On Friday, Instagram was temporarily down, though some users thought that the outage was an April Fools' Day prank.
According to reports on the outage, Instagram was down for at least 15 minutes, worldwide. Visitors to the app were met with the error messages "Couldn't refresh feed" and "Couldn't load news." The website was just as bad, greeting users with the message "5xx Server Error." When the service was down, users flocked to other social media outlets to vent their frustrations. "Instagram be like, 'April fool's b,' [sic]" tweeted one user with the image of the app's error message. Another called the outage "the worst April Fool's [sic] joke EVER." The outage does not appear to have been related to April Fools' Day at all, other than having occurred on April 1st. Instagram has not yet commented on the outage, but the service is back up and running. The company posted an April Fools' tweet (unrelated to this incident) that reads, "The key to a successful #AprilFools prank? Choosing the unwitting subject." The tweet linked to a video of a dog sitting under an umbrella "who clearly has no idea the rain is just for him."
This outage comes as Instagram is preparing to transition to its new algorithmic feed. Earlier this month, Instagram announced the upcoming change, saying that the algorithmic feed will "be ordered to show the moments we believe you will care about the most." Instagram claims that users miss, on average, 70% of their feeds with the current, chronological setup, and hopes to amend this. This "new experience," as Instagram calls it, will roll out over the coming months.
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