Twitter.com's website downtime increased 400% during World Cup

SAN FRANCISCO, July 20, 2010- The global website monitoring company Uptrends (www.uptrends.com) reports that while Twitter.com, the popular micro-blogging site, may have enjoyed some of its heaviest usage throughout the course of the 2010 World Cup, it also had confirmed website downtime which was 400% higher than the previous month. 

The 2010 World Cup began on June 11, 2010 and concluded on July 11, 2010. Throughout this 31 day period, Uptrends visited www.twitter.com every five minutes from a rotating list of 31 of its 32 global monitoring checkpoints-China was excluded due to that country’s prohibition of Twitter.com.

In the event of an error loading the home page for Twitter.com, Uptrends double-verified the outage from a separate global location.  If the outage can be verified by a secondary checkpoint, this is referred to as a ‘confirmed error’.  In cases where the issue corrected itself before a second checkpoint could verify the error, Uptrends recorded this as an ‘unconfirmed error’.  Below is a comparison of data recorded throughout the 2010 World Cup as compared to the previous month.

  Confirmed Errors Unconfirmed Errors
Month of World Cup 174 552
Month Prior to World Cup 44 188


The increase in downtime is a combination of long-standing issues at Twitter combined with the extreme usage Twitter experienced throughout the World Cup. “The World Cup final represented the largest period of sustained activity for an event in Twitter’s history”, states the official Twitter blog.  

A month ago, on June 15th, Twitter’s blog also stated “Last Friday (June 11th), we detailed on our Engineering blog that this is going to be a rocky few weeks. We're working through tweaks to our system in order to provide greater stability at a time when we're facing record traffic. We have long-term solutions that we are working towards, but in the meantime, we are making real-time adjustments so that we can grow our capacity and avoid outages during the World Cup.”

“As we go through this process, we have uncovered unexpected deeper issues and have even caused inadvertent downtime as a result of our attempts to make changes. Ultimately, the changes that we are making now will make Twitter much more reliable in the future. However, we certainly are not happy about the disruptions that we have faced and even caused this week and understand how they negatively impact our users “ the Twitter.com blog continued. 

Methodology: Using worldwide checkpoints in USA, Canada, UK, the Netherlands, Germany and Australia, Uptrends monitored the availability of the home page of Twitter.com every 5 minutes for two months.  In cases where the website could not be reached, a second checkpoint performed the availability check. If the website was still not available, it was defined as a confirmed error. During the research period, Uptrends was not made aware of maintenance periods of the website being monitored. Uptrends monitored only the uptime of the front page of each website.  Statistics quoted in this release are conservative estimates because the increments of time where the Uptrends Shanghai checkpoint have been removed from the figures quoted in this release.  This removal of data reported from the Shanghai checkpoint does not necessarily indicate that Twitter.com was not experiencing downtime at that moment.

About Uptrends Website, Server and Transaction Monitoring
Uptrends.com has as its mission the increased availability of websites, servers and transactions and the reduction of costly downtime for businesses and entrepreneurs that operate online. The Uptrends monitoring system uses a network of checkpoints in various countries such as the U.S.A., Canada, the U.K., Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, Singapore, China and Australia. More than 1,500 customers in 23 countries rely on Uptrends to keep them informed of their site, server and transaction performance so that potential problems can be identified and downtime reduced as much as possible.

Additional information is available from the following:
Uptrends North America +1 (415) 839-8450
Uptrends UK: 0808-1010-917
www.uptrends.com

For a copy of the full survey results, please contact Uptrends.com