The world’s favourite bird was strangled into silence for two-and-half hours early on Tuesday. Microblogging website twitter.com couldn’t be accessed for several hours and outages on the site persisted.
The problems ruffled feathers across the world in the multi-million-strong Twitter community.
The reason for Twitter toppling over is being quoted on tech websites as an upgrade that didn’t go according to plan. A posting on Twitter’s status page said the failed upgrade was meant to be an enhancement of a “new approach to timeline caching”.
Industry watcher website though said the outages coincided with the launch of a new feature, called Twitter Places, that lets users highlight tweets around a given location.
Twitter administrators had put up a warning that updates might be out of sequence or even missing altogether due to the technical fault. Some user tweets were duplicated as well.
The first sign that the hugely popular website was in trouble was the appearance of the ‘fail whale’ — the iconic caricature of a whale that signifies things aren’t flying as they should.
As the website struggled to get its nest back in order, the top trending topics included stupidtwitter and #failwhale.
Twitter had been facing technical problems earlier too, with erratic service.
Rivals Facebook and Google will be watching closely — and hoping that there is a migration of birds of a feather who flock to Twitter.