a dial-up hobbyist computer bulletin board service accessible over telephone lines – not the Internet.

I lived in Winsted when I operated the BBS, so I called it WBBS (Winsted Bulletin Board System).

For anyone with nostalgic memories of using a computer BBS, check out my 2007 column: http://tinyurl.com/wbbsonline.

I also posted “The Scream” painting by Edvard Munch, with the Twitter hashtag at the top saying; “#FACEBOOK DOWN!!!”

Twitter user @ClaireDampier tweeted; “I’m only here [on Twitter] because Facebook is broken.”

“Martians have taken over #Facebook, and now they are negotiating with NASA the water they supplied is too wet,” posted Twitter user @djsounder.

I also saw messages typed in other languages on Twitter, such as this tweet written in Portuguese from @NairaJakeline; “The Facebook could stop forever.”

One tweet in German by @JuliaBecker98 assured us with; “At least Twitter is there for you.”

A Spanish written tweet by @Miel_de_abeja, commented; “Time flies when Facebook falls.”

This tweet may have been posted by a teacher; “Facebook is down, boys and girls. It’s time to actually read a book. I want a page summary on what you’ve read,” instructed @Dayniaa.

One logically thought-out tweet from @AmyStretton said; “First thing we do when Facebook stops working? Check Twitter to make sure it’s not just us.”

Instagram, the popular photo sharing site, is a part of Twitter, and was affected by the outage, as its clients were unable to enter their Facebook login, which is used by Instagram to post their photographs.

I especially liked this tweet from @fauxnelson; “Can you imagine Walter Cronkite reporting on Facebook being down?”

Having watched Mr. Cronkite deliver the news, I think he might have said something along the lines of; “Good evening from the CBS News Control Center in New York. This is Walter Cronkite, reporting. We are receiving printed teletype bulletins into our news room confirming the popular online social media site Facebook, is currently unreachable by its Internet patrons. We will bring you the latest updates as we receive them. And that’s the way it is, Monday, September 28, 2015.”

Once Facebook began working, Twitter messages expressing relief, appreciation, and thanks began being posted.

The last tweet I will leave you with was this tongue-in-cheek message by user @demileegoldiee; “People still use Facebook?”

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