On Wednesday afternoon, Twitter — a service now owned by a guy whose electric cars keep malfunctioning and causing accidents — started acting funky. Starting around 4:45pm EST, users started noticing they could no longer post messages on one of the world’s most popular social media service. There was a workaround to get tweets live again, and once people discovered it, the jokes started flying well before the problems had mostly but not completely subsided.
I just scheduled a Tweet for a minute from now. Twitter accepted it and then told me it would post on Feb 14th. Go home, Twitter. You’re drunk. I wonder when this will post.
— Neil Gaiman (@neilhimself) February 8, 2023
Mid-afternoon, people who tweet a lot — or just happened to be tweeting then — got a strange message when they hit the “tweet” button: “You are over the limit of sending daily tweets.” The problem affected not only people who tweet too much but even those who had tweeted once or even zero times that day.
There was a fix: Instead of clicking on “tweet,” people could simply schedule their post for a minute later (provided they selected the correct date). Soon Twitter was alive again, mostly with people complaining about how it was broken.
To make matters fishier, the outage happened the same day as a splashy — and ultimately fruitless — House oversight committee hearing led by the MAGA wing of the chamber into Twitter’s alleged suppression of Hunter Biden dick pics. There was a lot of shouting, sometimes by elected lawmakers who had repeatedly heckled President Joe Biden at his State of the Union address the night before. But by the end of the day they had, as Democrat Rep. Jamie Raskin put it, “turned up absolutely nothing.”
It’s unlikely the two incidents are related, but since, again, Twitter owner Elon Musk owns Tesla, some speculated on a connection.
So the day the Twitter files hearings backfire to show that Trump got more special treatment than any Democrat, the whole site implodes? Hmmm.
— Schooley (@Rschooley) February 8, 2023
It was bad timing in other ways, too.
Twitter going down the tubes right when the Timberwolves are negotiating a blockbuster trade during NBA trade deadline week is extra cruel
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) February 8, 2023
nintendo fans finding out twitter is broken and they can’t live tweet during the nintendo direct pic.twitter.com/TSKvdlOLcv
— sita (@twilisita) February 8, 2023
Direct messages were also suddenly AWOL.
FUCK THE TWITTER DMS
— The Iron Sheik (@the_ironsheik) February 8, 2023
Some pointed out Twitter isn’t the only unreliable Musk product.
Elon has literally broken the ability of Twitter to *tweet*, but sure, Teslas can handle the driving for you. #tesla #twitter #elonmusk
— JeffLowell (@JeffLowell) February 8, 2023
Those who figured out the workaround were quick to fling jokes.
Twitter is in Hell
— Satan (@s8n) February 8, 2023
Twitter not working #Twitter #twitterdown pic.twitter.com/Oo2lyqjcJG
— ARHAM_PTI28 (@28_pti) February 8, 2023
Someone at Twitter right now trying to fix the bug for why everyone is overlimit on their daily tweets.#TwitterDown pic.twitter.com/3xRwwpXouA
— Wall Street Silver (@WallStreetSilv) February 8, 2023
Finn apologises for breaking twitter pic.twitter.com/y5kEToBHXB
— Dave Krantz (@weskrantz) February 8, 2023
I know who can fix Twitter pic.twitter.com/sAHjbIQA99
— Chris Evangelista (@cevangelista413) February 8, 2023
Elon Musk trying to keep #DarkBrandon from trending after he handed the GOP their ass at #sotu2023 . #TwitterDown pic.twitter.com/Nc1hxiNteH
— and so we crumble (@literal_analogy) February 8, 2023
Twitter if Elon Musk never bought it pic.twitter.com/1I9Mz70aE8
— ryan (@scubaryan_) February 8, 2023
Every person trying to use Twitter for the past hour pic.twitter.com/uhCsIGCuDO
— Ringer Dish (@RingerDish) February 8, 2023
Twitter breaking up with us like, “It’s not you, it’s me.”
— Hank Green (@hankgreen) February 8, 2023
Even Dictionary.com threw some shade.
used as an exclamation expressing disgust, aversion, horror, or the like.
Example: “Ugh, Twitter.”https://t.co/ZcschniEQ5
— Dictionary.com (@Dictionarycom) February 8, 2023
Surely, some pointed out, the Musk die-hards weren’t giving up on their hero.
The stans react to “Schedule It” Twitter pic.twitter.com/VNmUUFvNvJ
— Eli Valley (@elivalley) February 8, 2023
A bit before 6pm EST, things started getting back to normal.
Twitter may not be working as expected for some of you. Sorry for the trouble. We’re aware and working to get this fixed.
— Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) February 8, 2023
Which prompted more jokes.
— Carl Quintanilla (@carlquintanilla) February 8, 2023
Elon’s dumbass looking for the engineers he fired. https://t.co/Ski0kycIEa pic.twitter.com/kOTcREEane
— Michelle (@_lafilleennoir) February 8, 2023
In the past we would’ve likely already gotten a pretty good idea from Twitter Support of what exactly the error was and why it was occurring.
But, you know… *gestures at Twitter in 2023* https://t.co/uoXjDWlJYQ
— Stephen Nehrenz (@StephenNehrenz) February 9, 2023
Of course, it’s unclear who saved the day.
i fixed twitter
— wint (@dril) February 8, 2023
As it happened, the outage happened mere hours after MAGA lawmakers, who failed to prove the government had coerced them into burying dick pics of the current president’s son, singled out Musk for saving Twitter from…well, from not having weird outages.
mere hours before Twitter temporarily died for reasons that remain unclear, numerous House Republicans were literally thanking God for Elon Musk pic.twitter.com/gIjwxmB1qL
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) February 8, 2023