Redditors are pretty protective of their Imgur. Though they may lambast the free image hosting site every now and then for having a tendency to be down for extended periods of time, redditors know that Imgur is their friend. And reddit is Imgur’s friend as well, as the site recently hit 2 billion pageviews per month. Of course, we can give a lot of the credit for that impressive figure to the reddit community.
So, it’s no surprise that a post detailing how Imgur was being blocked by Facebook for supposed malicious links rose to the top of the front page Monday evening.
“The content you’re trying to share includes a link that’s been blacked for being spammy or unsafe,” said the warning message.
Here’s a screencap courtesy redditor AmericanDerp:
The post quickly generated hundreds of comments, including one from user fisherrider about three hours after the original post appeared. User fisherrider just happens to work for Facebook and took the time to explain exactly how the Imgur problem was his fault:
Hey folks – so this is actually my fault. Literally, I’m the guy who accidentally blocked imgur for a brief period of time today. I’m really sorry.
Some background: I’m an engineer who works on the system we use for catching malicious URLs. In the process of dealing with a bad URL that our automated defenses didn’t catch, I ran into a rare bug that caused us to incorrectly block some legitimate URLs for a brief time. Right after I figured that out and removed the bad data, I reworked the UI so no one will get bit by the same issue in the future.
As a form of apology that I’m sure is insufficient, here is a picture of my dog dressed up for the 4th of July: http://imgur.com/pR4mR .[edit: don’t put a period right after the . in the imgur link, as apparently the reddit mobile site linkifies the .]
It appears that the picture of the dog in the scarf + the sincere apology was enough to win over the miffed redditors. This, my friends, is a PR win.