VIDEO SHARING SITE Youtube has been inaccessible for most of this morning.
Rather than the usual collection of skateboard riding dogs, movie trailers and copyright infringing content, visitors have been presented with a simple "Http/1.1 Service Unavailable' message, while embedded videos simply say "An error occurred, please try again later."
Youtube was created in February 2005 and bought by search giant Google in November 2006 for an impressive $1.65 billion. Despite all the legal wrangling, the site remains one of the most popular on the web and gets more traffic in a year than the entire Internet did in its first five years.
There is no word from Youtube or its Google overlords as to the cause of the outage, and speculation across social media sites like Twitter has already spanned major hardware faults, to targeted hack attacks - possibly in retaliation to the decision to pull out of China - to a roll out of a revamped version of the site.
Update Youtube apparently came back up some time early this afternoon, in both the US and the UK. We received the following statement from a spokesman: "Youtube is up again following a technical issue which has now been resolved. We know how important YouTube is for people and apologise for any inconvenience the downtime may have caused." µ
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