When Gmail Went Down, Yahoo Poked Fun On Twitter, Then Apologized

Gmail was down briefly today, and Yahoo — which suffered its own and much longer-lasting email woes recently — still decided it was a good opportunity to have some fun, tweeting about the failure then later apologizing.

Yahoo shared the news to its Twitter followers that “Gmail is temporarily unavailable,” with a picture of the Gmail error page, as shown above. The tweet has since been deleted.

Perhaps it might have been argued that Yahoo wasn’t meaning to poke fun at all but be informative. However, that seemed unlikely (and especially so given Yahoo’s apology). There was little reason for Yahoo to be telling its followers, which it hopes will use Yahoo Mail, about what was happening with Gmail.

The move seemed especially risky for Yahoo, since Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer apologized last month for Yahoo for Yahoo Mail woes that went on for days, for some of its Yahoo Mail users.

Some Thought It Funny

At the time we originally posted our story, Yahoo’s tweet had been retweeted over 1,500 times and favorited over 500. There were any number of “ah, snap” replies that seemed to find it in good humor:

Some Didn’t

But there were also plenty that didn’t, such as:





Gmail Stays Quiet On Twitter

Of course, Gmail had its own failure on Twitter. Despite so much commenting about Gmail going down, Gmail’s twitter account tweeted nothing in the hour or so when Gmail went down:

As Techmeme founder Gave Rivera joked, say anything:

Since we originally posted this story, however, the Gmail account has retweeted the Google twitter account saying that most services are now OK.

The Apology

We’ve updated our headline and our story above to reflect that Yahoo has now apologized over the tweet to Google and Gmail, saying it “reflected bad judgment” and that the tweet has been deleted:

Related Topics: Channel: Social Media Marketing | Google: Gmail | Top News | Yahoo: Mail


About The Author: is Founding Editor of Marketing Land. He’s a widely cited authority on search marketing and internet marketing issues, who has covered the space since 1996. Danny also serves as Chief Content Officer for Third Door Media, which publishes Search Engine Land and produces the SMX: Search Marketing Expo conference series. He has a personal blog called Daggle (and keeps his disclosures page there). He can be found on Facebook, Google + and microblogs on Twitter as @dannysullivan.

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  • http://www.rankinstyle.com/ Jacques Bouchard

    I have some sort of elite Yahoo mailbox, and I’m sticking with it. I abuse my unlimited storage capacity like whoa — many, many gigs have been stored in the past 16 years.

  • http://warrenwhitlock.com/social-media-expert Warren Whitlock

    a word or two different could have made it a friendly or funnier tweet. “we say gmail was down. feeling their pain”.. or the bolder “didn’t see a gmail tweet on this so we’re sharing”

    The backlash and viterol over which email service is better is silly rubbish. Let’s all stop looking at every tweet as a major policy announcement

  • Steve

    Don’t see what the big deal is… and why apologize??

  • http://www.adrianspeyer.com/ Adrian

    I agree. I don’t see the issue. Looks like a benign Tweet that became news on a slow day…

  • http://elrhaziotmane.blogspot.co.uk/ Otmane EL RHAZI

    Very funny. I like Gmail for me it is the best out there. I was surprised to see google+ down yesterday!

  • RanoFano

    lol, like Yahoo has never gone down. Gimme a break.
    Anon-VPN dot COm

  • http://martinbean.co.uk/ Martin Bean

    Only Yahoo could come out of Gmail going down worse than Google themselves.

  • apfwebs

    Well, the other side of the coin is that Google has always said, “The competition is just a click away.” ;) /sarcasm

  • 2eurocents

    A non-story to be sure. It’s okay though, you’re welcome to my click :p

  • http://www.metzener.com/ Dave Metzener

    I’m sorry, but I don’t see where Yahoo! is poking fun at Gmail. They stated a FACT that Gmail was down. No smiley face, no snide remark. Just a statement of fact and a screenshot to back it up.

  • IM Gibson

    Funny thing is Yahoo mail went down yesterday and has been down ever since. Interesting.

  • sunstroked

    Must suck to get fired for a tweet.

  • Jay Sinclair

    Yahoo mail is down right now, lmao

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