Twitter.com, the popular microblogging service had a brief outage yesterday that lasted for a total of 30 mins, and was clarified in a Twitter Status Update at Tumblr.com as a "unplanned maintenance on a database machine", now if I were to tell you new Twitterers that this is just a typical Twitter problem would you believe me? I mean the majority of new users stemming from recent press and television exposure probably wouldn't know what to make of this outage, I want to make it clear to all of you that Twitter.com is a failing service only held up but dedicated Twitter users who trust the Twitter team to really sort things out.
The Twitter team recently valued themselves at $250 million, one thing is for sure they having to start showing all of us exactly why that is the case. They raised $35 million in fresh capital from Institutional Venture Partners (IVP) and Benchmark Capital and aren't exactly showing much in return. The thing that is most interesting to look at from the perspective of the investors is the portfolio's they already hold, IVP has companies such as Netflix and Seagate, and Benchmark Capital have companies such as Yelp.com and Metacafe.com, why did they think Twitter.com would help to maintain that pedigree they already hold with their current investments!
The question really lies on whether Twitter can even scale the site according to the influx in visitors, during 2007 in the inaugural launch year of Twitter, the company had over 5 days of downtime in the entire year according to Pingdom.com, now when a community is relying on this site for "real time conversations" 5 days is a long time! And in 2008, within the first 4 months of the year Twitter had already had 37 hrs and 16 mins of downtime, the highest of any social network!
Is there any chance that during 2009 Twitter put more effort into its flawed system which has been identified in the past as being poorly coded, has the internet given Twitter too long to make amends and should we really accept the downtime and "unplanned maintenance" to be acceptable, as much as the likes of Robert Scoble of Fast Company TV and Steve Gilmor of Techcrunch IT are trying to hold Twitter more accountable, but I just don't know if Twitter are listening!
To be honest with you, I just don't know I really care about Twitter.com that much anymore, this new age of community building viamicroblogging is proving extremely helpful and effective for many brands and web celebrities, but it appears if they cannot formulate a system that works and seemingly uninterested by numerous press writeups about them, then we shouldn't give them the attention!