Users around the world have complained of issues with sending, receiving and accessing their direct messages across the three apps, which are all owned by Facebook, which recently changed its name to Meta.
The last time the apps were down, it took several hours before the problems could be resolved and normal service resumed.
There is yet to be any official word about what caused the apps to stop functioning properly. The last time they stopped working, it took more than a day after the outage for the reason behind it to be revealed. On that occasion, it was caused by a maintenance worker inputting some faulty code.
More than 100 billion messages are sent across Facebook’s family of apps each day, with Instagram and Messenger sharing the same underlying infrastructure.
You can follow all the latest updates on the outage right here.
Hello and welcome...
19:24 , Anthony Cuthbertson
to The Independent’s live coverage of the latest Facebook outage, which is impacting Meta-owned apps Facebook, Instagram and Messenger.
We’ve reached out to Facebook for comment and will be bringing you all the latest updates as we get them.
Reason for last outage explained
19:32 , Anthony Cuthbertson
While we wait for an explanation of what’s going on, here’s what Facebook said following the massive outage on 4 October:
“The underlying cause of this outage also impacted many of the internal tools and systems we use in our day-to-day operations, complicating our attempts to quickly diagnose and resolve the problem,” the company said in a blog post the following day.
“Our engineering teams have learned that configuration changes on the backbone routers that coordinate network traffic between our data centers caused issues that interrupted this communication. This disruption to network traffic had a cascading effect on the way our data centres communicate, bringing our services to a halt.”
Facebook down: Meta issues statement
19:36 , Anthony Cuthbertson
We’ve just heard from Meta (Facebook’s new name).
Here’s what the company said in an emailed statement to us:
“We’re aware that some people are having trouble accessing Messenger, Workplace Chat and Instagram DMs. We’re working to get things back to normal as quickly as possible and we apologize for any inconvenience.”
Facebook Messenger started malfunctioning at 2:04pm, report says
19:45 , Nathan Place
Facebook Messenger has been down since 2:04pm Eastern Daylight Time, according to the outage monitor Down Detector. Problems on Facebook itself began at 2:08, as well as on Instagram.
— Downdetector (@downdetector) November 3, 2021
Instagram service appears to be resuming
19:56 , Anthony Cuthbertson
Instagram appears to be working again, with users once again able to access their direct messages.
Outage reports for Instagram have also dropped massively in the last few minutes. Issues with Messenger and the Facebook app seem to be persisting.
Meta linked Facebook and Instagram messaging apps last year, possibly doubling outage
19:57 , Nathan Place
Part of the reason the messaging apps on Facebook and Instagram are down at the same time could be that Meta linked them last year.
In 2020, Meta (still called “Facebook” at that point) introduced an update that allowed Facebook Messenger users to send messages directly to Instagram users, and vice versa. While more convenient for some people, it also means that any outage impacting one messaging service will likely affect the other.
Read more here:
Twitter users mock Facebook outage, just days after company tried to rebrand itself
20:11 , Nathan Place
As Meta’s apps struggle to come back online, Twitter users are roasting the newly renamed social media company.
“When things aren't working - can we use the phrase 'that's so meta'?” one user asked. “Based on the fact Facebook, Instagram and Messenger keep going down?”
“Instagram is down again,” another wrote. “Can Mark [Zuckerberg] do something about it rather than finding s****y names for Facebook?”
— Astro • studying 📌 (@kristsupremacy) November 3, 2021
Facebook is receiving thousands more problem reports than usual, report says
20:31 , Nathan Place
Since about 2pm today, Facebook has received far more outage reports than on a typical day, according to Down Detector. At 2:48pm, those complaints reached 2,560 above the norm.
— Downdetector (@downdetector) November 3, 2021
Twitter users mock Instagram’s outage
20:56 , Nathan Place
As Instagram’s messaging feature remains offline, some users have mocked the outage on Twitter.
“Instagram goes down more than the McDonald’s ice cream machine,” one disaffected user commented.
“Twitter is the king forever,” another wrote. “There goes Instagram and Facebook. Down again.”
— Troll (@Trollface_T__T) November 3, 2021
— Alex Culé (@alexculee) November 3, 2021
Facebook Messenger appears to be coming back online
21:08 , Nathan Place
Facebook Messenger appears to be working again, at least in New York City, and Down Detector has reported a major drop in outage complaints. It’s possible the site is coming back to normal.
Instagram messages come back online as well
21:19 , Nathan Place
Instagram’s messaging feature appears to have come back online as well, indicating that Meta’s second outage in two months may be coming to an end. Similar to Facebook, Instagram has shown a plunge in its number of outage reports on Down Detector.