WhatsApp messenger hit by temporary outage

Users in Malaysia and Singapore also complained of WhatsApp being down in those countries. (Reuters)
Updated 03 November 2017
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WhatsApp messenger hit by temporary outage

MUMBAI/SINGAPORE: Facebook’s WhatsApp messenger suffered a temporary outage in India and many other countries, according to reports from multiple users on Facebook and Twitter on Friday.
Users in countries ranging from Brazil and Russia to Vietnam and Myanmar reported on social media that WhatsApp was down in their countries. The extent of the outage and the reasons for it were not immediately known.
’Whatsappdown’ was the top trending item on Twitter in India, which is WhatsApp’s biggest market with about 200 million of its billion-plus users. It was also a top trending item on Twitter in Pakistan, Britain, Germany and many other countries.
Users reported WhatsApp, the world’s most popular messaging service, had begun to gradually function again about 30 minutes after initial complaints of an outage appeared on social media.
Users in Malaysia and Singapore also complained of WhatsApp being down in those countries.
A spokeswoman for Facebook in Singapore said the company was still investigating the matter.
Independent websites monitoring outages of popular social media services via online conversations and Twitter messages report regular outages for WhatsApp, often one every few weeks, but these are typically brief and confined to certain geographies.
WhatsApp has faced similar widespread outages this year, including for several hours in May.
WhatsApp is used by more than 1.2 billion people around the world and is a key tool for communications and commerce in may countries. The service was acquired by Facebook in 2014 for $19 billion.


PayPal move blocks sales of school shooting video game

"Active Shooter" is branded as a "SWAT simulator" that lets players choose between being an active shooter terrorizing a school or the SWAT team. (YouTube/AP)
Updated 20 June 2018
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PayPal move blocks sales of school shooting video game

  • Acid Software said Tuesday that purchases of "Active Shooter" were "temporarily disabled"
  • Acid recently set up two websites for "Active Shooter" after the game was removed from the webpages of video game marketplace Steam and crowdfunding site Indiegogo

HARTFORD, Conn: The developer of a school shooting video game condemned by parents of slain children has lost the ability to sell its products online after being dumped by PayPal.
Acid Software said Tuesday that purchases of "Active Shooter" were "temporarily disabled" as its representatives tried to resolve the issues with PayPal. Acid's postings on Twitter and an online bulletin board included the hashtags "QuitCensoringUs," ''FreedomOfExpression" and "WeWillBeBack."
PayPal confirmed it closed the account.
"PayPal has a longstanding, well-defined and consistently enforced Acceptable Use Policy, and regardless of the individual or organization in question, we work to ensure that our services are not used to accept payments for activities that promote violence," the company, based in San Jose, California, said in a statement Wednesday.
"Active Shooter" is branded as a "SWAT simulator" that lets players choose between being an active shooter terrorizing a school or the SWAT team responding to the shooting. Players can choose a gun, grenade or knife, and civilian and police death totals are shown on the screen. Acid was selling an early version of the game online for $20 and plans to release a new version early next month.
Acid recently set up two websites for "Active Shooter" after the game was removed from the webpages of video game marketplace Steam and crowdfunding site Indiegogo. The removals followed complaints and online petitions by anti-gun violence advocates including parents of children killed in school shootings in Parkland, Florida, where 17 students and staff died in February, and Newtown, Connecticut, where 26 children and staff died in 2012.
A company that hosted the new websites removed them last week after receiving similar complaints. But Acid got the sites back up and running by switching to Russian servers, said an Acid representative, Ata Berdyev, of Seattle.
"Active Shooter" was created by Anton Makarevskiy, a 21-year-old developer from Moscow, Russia, and is being marketed by his entity Acid Software. Berdyev is helping Makarevskiy promote the game.
Berdyev said Wednesday that the future of the game could now be in doubt.
"Seems like everyone in US trying to censor us, whilst not explaining what exactly we are violating," Berdyev said in a message to The Associated Press.