Facebook Down -- And So?
When I woke up yesterday and crawled from my bed to switch on the laptop, with eyes half closed I typed a few URLs that I usually start my day with. It really annoyed me that Facebook page didn’t respond. At first, I blamed the machine, obviously. My second reaction though, was to use another social media channel to see what was going on -- Twitter.
It Is Not Just You
I didn’t even have to use the #Facebook hashtag to realize, as it happens with social media, that I was not the only one experiencing connection problems (“Is it just me or is #Facebook down?”). After joining the #Facebook discussion I understood the the problem was legitimate (“Facebook is down!”), soon the “official” message followed: “Updating this as we go along: #Facebook has hiccup in Europe, Middle East and Africa”
One of the most interesting topics in the soon evolved #FacebookDown conversation was the one concerning the Anonymous group -- "Did #Anonymous hack Facebook? #anonops #facebookdown” (just to be clear -- they didn’t). There also were many jokes, as usual only a few of them funny, all of them mostly referring to the blessing of productivity linked to the social network being temporarily down: It must be the day of productivity. And utter loneliness. #facebookdown” or “Have they tried turning Facebook off and on again? #facebookdown”.
Social Media On Social Media
Yes, it wasn’t just me. The first reaction of many people was to automatically switch to another social media when one of the main ones was down. Many people figured out that something was wrong only because their linked to Twitter Facebook account wouldn’t publish their Twitter updates. So many tools, device and apps are interlinked and combined, that getting a blank page instead of the Facebook home one, could have been a rare case, really. Within seconds people realised the the problem was not only theirs and created a hashtag to be able to exchange updates, as well as to have a friendly -- and funny -- conversation. The spot-on comment from one of the tweeps made the discussion even more intertextual: “'Today’s experiment: If even today Google+ can't get someone to log in -- they said -- they might as well just quit. #facebookdown.” The conversation around a common problem was not just about solving a problem, and keeping the spirits up, it also plugged in many other ongoing discussions focused on the Internet and social media in general. Google Plus references, as well as the accusation Anonymous could serve as examples here.
This is not to say that social media is easy. I am far from that. Nevertheless, it is very interesting to see a certain pattern evolving from this short offline-online story. What do you think?