Friday 5: How Kim Kardashian is not alone in breaking the internet…

Where were you when the internet died on 8th June 2021 at approximately 11am?

I, like many of you, was in my home office. Browsing Twitter on a short coffee break from work (honest), a BBC Breaking News tweet stopped my mid-doom scroll:

“Major newspapers and government websites down.”

My first thought: “Uhoh. Somebody is getting sacked.”

My second thought: “Great. The internet is broken…AGAIN!”

The internet always seems to be on the verge of collapse these days. This time it was a problem related to the “edge cloud” provider Fastly, used by many major websites to improve speed and reliability. Big names such as, The White House, The Guardian, Amazon and Reddit all stopped working.

Luckily Twitter was safe, so some of us could keep abreast of the latest crisis, which was just another incidence in a long run of cases of the internet just calling it a day:

1. Cloudflare Outage

Why should you care?

Because even the best tech in the world can all fall apart if just one little thing goes wrong.

A small configuration error on the physical link between Chicago and Newark led to an outage that lasted 27 minutes! Traffic dropped by 50%, and the likes of Discord, Feedly, Politico, Shopify and League of Legends were impacted.

Begs the question though…who cut the cable?!

2. Facebook Down (AGAIN!)

Why should you care?

Because this seems to happen quite a lot to our good friend Zuck.

On March 19th 2021, Twitter became awash with users moaning about the social media network, and the common sight of #FacebookDown began trending. This one was particularly bad though, with Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp also being unusable. Outages were reported in Canada, France, Brazil, Russia, the UK and the US.

That’s a lot of people who suddenly found themselves having to speak to their family/partners/ housemates face-to-face for a change.

3. Don’t Bank On Technology

Why should you care?

We’ve all been there. You go to pay for your shopping and your card gets rejected…

“I swear there’s enough money in there” you mutter to the unimpressed cashier, as the person behind you swears under their breath.

On 1st May 2021 though, Santander customers had an excuse when the bank suffered technical problems leading to its app, internment banking and payment features crashing.

TOP TIP: This only works as an excuse if your bank actually is having technical issues. It may just be that you are over your overdraft limit again…

4. FIFA Servers Score An Own Goal

Why should you care?

Call me old-fashioned, but I preferred it when the only reason my computer games weren’t working was because of a scratched disc.

These days, in the world of online gaming, you have the dreaded servers to deal with.

And in the case of FIFA, if the server goes down that means that potentially 10 million players can’t take to the digital pitch.

5. Google In Lockdown

Why should you care?

If Google goes down, it can impact a lot of people. Around one billion people in fact.

It’s even more of an issue when more people than ever are working from home, relying on the tech giant to stay connected with colleagues, as well as actually doing their job.

So when Calendar, Gmail, Hangouts and Meet all crashed, productivity was sure to plummet.

Good news for the kids though! Google Classroom also went down.

Bad news for the parents…so did YouTube…