Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp working again after worldwide outages

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A man holds a smart phone with the icons for the social networking apps Facebook, Instagram and Twitter seen on the screen. (Photo by Kirill KUDRYAVTSEV / AFP) (Photo credit should read KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP via Getty Images)

(WJW/AP) — Facebook was reportedly down for tens of thousands of users starting just after 11:30 a.m. Monday, with Instagram and WhatsApp also suffering outages.

As of 6:20 p.m., scattered users have reported partial restoration of one service or another.

Websites and apps often suffer outages of varying size and duration, but hours-long global disruptions are rare.

Facebook spokesperson Andy Stone acknowledged the outages earlier today in a tweet saying, “We’re working to get things back to normal as quickly as possible, and we apologize for any inconvenience.”

At 6:30 p.m., Stone said platforms were coming back online:

Mark Zuckerberg himself made a statement as well:

According to Downdetector.com, Facebook was down for over 3,000 users as of 7:30 p.m., a far cry from the 125,000-plus users who had issues in the afternoon.

Earlier today, when the websites were still down for thousands, and the CTO of Facebook took to Twitter to apologize to users:

The outage is impacting users on both desktop and mobile.

To report an outage or to get updates from Downdetector.com, click here.

Doug Madory, director of internet analysis for Kentik Inc., said it appears that the routes Facebook advertises online that tell the entire internet how to reach its properties are not available.

Madory said it looks like the DNS routes that Facebook makes available to the networking world have been withdrawn. The Domain Name System is an integral element of how traffic on the internet is routed. DNS translates an address like “facebook.com” to an IP address like 123.45.67.890. If Facebook’s DNS records have disappeared, no one could find it.

Facebook is going through a major crisis after the whistleblower who was the source of The Wall Street Journal’s series of stories exposing the company’s awareness of internal research into the negative effects of its products and decisions went public on “60 Minutes” on Sunday.

Frances Haugen was identified in a “60 Minutes” interview Sunday as the woman who anonymously filed complaints with federal law enforcement that the company’s own research shows how it magnifies hate and misinformation, leads to increased polarization and that Instagram, specifically, can harm teenage girls’ mental health.

The Journal’s stories, called “The Facebook Files,” painted a picture of a company focused on growth and its own interests instead of the public good. Facebook has tried to play down the research. Nick Clegg, Clegg, the company’s vice president of policy and public affairs, wrote to Facebook employees in a memo Friday that “social media has had a big impact on society in recent years, and Facebook is often a place where much of this debate plays out.”

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