Net@night 155

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Net@night
Episode 155


Net@night 155: Ask Me Anything

Twitter instability, quality time on-line, Google Pacman trouble, Formspring, and more.

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A new study from Nielsen showing Internet usage in April 2010, 22% of the time, you’re engaging with social media.

Yeah, 22% might not seem like a mammoth percentage, but you have to take into account the fact that this finding is on a global scale. Also, a few more telling takeaways from the report:

• Currently, three quarters of Internet users worldwide visit a social network or blog when they go online — that’s a 24% increase over last year.

• Joe Average (the international version) spends 66% more time on these sites than he did a year ago — for example, your average user spent 6 hours on these sites in April 2010, while last year he spent 3 hours, 31 minutes.


Twitter’s been having a rough month keeping the service stable, and the micro-blogging service is willing to admitting it. For the last few weeks, Twitter has been experiencing constant errors, fail whales and downtime, culminating in yesterday’s extended downtime and today’s high error rate.

In a short blog post, Twitter’s Sean Garrett didn’t mince words: “From a site stability and service outage perspective, it’s been Twitter’s worst month since last October.”

Twitter has been working on improving its system in anticipation of the World Cup, but according to Garrett, the company has uncovered deeper issues with its architecture — some so deep-rooted that they’ve caused unanticipated downtime. Several days ago, Twitter engineer Jean-Paul Cozzatti explained that the issues stem from several critical mistakes setting up and maintaining its internal network.

I’ve spoken to members of the Twitter team about the issue, and for them the downtime really boils down to the tidal wave of Twitter activity surrounding the World Cup. Having issues from growth that surpasses all of your expectations is a good problem to have, but perhaps Twitter should have expected this level of activity given its large international userbase. To fix the issue, Twitter will likely take the service down during the next two weeks to make repairs and perform maintenance. The time frame — two weeks — makes us think that these issues aren’t simple fixes. Expect the high rate of errors and unexpected downtime to continue for a while longer.



Facebook is now the fifth largest video site by audience size. ComScore estimates that 41 million people a month watch videos on Facebook, which is more than on Hulu, CBS,, or Microsoft’s sites. What is remarkable about Facebook’s rise as a video destination is that it isn’t even trying very hard to be a video site. “I don’t think Facebook has video strategy per se,” says TubeMogul CEO Brett Wilson.

TubeMogul tracks video analytics across the Web, and it just released some interesting data on how videos and video ads perform on Facebook compared to other sites. On average, people who click on a video from Facebook are more engaged. They tend to watch longer than viewers who arrive from other sources— 1:45 minutes per view versus !:32 for Google (Twitter users are almost the same with 1:44 minutes per view).


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Production Information

  • Edited by: Tony
  • Notes:
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