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World Cup traffic runs over Twitter

No, it's not just you: Twitter was swamped with people chattering about the United States' epic 1-0 win over Algeria today. And Twitter traffic will only get worse as the tournament advances--if you haven't already, you should get used to the sight of the "Fail Whale" graphic the status-update site displays when it's swamped with traffic.


Twitter acknowledged its growing role as the online equivalent of a packed sports bar in a blog post on Friday that cited the "tweets per second," or TPS, posted about certain World Cup goals. The World Cup record as of then was the 2,940 TPS clocked when Japan scored on Cameroon June 14. I don't know about you, but I can't wait to see the (ahem) TPS report for Landon Donovan's stoppage-time goal.

For the next time, I'll offer four possible workarounds for swamped servers at Twitter and other sites.

1) If your attempt to post an update only yields an error on your phone or the Twitter site, don't assume it vanished. Twitter's servers may simply have been unable to get an acknowledgment back to your browser or program, as you may find out the next time you can see your own past updates.

2) Check Twitter's status page to see if you're really out of luck or just posting at the wrong fraction of a second.

3) Repeat your all-caps exultation on Facebook, any other social media site or perhaps, a comments thread on a soccer blog.

4) Ignore the fact that you're supposed to be at work and shout "GOOOAALLLL!" and "USA! USA! USA!" as if you were at home or in a bar.

1:27: And here's a fifth tip I forgot before: Using Twitter's stripped-down mobile your desktop or laptop can sometimes work when its regular home page doesn't. Got any other suggestions? The comments are yours....

By Rob Pegoraro  |  June 23, 2010; 11:59 AM ET
Categories:  Digital culture , Social media , Tips  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Google Voice now open to all in the U.S.
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Couple of off-topic items:
New software for the Nook, ver 1.4, now I can get it to connect to my Apple Airport.

New version of Firefox out as well.

Posted by: wiredog | June 23, 2010 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Twitter doesn't like proxy servers either.

Posted by: tuzoner | June 23, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I blame the Twitter break down on the soccerball graphic for #worldcup. Though it's nice to feel like you're getting one over on someone by making the tweet 141 characters.

I'd like to see them add a dead bird graphic for #oilspill.

Posted by: NotForYou1 | June 23, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Yeeeeeeah, Rob, I'm gonna need you to go ahead and get that TPS report to me pronto. Mmmmkaaaaay? Greaaat.

Posted by: cbr1 | June 24, 2010 9:18 AM | Report abuse

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