Amazon Down? Only For The Web Monitors

Written by Frank Hayes
July 5th, 2011

The curse of the Web site upgrade has struck again. But fortunately for Amazon, which Web-monitoring service Pingdom reported to be down for more than three days last week, the E-tailer’s site was working fine. The Amazon-is-down alert “referred to a problem we had getting to Amazon due to something they’d done with their system,” a Pingdom spokesman later explained. “Amazon started treating monitoring services [and most bots in general, if they presented themselves as such] slightly differently for a while. Most likely it wasn’t even intentional, just some side effect.”

This isn’t the first time E-tail updates have wrecked havoc with uptime tracking systems, as 1-800-Flowers discovered in February. Exactly what Amazon changed to confuse Pingdom’s bots isn’t clear; Amazon wouldn’t comment. And in fairness, it’s not an E-tailer’s job to play nice with monitoring services. But something at Amazon continues to drive monitoring sites a little crazy. On July 1, after the Pingdom problem was cleared up, there was a rash of Twitter reports that Amazon was down. They were based in part on the popular site, which reported: “It’s not just you! looks down from here.” As of tonight, that site still thinks Amazon is down.


2 Comments | Read Amazon Down? Only For The Web Monitors

  1. Brad Says:

    Gentlemen- too be factual, the headline should have said “Amazon down? Only for Pingdom”
    Monitoring companies, and monitoring technology, use different methodologies to monitor, and different checks against false alerts etc… I cannot speak for other monitoring companies, but in our case at Dotcom-Monitor we did not see the downtime reported at Amazon.

  2. Evan Schuman Says:

    To be fully precise, it should have said “only for some Web monitors.” As the story noted, it was hardly just Pingdom. Even saw it having crashed. But not all such monitors saw it that way.


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