The world's favourite social networking site Facebook went down for maintenance purposes for most users earlier this morning but seems up and working right now. The downtime caused widespread panic, with users venting on other social networking websites like Twitter.
At around 9:30 AM IST, users from across the world started reporting seeing a message as they tried to log in to Facebook that informed them that the site was down. The message read, "Facebook Will Be Back Soon Facebook is down for required maintenance right now, but you should be able to get back on within a few minutes. In the meantime, read more about why you're seeing this message. Thanks for your patience as we improve the site."
Most users joked around that it was possibly Thursday evening Valentine's Day messages being passed around between lovers in the U.S at that point of time that took the site down. But it is pretty possible that Facebook could have been facing downtime when the issue cropped up.
Facebook responded to International Business Times about the site's unavailability saying, "If you're seeing this message when you log in, it usually means that we're making an improvement to the database that your account is stored on. While we're doing this, you won't be able to access your account. We're sorry for the temporary inconvenience. After the maintenance is over, you'll still be able to log in with the same password. Your account will not be affected by the maintenance. We don't do site maintenance on all accounts at the same time, so it's possible that your friends will be able to access the site while your account is unavailable."
Sounds alright, Facebook, but why would you choose to undertake this exercise at around 10 PM EST on Valentine's Day?
Facebook currently has been rolling out Graph Search, the social networking website's 'big' new search tool announced in January. It could be possible that the site's downtime could be related to ironing chinks out with Graph Search, trying to make it better.
This new search function - dubbed as the 'third pillar of Facebook' by Zuckerberg – promises to help you discover human connections in your social sphere, tailored to suit your needs.
Facebook says that Graph Search functions very differently from web search. While on the web you would search for 'rock music' on Graph Search you could search for 'My friends in Mumbai who like rock music' and you will get tailored results of people, photos, events and more on Facebook.
It could also be possible that Facebook is down for routine maintenance work. With over a billion users on the website, it could get difficult for the social networking giant to even conduct routine check-ups of the site without throwing users into a panic.
If the website is still not up for you, we'd suggest you wait for a while. Facebook is up and running on our PCs for now. If this message is thrown up for more than 24 hours, you can contact Facebook about the issue here.