It’s really problematic that most people get their news via algorithmic news feeds.
On August 3, 2018, Facebook went down for 45 minutes. That’s a little baby outage compared to the one this week, when, on October 4, Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp were down for more than five hours. Three years ago, the 45-minute Facebook break was enough to get people to go read news elsewhere, Chartbeat‘s Josh Schwartz wrote for us at the time.
So what happened this time around? For a whopping five-hours-plus, people read news, according to data Chartbeat gave us this week. (And they went to Twitter; Chartbeat saw Twitter traffic up 72%. If Bad Art Friend had been published on the same day as the Facebook outage, Twitter would have literally exploded, presumably.)