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Massive Facebook Outage

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Massive Facebook Outage
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It’s not just you. Facebook is undergoing an outage today, March 13, 2019. The outage appears to have started at noon eastern time, which is about 9 AM Pacific. This outage is preventing many people from posting to Facebook onto their news feed.

The outage is affecting new posts from being created. What happens is that Facebook stalls when fetching a preview.

Massive Facebook Outage

Clicking the submit button results in an error message:

Massive Facebook Outage

This outage also extends to Facebook’s Sharing Debugger

Massive Facebook Outage

The error message cites that the URL has not been shared before as a reason why the URL cannot be debugged.  Clicking the “Fetch new information” button does not result in an error message. The screen returns to the same error.

Outage Affects Partial Links

I tried a workaround to adding a link by removing this portion of the URL: https://www.

But removing that part of the URL still resulted in the error message below:

Screenshot of an error message indicating that a post with a partial link cannot be submitted

However, I was able to post part of a link if I inserted a space between the dot and the com.

Screenshot of a successful post to Facebook.

The Outage Does Not Affect  All Posts

This outage does not affect posts that don’t feature links. As you can see in this screenshot, I was able to make a test post:

Massive Facebook Outage

Facebook Outage Related to Links?

This outage may be affecting posts that contain links. There is something about how Facebook is fetching links, or more accurately, Facebook’s inability to fetch links, that is causing Facebook to not be able to process posts.

Facebook Outage Related to Images?

Interestingly, Facebook users are unable to upload images to posts (hat tip to Rob Woods @robdwoods) . So this may be a clue to what’s happening as well. Could it be that something in the way Facebook is processing or fetching images is causing the Facebook outage?

Why Would Links Cause an Issue When Posting to Facebook?

Obviously, Facebook is changing something related to how it fetches links that are intended for sharing. Facebook has been under increasing scrutiny because of fake information that is being shared on it’s platform. It’s possible that Facebook was introducing a news filter related to links and that something at the crawler level is stopping the post from completing.

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Roger Montti

Roger Montti is an SEO consultant & web publisher with nearly 20 years experience. He offers Site Audits for ranking ... [Read full bio]

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