Downdetector is an online platform which provides the users with real-time information regarding the status of websites. The information which is provided by the website is based upon user outage reports, which are collected from several sources, including the comment section of each website’s page on Downdetector and Twitter.
Also, a map is shown with the locations of the outage reports, and a list of cities with the corresponding number of reports is shown above the map.
Based on the research, Downdetector was founded in April 2012 by Tom Sanders and Sander van de Graaf. It was acquired by Ookla, the company behind Speedtest.net, in August 2018.
Downdetector – Tracking the services which matter to you
Downdetector offers real-time status and outage information for all kinds of services which the users consider vital to their everyday lives and work. It is available for:
- Mobile providers
- Internet providers
- Online services
- Online games
How Downdetector works?
Downdetector collects status reports from some sources, including Twitter and reports submitted on their sites and mobile apps. Their system validates and analyzes those reports in real-time, allowing them to detect outages and service disruptions automatically in our very early stages.
A single person reporting an issue does not constitute a large-scale outage. To en sure that outages are properly represented, they calculate a baseline of typical issue reports for each company that they monitor. By verifying that problems are affecting a large group of individuals, Downdetector only reports an outage once the number of reports is significantly higher than the baseline.
Once a webpage is not loading or you are having issues logging into your service, you are able to turn to Downdetector to see what’s occurring. Downdetector is the most popular source in the world for user-generated status information. It tracks over 6,000 services across 45 countries. Each Downdetector company status page reveals details about where other people have reported problem with a service.
Also, it displays tweets and comments from a community of other users who are trying to troubleshoot the issue. Frequently, the users of Downdetector are aware of potential issues long before the service provider itself has reported a problem. In other cases, the users may believe that they are experiencing a problem with an app, only to know the source of the problem is actually with their internet service provider.
How Downdetector collects reports about an issue?
Besides problem reports submitted directly on Downdetector status pages, a website or service’s status information is collected from user interactions with some sources across the web, including search engines like Google and social media platforms like Twitter.
This gives a holistic view of a perceived service interruption. The great way for the users to report an issue with an online service is through the service’s status page on Downdetector’s site. By clicking the “I have a problem with [Service]” button, easily a user can report a problem, plus signify type of issue they are having from a list of common problems.
Also, Downdetector collects data regarding the status of a service through Twitter. Each company is configured with a list of inclusion words which are used to signify tweets that may be relevant to the status of that company’s online service.
Usually, a tweet is scored on the basis of relevance to the monitored company and the sentiment of the content to decide whether it should be counted as an issue report. Aside from that, Downdetector also looks at other key indicators from across the web to decide if an incredible volume of users is having problems with a monitored company or service.
How Downdetector attributes outage reports to a location?
The users of Downdetector are able to see quickly whether other users in their area are having a problem with a service or whether the potential issue is more widespread. Once a user sends an issue report on Downdetector, that report is attributed to the location and country.
If a user in one country sends a report on the Downdetector website for another country, then the system will decides whether or not that service is monitored on the website associated with the user’s geolocated country. If it is, the issue report is attributed to the service for the user’s actual location.
If the service is not monitored in that country, the information is gathered and stored but not attributed as a report against the service for the other location.
The Final criteria for an Outage determination
Downdetector applies a harsh data methodology to decide whether a fair volume of the users is having a problem and then sets a status based on those issue indicators.
The isolated issue reports is not a likely indicator of an outage or other service problem. In this case, Downdetector only reports a problem if a significant number of the users are impacted.
Thus, Downdetector calculates a baseline volume of issue reports for each service monitored, depend on the average number of reports for that given time of day over the last year. The Downdetector’s incident detection system compares the current number of issue reports to this baseline and only reports a problem if the current volume exceeds the typical volume of reports significantly.
This is common for the users want to produce multiple reports once they are having issues, especially over an extended service interruption. To avoid a single user from skewing incident detection evaluations, Downdetector will only accepts a user’s first report for a specific company each day.
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The Service interruptions are frustrating and complicated. Downdetector gives a safe method for the users to check on a service’s status and see if they are facing a widespread problem and see what the community is saying regarding a service.
For the companies, Downdetector’s user-generated data offers a holistic view of what the users are reporting and decides the root cause of user-perceived outages. To get the real-time information on your services, simply you are able to visit your country’s Downdetector site or follow Downdetector on Facebook or Twitter.