Skype Outage Overloads Twitter With Skype-Related Whining

Linda Sharps

The only thing worse than a major communications service going tits-up is the epic amount of complaining it causes, amirite? So many users attempted to tweet their frustration with Skype's outage today, Twitter was briefly reduced to serving up a fail whale.

My GOD, people. We were practically reduced to smoke signals for a while there.

Skype's interruption of service didn't bother me, as I am a Luddite who wants a damn phone with, like, two-way radio telecommunication over a cellular network of base stations when I make a call—because that's how phone calls are supposed to work, not by black magic Internet voodoo—but it certainly affected a lot of people and business activities today. Last year Skype accounted for an amazing 12 percent of the world’s international calling minutes, and the company recently announced a new milestone in traffic, with 25 million concurrent users.

Users across the globe reported issues accessing the service this morning, prompting the company to acknowledge the issue on Twitter. "Some of you may have problems signing in to Skype," the company said, probably triggering 10 million #NOSHITSHERLOCK responses. "We're investigating, and we're sorry for the disruption to your conversations."

Chaim Haas, a spokesman for Skype, explained to that the company's telephony network relies on millions of individual connections between computers and phones to stay up and running.

"Under normal circumstances, there are a large number of supernodes available. Unfortunately, today, many of them were taken offline by a problem affecting some versions of Skype."

Engineers created new "mega-supernodes" that solved the problem, Haas said. Sadly he did not address whether "Mega-Supernode" would, in fact, be a great name for a Marvel character.

After an hours-long interruption of service that prevented millions of users worldwide from ordering pizzas, dialing phone sex lines, and other phone-based activities, normal services had started returning to Skype as of about 3:30 p.m. EST. Whew.

Were you affected by the Skype outage today?

Image via

Read More