LinkedIn Downtime Turning Heads

    October 10, 2008

If LinkedIn has its way, the image of a blue-robed wizard will become nowhere near as familiar as Twitter’s fail whale.  But in what might be a good or bad sign for the company, this symbol of downtime is indeed being seen more frequently.

The downtime pros at Pingdom have documented several lasting outages in just the past month or so.  First, on September 6th, LinkedIn was unavailable for five hours and 25 minutes.  On September 3rd, it was inaccessible for another 30 minutes.  Add 2.5 hours from October 2nd, along with one hour and five minutes from October 9th, and a real trend starts to appear.

So what’s it mean?  Well, at least one of the outages was supposedly due to maintenance.  Otherwise, something isn’t functioning too well, and no company wants that.

There’s a potential silver lining, though.  An entry on Pingdom’s blog states, "The website’s recurring availability issues are making us wonder if LinkedIn has perhaps started to run into scaling issues.  According to their website, LinkedIn currently has more than 25 million users, compared to 14 million a year ago.  That’s almost a doubling of their user base in just a year."  And growth is desirable.

Here’s a good news/bad news scenario, then.  The economy’s problems are liable to encourage many more people to check out LinkedIn.  Yet the site may take some dings in the reputation department or even lose users to its competitors if the downtime issue isn’t soon resolved.