Worldwide reaction to Facebook’s blackout

Facebook server crash featured image
No, this is not the premise of the next Netflix horror movie, but instead a reality Facebook network’s users experienced last week.

On Monday 4th of October 2021, Facebook’s servers experienced an outage, causing their network of apps (Instagram, WhatsApp, Oculus and Facebook itself) to show blank for users worldwide. According to Facebook’s official statement, the cause of the outage was a configuration change to the key routers that transit traffic between data centres. 

However, we’re not here to take you through the technological ins and outs of what happened, instead, we want to share some of the reactions to the Facebook outage from people like you and I worldwide.

To collect this data, Ventura’s Insights team have created boolean strings of keywords and phrases connected to the event, focussing the timeline on the few hours Facebook and its associated apps crashed. Our analysis features public reactions from Twitter, Snapchat and Tumblr.

Some users greatly missed Facebook’s network of apps:
Other users pondered upon why Facebook’s network had gone down, with some drawing their own conclusions…
Whereas others celebrated the outage:
But how did everyone fill those few hours Facebook was down?
But how did the outage affect rival networks?

Whilst Facebook’s network was down, people didn’t just throw down their devices. Social media users worldwide flooded to other platforms to get their fix of social entertainment.

Twitter was the assumed winner amongst rival apps, with time spent on the app increasing by 11%. The company’s main account tweeted “Hello literally everyone”, earning 2.4 million likes in just four hours (and a reply from Adele).

It was reported that WhatsApp-rival, Telegram, increased usage by 18% in the time Facebook was down, with the founder of the app revealing that it added 70 million users in one day, setting new records for registrations and activity in the app. Telegram also stole the iPhone App Store’s most downloaded free app top spot. Not a bad day at the office!

However, according to Bloomberg, it was actually Snapchat that took the rival’s crown, with usage surging by more than 20% from the week on its Android app alone. 

Let us know what your reaction was to Facebook’s blackout and which platform you spent time scrolling in The Social Network’s absence

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