YouTube Down, Outage Sparks Outrage on Social Media

by Caitlin Berard

Who among us can say that they’ve never fallen down a YouTube rabbit hole at least once, finding themselves 10 videos and 3 hours deep after a casual search?

To call YouTube a popular website would be a vast understatement. The video sharing and social media platform is the second most visited site on the web in the world second only to Google itself.

And though YouTube outages are rare, just like any other website, they do happen. The difference, however, is that when YouTube goes down, the response from users is nothing short of cataclysmic.

The massively popular streaming site is currently receiving thousands of reports from users from all across the country, complaining that the website isn’t loading videos. The vast majority of the reports on Downdetector indicate that the problem isn’t with loading the website or app but with loading individual videos.

Users Respond After YouTube Streaming Goes Down

The cause of the outage remains unknown. Though YouTube could be down due to planned maintenance, it could also be the result of a problem with the website and app or malicious activity. YouTube has yet to address the outage on any of its accounts. YouTube users, on the other hand, immediately took to social media to give their thoughts on the inconvenience.

“I went to four streams and they were putting in the buffering symbol,” one user wrote. “YOUTUBE STREAMS ARE DOWN???? WHAT DID TWITCH DO,” another (half) joked. “Uh… apparently YouTube streams are down for everyone? Send help and bring back my chat pls,” complained a third.

Complaints Spike Following New Ad Structure

The current YouTube outage isn’t the only time the social media platform has enraged its users this week. Rather than complaining about the site being down, however, the other spike in complaints came as the result of a new type of ads called “ad pods.”

Now, ads on YouTube are nothing new, but with the new pods, some users have reported receiving upwards of 10 unskippable ads ahead of a single video. The site received thousands upon thousands of complaints, forcing them to address the undesired shift.

According to YouTube, the ad pods were an effort to reduce ad breaks. “We ran a small experiment globally that served multiple ads in an ad pod when viewers watched longer videos on connected TVs,” they explained to 9to5Google. “The goal is to build a better experience for viewers by reducing ad breaks. We have concluded this small experiment.”