August 09, 2007

Google Ignores Users During Major Blogger Outage

Last night, when I tried to make two posts to the blog, Google's Blogger service stalled out, saying "your publish is taking longer than expected." But try as I might, repeated attempts went nowhere. Turns out FTP Publishing through Blogger was seriously broken, and not just for me, as a well-trafficked Google Groups support board shows.

Starting around 4 p.m. Pacific Time on Wednesday, Blogger users who utilize the FTP Publishing option, as I do, were unable to post new stories. And while they tried to contact Google through the company's own Google Groups service, the company made absolutely no response. You can see the frustration mount...

  • Two hours in: "I'm seeing the same problem. Frustrating, isn't it?"
  • Four hours in: "blogger just sits and spins without successfully publishing anything"
  • Five hours in: "This is a serious problem! I can't believe it. Blogger should do something ASAP"

But Google didn't respond, and the service stayed down, driving users nuts.

  • "Google's customer service is abhorent. These treads are full of issues that are never resoolved" (sic)
  • "7 hours have passed since i first noticed FTP publishing was down..."
  • "What happens now? Do we just discuss the problem amongst ourselves until a Blogger technician takes pity on us, or what?"

For many, it seemed incredulous that a company like this would be completely dark when all of us were affected.

"It is pretty unbelievable that it has been down so long without any kind of acknowledgement or statement from Blogger. Take 30 seconds to post an update!"

"Come on Blogger? What's up? Anyone got a update for us? Anything? It's 4:24pm (CST) here, and we're well over 24 hours into this issue with no resolution, nor any Google/Blogger response"

Meanwhile, the company's Blogger Status page never updated, nor did the Help site or the Known Issues page. Google never acknowledged a problem, nor did they come to the discussion board where those seeing the issue were asking for answers.

At some point mid-day today, the issue cleared up, but instead of an apology or an explanation as to what happened, or why it won't happen again, the company's users were ignored, expected to accept the level of downtime. I know it certainly threw a crimp into my schedule, and I'm not all that happy about it. It's enough to make me once again make sure I have all my data backed up and can change platforms (again) if necessary. I hope that won't be the case, but to answer a serious outage with silence doesn't fill me with pleasure.