At approximately 2 pm Eastern standard time Gmail temporarily crashed, and as a result, millions panicked due to the short blackout. The email service provided by Google lasted somewhere between forty-five minutes to one hour, a time period that varied between Gmail users. However, despite this short crash, over 450 people were affected due to the server being down.
For one hour today, business owners who heavily rely on Gmail panicked as a result of being unable to communicate due to the temporary crash. This is the first occurrence of the email service crashing since 2009.
In addition, Google plus was affected, which affected youtube users ability to both comment and load existing comments on the website. Furthermore, this temporary crash of Gmail that panicked millions, hangouts throughout the web weren’t accessible, which further impacted businesses ability to communicate with one another.
The temporary crash affected over 450 million users in India, Australia, Britain, the United States, and a variety of countries around the world. While millions panicked due to Gmail’s temporary crash, twitter received numerous tweets of users complaining about the services being shut down.
During the hour that Gmail was down, users of the service were welcomed by an error message informing them that the servers were down. In the time that the Gmail services were down, Google apps such as Google Drive, Google Talk, Google Calendar, and Google Groups were disrupted in addition.
Prior to Gmail becoming fully operational once more, Google made a statement confirming the crash with their statement, “As a result of the incident that occurred with the Gmail services, we’ve been investigating the situation ever since. Further information will be provided shortly.” It was during this time that Gmail seemed to be partially operation, however, the server quickly crashed once more.
At this time it is uncertain as to why the Google outage occurred, however, there is much speculation that the crash had something to do with the Google Reliability Engineering team’s involvement in an AMA on the website Reddit, which occurred at approximately the same time.
During the one hour Gmail blackout, the company’s rivaling service provider Yahoo Inc. took the time to enjoy the situation by posting the temporary error message on the company’s official twitter account.
After an hour of the Gmail services being down, Gmail followed their previous statement with the announcement, “At this time we wish to announce that noted problem with Gmail should be fixed. Google apologizes to its users for this inconvenience; we thank you for your patience.”
During the panic-stricken hour that Gmail had left millions guessing what had caused the crash, the company received a flood of both humorous and harsh criticism from users regarding the situation. Many users, although highly annoyed, did find there to be a sense of poetic irony in the entirety of the situation. As to how the service had crashed, as a result of the Reliability Engineering team, which does quite prove to be that reliable. One user joked, “Has the apocalypse started,” whereas another user stated, “The bittersweet irony here is marvelous. “
The most recent developments in this story are the claims that everyone’s emails are being sent to one address, however, these claims have not yet been confirmed, and most likely are nothing more than rumors.
By Aaron Weis