Snapchat went down for four hours this Wednesday, due to an unexplained outage. Thousands of users left messages on Downdetector as they were unable to use the app during the outage. According to a Snapchat representative, the issue has been resolved and users should not face any difficulties using the app now.
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What happened to Snapchat?
Around lunchtime in the US, popular image and story-sharing application, Snapchat went down due to an outage. No information has been provided as to what was the cause of the outage. However, the service was unavailable for a period of 4 hours. During this time, Downdetector, a website that tracks outages for popular platforms saw the number of reports related to Snapchat increase form 3,649 to 12,645 within a span of ten minutes. Some users tried to log out of the service to fix the issue but where then unable to log back into their accounts. A representative from the company left a message on the website saying the service would, "shortly be up and running".
After four hours of downtime, the issue was resolved. The company informed users that the issue had been resolved and asked them to, "Please log out and log back in in the meantime to refresh your connection." The Snapchat outage comes on the heels of a significant outage at Facebook that left users unable to access many of the companies services include Instagram, Facebook, and WhatsApp.
What we know about the Facebook outage
The Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp outage lasted for approximately 7 hours. According the Downdector the issue impacted users around the globe. Users trying to access Facebook during this time would see the message. "site can't be reached". Instagram was giving users a "5xx server error'. Facebook has not confirmed or commented on the reason behind the issue but it is believed to be a DNS issue. Via Twitter, Facebook's communications executive, Andy Stone made the following statement, "We’re aware that some people are having trouble accessing our apps and products. We’re working to get things back to normal as quickly as possible, and we apologize for any inconvenience."
The outage also served to highlight how much users and businesses rely on services from a single company. Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, highlighted the issue by Tweeting, "It’s almost as if Facebook’s monopolistic mission to either own, copy, or destroy any competing platform has incredibly destructive effects on free society and democracy." She further criticized the company's monopolistic behavior saying, "Remember: WhatsApp wasn’t created by Facebook. It was an independent success. FB got scared & bought it. … If Facebook’s monopolistic behavior was checked back when it should’ve been (perhaps around the time it started acquiring competitors like Instagram), the continents of people who depend on WhatsApp & IG for either communication or commerce would be fine right now. Break them up.”
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Featured image: Snapchat