Can Twitter Recover From The Fail Whale Disaster?

Can Twitter Recover From The Fail Whale Disaster?

By | June 16, 2010 at 8:47 pm | No comments | General | Tags: , , ,

Over the past couple of weeks you may have noticed Twitter starting to come undone at the seams with a higher level of poor site performance and overall downtime. Whilst regular users of twitter have experienced the Fail Whale, there was a large portion of users who experienced total outage from Twitter last week (Saturday 12th June 2010).

The question is, can Twitter recover from their very own need for reputation management

What Was To Blame?

Just as the surge for information brought many business networks down as a result of office workers craving news about 9/11 as it happened, the ability for people to comment live on the World Cup may have brought with it an increase in usage. Twitter says this was not to blame in its own right, but the “complexities that have been inherent in fixing and optimizing our systems before and during the event.”

The Twitter Revolt

Twitter is many things: a status, a promotional tool, a chat tool etc. One thing that Twitter has been responsible for in the past is public relations disasters. Unfortunately for Twitter, they themselves started trending for terms such as #failwhale and #twitterfail. Not only were Twitters own users turning on the service through their own platform, but they were also becoming disillusioned with the service – particularly with further downtime throughout much of the following week.

The downtime allowed people to become creative in their slander. Several examples include:

The Fail Whale - Block Style

The Block Fail Whale

CSS Fail Whale

Pure CSS Fail Whale

(I highly recommend you view the Pure CSS Fail Whale by Steve Dennis (requires a webkit browser such as Safari or Chrome))

Another BP Fail Whale

A BP Fail Whale

The BP Fail Whale

Another BP Fail Whale

Several other BP Fail Whales popped up, including a site of its own at

What Are The Alternatives

Users continue to be disgruntled at the intermittent outages which have resulted in direct messages being sent several times, updates not sending through third party programs including Echofon, Tweetdeck, Twidroid, loss of tweets, loss of tweet numbers etc.  This has left many users wondering if there are any alternatives to the popular services.

Perhaps Facebook will see a surge in usage whilst people are trying to connect with their friends?

About the Author

Kev Strong

Kev Strong is an online marketing consultant at Newcastle Upon Tyne based digital marketing agency, Mediaworks. A lover of all things search and an ex-web developer, Kev Strong (a.k.a Goosh) is a specialist in advanced search engine optimisation.