Deborah D. McAdams /
02.04.2014 07:23 PM
The Gmail Fail of 2014

EVERYWHERE—This happened. Gmail went down for something like 10 minutes. I’ve been using Gmail since I can’t remember when. There are 13,879 emails saved in my account. Gmail has become the de facto searchable archive of my correspondence—and what essentially are my conversations— with colleagues, experts, friends and businesses. And by the looks of Twitter, I’m not alone.

I jumped in and tweeted “Gmail fail” wondering how widespread it was. It was widespread. At least 50 or so “gmail” tweets were being posted every 10–15 seconds. Probably more. There was a sudden shared atmosphere of addicts with nowhere else to turn, and it was noted with the world-weary irony normally reserved for journalists:

“Gmail falters. Tech world freaks.”

“Apparently Gmail has been down this afternoon, which explains why I haven’t answered the email you sent me three weeks ago.”

“So wait, are there any members of the free world who don’t have Gmail accounts these days?”

“CAMERA 1: Two people at desks. They rise, look at each other. ‘Much… talking.’ ‘Yes. So wow.’ ‘We rebuild.’ They hold hands. /scene.”

It goes on, presumably for a full 18 minutes in some areas. Long enough for Yahoo! to get in the Twitter feed and poke Google in the eye and run.

I both love and hate Google. It knows more about me than I do, and it’s given that information to people who used it to impel my elucidation about restraining orders. It wants to force me to use Google+, which I suppose they can do. It’s their platform, but still. Give me a finished product and established terms of use, please. Stop making a test monkey out of me.

Then again, I guess that pretty much sums up Google’s terms of use; that any minute, I could be locked out of a database containing years of correspondence.

Hopefully, the NSA can retrieve it for me.



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