YouTube Experiences a Global Site Outage

YouTube is known for many things. Website downtime isn't one of them. The site did experience a global outage, however, going down Thursday morning for a couple of hours before services were restored. Because YouTube outages are so rare, it sparked a buzz in the online community. Twitter members were speculating that the site had been hacked. There was no word from YouTube, however, regarding what actually caused the site's downtime.

How YouTube's Actions May Affect Its Future Reputation

It isn't likely that this one occurrence of website downtime is going to affect the public's perception of YouTube's reliability. If it happens again, however, the site may find itself in the same league as Amazon, GoDaddy, and other sites with less-than-ideal downtime records. How YouTube handles the outage in the coming days may also lay the groundwork for how the public perceives the site in terms of reliability in the future. If no information is given to the public regarding what caused the outage, the public may draw their own conclusions. If an outage happens again, the public may not be so forgiving if no information is given regarding the cause of the recent outage. If history has shown us anything, it is that communicating the reasons for website downtime with your audience and what you plan on doing to prevent such outages from occurring in the future is crucial to the reputation of your site.

What YouTube Did Right and What They Did Wrong

YouTube did have a message on their site during the outage, letting visitors know something had gone wrong and that the company was working to resolve the issue. That is a step in the right direction. What YouTube failed to do was communicate with the public regarding the reason for the outage or when the site was expected to be up and running again. When it comes to website downtime, communication with the public is key. At Alertra, we've discussed using social media sites to keep your visitors updated regarding any website downtime your site may experience. The way you manage your downtime in regards to communication with the public will indeed have an impact on how your customers perceive any downtime your site may encounter now and in the future. YouTube would do well to release an official statement regarding the reason for the recent outage in coming days.