Twitter outages hit thousands of users worldwide

Twitter users around the world reported errors accessing it for several hours, Web Monitors said on Wednesday, in one of the biggest outages since Elon Musk bought the platform.

Twitter has been in chaos since the controversial billionaire completed its $44 billion acquisition in October and quickly sought to cut costs.

Thousands of employees — including engineers — have since been laid off or terminated, raising concerns about Twitter’s ability to quickly fix outages and technical problems.

DownDetector reported a spike in issues with Twitter starting around 7 p.m. Eastern Time (Midnight GMT) where users were unable to see their main feed, check notifications, or use other features such as lists.

“Can anyone see this or is twitter broken,” tweeted one user.

“Works for me,” Musk replied.

At the peak of the outage – which appeared to be resolved by 0400 GMT – DownDetector was seeing more than 10,000 complaints in the United States as the hashtag #TwitterDown was trending on the platform.

The number of reports from other countries recorded by the monitor ranged from a few hundred to several thousand.

According to DownDetector’s breakdown, the outage appeared to primarily affect people using Twitter on the web interface. Around 10 percent of the complaints recorded by the monitor came from mobile app users.

The cause of the failure was not immediately clear.

Web monitor NetBlocks said the outages were international and “not associated with country-level internet disruptions or filtering.”

Twitter is one of the world’s most influential social media platforms, used by world leaders, media, corporations and celebrities.

In addition to worries about technical operations, concerns over user safety on the platform have also grown after the mass layoffs hit content moderation and misinformation teams.

Further controversy arose when Twitter allowed banned users to return to the platform, including former US President Donald Trump, who was kicked out after the storming of the Capitol on January 6, 2021.

Twitter also suspended — and then restored — the accounts of journalists critical of Musk.

The South African-born billionaire said his drastic cost cuts at Twitter saved the company and announced last week that he would step down as CEO once he “finds someone stupid enough to do the job”.

© 2022 AFP

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