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Facebook and Instagram were down!

Whilst driving to work, I switched on the radio and landed smack bang into a conversation about what would happen to the world if we did not have satellite signal for a day. The caller, who backed his statements up with reference to a study conducted by Washington University, very slowly and descriptively described the snowball effect that would occur. It sounded like a scene out of an apocalypse movie.

When I arrived at work, there was a certain buzz around the office, “Facebook is down! And so is Instagram!” I tried to log onto to my respective profiles and I received an error message; there was no refresh button giving you hope to try again. No! there was just an X. Don’t even try, it’s not going to work.

Could this be the start of the social apocalypse?!!

fb down 27 jan

Being a Social Intelligence provider, we use social media everyday, we schedule posts on Tracx for Facebook, and many of our clients use Facebook too! So naturally, we were a little bit freaked at the series of unfolding events. We tried vehemently to log onto Facebook’s website to try and find answers, but all that showed up was this message.

“Sorry, something went wrong. We’re working on it and we’ll get it fixed as soon as we can,”

The outage left millions locked out of the aforementioned social networks, creating panic and confusion. It didn’t take long for the outage to trend on Twitter with many people turning to Twitter to find out what was going on, as well as poke fun of our reliance on Facebook and Instagram.

According to Sky News Hackers claimed to have been responsible for the outage. Lizard Squad is a hacking group,  which recently claimed responsibility for a Christmas Day attack on PlayStation and Xbox Live services – said on Twitter this morning that it was responsible for the problems.

We put the following keywords into Tracx to see what online conversations were being generated: [facebookdown] OR [Facebook and Instagram] OR OR [instagramdown] OR



Looking at the overview:

  • There were over 15 000 posts relating to the keywords with 4 236 posts becoming conversations
  • There were over 38 000 interactions and the keywords were mentioned over 16 000 times
  • Over 42 000 unique people were reached with conversations having a density of 8.5 people per conversation.

top postThe top most engaged post was from BuzzFeed at 09:12 posted on Facebook when the social network was up and running again, the Facebook post having 10 415 interactions, 1 150 comments, 2 063 shares, 7 202 likes by 1 329 people.



86% of all interactions and posts occurred on Twitter, with males being the dominant demographic interacting. It is interesting to note that the most popular age groups interacting were between the ages of 35-44 and 45-54, who said that Social Media is just for the youth!


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