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Great GMail Outtage of 2008

Aug 18, 2008

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It was all the buzz. GMail experienced a hiccup and was down for a couple hours last week. I missed the whole thing. However; when I started checking my newsreader and twitter, email, etc. everywhere I turned people had been crying, “GMail is down! We’re DOOMED!” I was quite surprised at the public outrage. I use GMail for my personal email. I’ve been using it for years without issue. I think in all those years I’ve experienced (personally) about 10 minutes of downtime. I had no idea it was down last week during the actual outage as I was working and didn’t try to check my email during those few hours. Even if I did, I would have felt -at most- slightly annoyed and would have came back to it later. What’s surprising is how many stated they felt disconnected, unproductive, and were moving to another free email service, such as Yahoo. In this day and age of technology, there are countless ways to communicate, and while email is very convenient especially with those abroad, it certainly isn’t the only form of communication. Systems go down. Services fail. It’s just a fact of life in this world of computers, routers, networks, and email. One should always have a backup plan. To Google’s credit, they explained, “We feel your pain, and we’re sorry” Which is all they can really do.
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8 Replies to “Great GMail Outtage of 2008”

  1. thanks for the apology but it didnt affect me.i just cant believe the whiners out there that rely on technology so much for thier daily lives. good thing the global positioning satellites didnt go down as well they might not find there way to the local starbucks for thier grande latte enemas. when i learned to sail we had this instrument called a sextant and i still use it for navigation. now theres the gps system which is very cool but like our email can go down as well. just pointing out there are inherent problems with relying solely on technology.

  2. Well, a lot of us use gmail as our office email. That’s a much bigger interruption than not hearing from Aunt Sally.

    But I agree, Gmail has caused me a whole lot less issues as a business email product than any office server based mail I’ve ever had.

    yeah for Google.

  3. Dave, I’m guilty of relying on technology, probably a bit too much. See my “geek girl post“. If my technology fails, I survive just fine without it, though. 😀

    Margo, yes, as far as I know Google is still in beta. They are still sporting the beta logo.

    Chris, I agree it would be a lot more inconvenient if you were using gmail for office communication, but there are always phones to fall back on in critical situations.

  4. I only use Gmail for two things. I use Gmail as an alternate contact email for Jag support. I use Gmail to store daily crone jobs for my blog.

    In my experience when a mail server goes down you don’t loose email. it only delays the delivery of the email to your inbox.

  5. GMail has become my primary email address (I have two) but I also have my ISP/”Yahoo!” email addresses.

    I didn’t really notice that much. Yeah, OK, some email got delayed. My box wasn’t purged, and my contacts are still where I left them. So I don’t really see what the fuss is about.

    As for those folks using gMail as their “office” email… ahem… unless you’re paying Google to provide business or enterprise-level email services, stop it with the crying. Email is like anything else in this world – if you want uptime SLA’s, you gotta pay for them. Otherwise, drop to your backup, grab the phone, and conduct business like we did back in the 80’s, before the Internet got so ubiquitous.

  6. People should stop complaining about the downtime. It has been a blessing that Gmail has had minimal Downtime in years past.
    I hope we never lose this service as a free service. Imagine that having to pay for such a reliable product. So stop the whining.

  7. I agree George. Although some people claim they ARE paying for the business version. Who knows though.

    Ruben, they really should! I can’t believe how long they complained. A little downtime is normal for the internet… people should be used to it by now. 🙂

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