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How important is uptime in Social networks?

Apparently not too important to the folks at Bebo According to Royal Pingdom (great name by the way) which measures downtime using Pingdom’s uptime monitoring service.

Bebo’s downtime has increased significantly lately and has had by far the most downtime of the 14 social networks monitored for the survey. More than 12 hours of downtime in less than two months is a lot, and it could possibly be caused by the new open application platform that Bebo launched in December, allowing third-party developers access to its platform, Facebook style. It could be putting more strain on Bebo’s systems than they anticipated.

The two giants in the field, MySpace (with 25 minutes of downtime) and Facebook (with one hour and 35 minutes of downtime), can both be considered to be within acceptable limits, especially MySpace.

Social networks, just like any other websites, will occasionally suffer from downtime, either planned or unplanned. However, social networks have a different type of usage than most websites, with frequent visits from the same user and many page views per visit. Therefore downtime can often be even more noticeable and frustrating to social network users.

Below are the results of the survey.

Social Network Home page (monitored) Downtime in 2008 (until Feb 25)
Bebo www.bebo.com 12h 28m
Windows Live Spaces spaces.live.com 7h 25m
Friendster www.friendster.com 6h 0m
hi5 www.hi5.com 5h 5m
Reunion.com www.reunion.com 2h 55m
LinkedIn www.linkedin.com 4h 0m
Classmates.com www.classmates.com 2h 5m
Facebook www.facebook.com 1h 35m
Orkut www.orkut.com 1h 10m
Last.fm www.last.fm 1h 10m
Xanga www.xanga.com 45m
MySpace www.myspace.com 25m
LiveJournal www.livejournal.com 10m
Yahoo! 360 360.yahoo.com 5m

* According to Royal Pingdom: If a web page is not reachable, returns an error, or takes longer than 30 seconds to load, it is considered as down. Downtime is always confirmed from two geographically separate locations.

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The Deets

Marc Meyer is a Digital and Social Media Strategist at DRMG. This is my personal blog where I share observations, thoughts and opinions that are all my own.

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