Social media platform X back online after global outage

21 December 2023, 09:14

Twitter logo
Twitter logo. Picture: PA

The outage lasted around 45 minutes before user timelines began to display as normal.

Social media platform X is back online following a global outage on Thursday morning with users briefly unable to see their timelines.

Thousands of people took to the website Downdetector, which tracks online outages, to report issues with the platform’s mobile app and website.

Almost 4,000 outage reports had been made to the site at 6am.

Twitter logo
Billionaire Elon Musk took over the platform in a 44 billion dollar (£33.6 billion) deal last autumn (Yui Mok/PA)

Some users attempting to log into their X accounts found their timelines empty, with the home page displaying only the message: “Welcome to X!”

However, users were still be able to post tweets, with the hashtag #TwitterDown starting to trend on the site within minutes of reports of the outages emerging, although those tweets could not be seen.

The outage lasted around 45 minutes before user timelines began to show as normal.

Billionaire Elon Musk took over the platform, formerly known as Twitter, in a 44 billion dollar (£33.6 billion) deal last autumn.

Since then, the Tesla and SpaceX boss has laid off more than half of the company’s global workforce, with some critics warning the skeleton staff left could struggle to keep the site online in the event of any technical issues.

Mr Musk has not yet commented on the outage, nor as X as a company or chief executive Linda Yaccarino.

X does not currently have a communications team in the UK to contact for a response to the outage.

The incident continues a difficult week for the social media giant, which on Monday was confirmed as the subject of an official investigation by the EU under its new Digital Service Act (DSA), tough new social media regulations designed to curb the spread of toxic content online.

European Commissioner Thierry Breton said the site was being investigated over “suspected breaches” of rules around obligations to counter illegal content and disinformation, as well as a potential breach of transparency rules.

He said regulators would also look into concerns X’s user interface had a “deceptive design”, in particular around its blue tick badge verification system.

In response to the investigation, the social media company said: “X remains committed to complying with the Digital Services Act, and is co-operating with the regulatory process.

“It is important that this process remains free of political influence and follows the law.

“X is focused on creating a safe and inclusive environment for all users on our platform, while protecting freedom of expression, and we will continue to work tirelessly towards this goal.”

By Press Association

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