Over 53 percent of Facebook problems are total blackouts
“An error occurred. Please refresh to try viewing this page again”
Thousands of people across the United States attempting to log in to Facebook are greeted with a solid white page with various error reports: “An error occurred. Please refresh to try viewing this page again,” “The www.facebook page isn’t working. www.facebook is currently unable to handle this request. HTTP ERROR 500,” or “Sorry, something went wrong. We’re working on it and we’ll get it fixed as soon as possible.”
Many Facebookers have experienced the problems for weeks with no resolution. Other users are reporting emails coming from what appears to be Facebook stating “You haven’t been to Facebook for a few days, and a lot happened while you were away. Your messages will be deleted soon.” Below the message window are two icons giving the reader a choice to “View the message” or “Go to Facebook.”
These are new email scams that can force unsuspecting victims to click on a link in the message. The various websites will take users to websites that could be filled with malware which can infect your computer. It may also send victims to a website attempting to sell something, gather personal and financial information, or increase their web hits.
Most scammers use the bait of curiosity, offers, or panic to entice their various phishing attempts. This particular uptick in email scams tricks users into believing that Facebook has sent an email with a message that the social media company will delete all the user’s messages since they haven’t checked them out for long.
Over 53 percent of the most reported problems to Facebook in the past week have been total blackouts. Others are log in problems at 37 percent and app problems at 8 percent.
“My newsfeed has not loaded since last night, not on my computer nor on my Iphone.”
Barbara Bullington Decker of Amarillo, Texas reports “cannot get facebook page come up. Says can not load. It has been fine until last couple of hours.I have rebooted the router and unplugged all cords and reinserted them? I have turned off system and come back to it and still nothing.”
“My newsfeed has not loaded since last night, not on my computer nor on my Iphone,” said Martha Johannides of Lexington, Kentucky. “Iphone says network error. The other features seem functional, I just can’t see newsfeed directly.”
“I haven’t been able to connect to Facebook at all since Saturday night,” stated Margie Laupheimer in upstate New York. “All I get is a blank screen.”
Ken Opdycke in Cincinnati, Barbara Russell in Pacific Northwest Washington State, Dee Burnsides in Utah, Vicki Streifel in Baytown, Texas and Beverly VanAcker in Michigan report the same problem.
To make matters worse, users have no way to get help through Facebook since they can’t get into the site. Speculation across the Internet blog world blames the outages on a wide range of possibilities: “too many upgrades too fast,” “they are deliberately keeping me out because I support President Trump,” “their experimentations causes too many setbacks for us,” “they are interfering with China and China is answering back”
China banned Facebook in July 2009. In May 2017, Facebook silently launched a photo-sharing application called Colorful Balloons in that country. Similar to Facebook’s Moments app, it allows users to share photos with friends and family members. Instead of interfacing with Facebook, the app works with the country’s biggest social network, WeChat. Facebook released the app through a local company called Youge Internet Technology.
“If I can’t get on Facebook for days, weeks or months, what good does all this expansion do for us who left out in the cold?”
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has been working to find a way to get the social network reintroduced into the country since the WhatsApp was partially blocked in China in July 2017. He has met with governmental officials and Facebook has been working on software for the country that helps suppress posts from appearing in a specific geographic area.
On Wednesday, Facebook announced they are pushing a new platform called Watch into the market of original streaming video series. It will be available on mobile, desktop and laptop apps to a limited group of people in the U.S. before expanding to all users.
Facebook continues to experience growth, but many are asking at what cost to their current users.
“If I can’t get on Facebook for days, weeks or months,” said Martin Williamson of Colorado Springs. “What good does all this expansion do for us who left out in the cold?”
Currently Facebook and Google account for 20 percent of every ad dollar spent (online or off) and represent over 89 percent of the growth in online advertising in 2016. Some observers say the trends coming from Facebook, Google and Amazon is shifting the power so much that we will soon be at the mercy of just a few
The future doesn’t look bright. If we continue to ignore the shift in power, we’ll one day may be at their mercy with a barrage of controls steamrolling our abilities to gather information.