Real Talk

Facebook and Instagram Outage Proves How Much Families Rely on it

The temporary shutdown of Facebook and Instagram yesterday had users filing reports one after the other, proving just how dependent we are on social media.

No matter how much we don’t want our kids to be glued to social media, we cannot deny how important Facebook and Instagram are. Because it’s just so easy to use and navigate Facebook, it has become our source of content. And sometimes, even a source of income!

It was easy to create an account and page to start our own business or community which we could manage from anywhere, including home!

Why were Facebook and Instagram down on March 5, 2024?

Facebook, Instagram, and Threads, which are all social media apps under Meta, suddenly started crashing at around 11:00 PM (Philippine time). This caused users to be randomly logged out of their accounts. Despite the multiple changes in passwords and requests for OTP (one-time pins), nobody could log in on Facebook.

Instagram, on the other hand, kept users logged in but their feeds could not refresh the content.

For many bloggers and content creators who were unfamiliar with Meta’s workings, we could only assume the worst: someone was hacking our accounts. But after the two-hour outage, Meta spokesperson Andy Stone soon came out with a statement on X (formerly Twitter)—assuring all the users that the team has fixed all the issues.

Source: Andy Stone

While we’re all relieved that our social media platforms are working, the panic and the reported 500,000 filed user reports after the outage prove just how reliant we are on social media. Aside from feeling the “FOMO” (Fear of Missing Out), for many small-time business owners and immigrant families (or just about anyone for that matter) it was possibly the end: all their personal information was possibly in the hands of someone they didn’t know!

After all, no amount of password changes, security codes sent, and requests and OTP requests allowed us back into the platform during the outage.

Social media has become a necessity

Although this outage wasn’t as bad as the one in 2019—wherein Facebook and Instagram were down for 24 hours- it was what families posted on social media that made them panic this time. GCash accounts, addresses, and even pictures of their kids having fun—all this could have been in the grubby hands of online predators, hackers, and scammers.

But Facebook and Instagram’s outage proved two things: one, we can’t just let go of other outdated forms of communication, and two, we shouldn’t just post things we’re not ready to face the repercussions of. Social media platforms are still mirrors of the real world: it’s a safe space for some, but also a hunting ground for others.

Oh, and if you changed your password during that outage, remember to write it down in a notebook or keep a copy of it in your smartphone. That way, you won’t forget or call your kids to ask them what your password was.

More about social media?

10 Commandments for Every Kid and Teen Netizen
Types of Netizens That Kids or Teens Meet On Social Media
Mark Zuckerberg Apologizes to the Families Affected by Sexual Exploitation

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