For users of Facebook and Instagram (aka pretty much everyone) Wednesday dawned as something of an internet apocalypse. Both services began experiencing significant issues around 8:04 a.m. ET, issues that ranged from some weird glitches such as images and videos not loading at all to full-blown outages in some cases. At the time of this article's writing several hours later, many of those issues remain unresolved with frustrated users demanding to know what's causing this Insta-mageddon. Now, Anonymous is weighing in, letting everyone know that they're not responsible for this.
On Twitter, the international hacktivist group that does have a reputation for its various DDoS cyber-attacks posted a simple message on Wednesday afternoon: "We swear we didn't do it this time."
We swear we didn't do it this time #FacebookDown— Anonymous (@YourAnonNews) July 3, 2019
The responses to the tweet are actually pretty great, a healthy mix of general commentary about the outage and various GIFs and memes expressing disbelief at Anonymous' assertions. One thing that was mentioned a few times was the fact that Anonymous generally operates as a decentralized group with no formal leadership structure so it theoretically wouldn't be impossible that some other Anonymous-affiliated person was involved.
Whatever the actual cause of the outage, it's turning out to be something of an eye-opening experience for users. With things not working correctly, users are getting a bit of an eye-opening look at how Facebook's facial recognition AI works. With images not loading, descriptions are popping up instead that are, in many cases, eerily accurate, a reminder of just how much data is available in something as simple in a photo.
The outage is also serving as a reminder for some at just how much a part of daily life our social media services have become. With Facebook and Instagram both not working correctly, users have been flooding Twitter as a communication outlet -- including Facebook. Their official Twitter account noted the outage earlier on Wednesday and told users that they "are working to get things back to normal as quickly as possible." It's a reminder that's become a bit more frequent than perhaps is comfortable as of late. Facebook and Instagram (which is owned by Facebook) suffered several major outages last year and as for 2019, today's outage marks the fourth major issue thus far. Both services had widespread issues last month, back in April, and a couple of times in March as well.
What do you think about Anonymous' claim they had nothing to do with this Facebook outage? Have you been impacted by the social media service being down? Let us know in the comments below!