On the same day that new Comscore numbers came out indicating new traffic highs for YouTube, the site went down for six hours this morning in the first unplanned outage since launching in February of 2005. Though users were told that new features were in the works, press inquiries have confirmed that it was actually a database failure that took the site down. Periodic planned downtimes at night, US time, are common but today marked the first major service failure for the site.
The biggest question on the table has always been about YouTube’s business model; today’s outage makes you wonder whether the company will be able to scale. YouTube announced that it was serving more than 100 million videos per day as of last month.
Update: YouTube’s problems today are now all over the web, getting loads of mainstream media coverage. Comscore is getting huge press today too, since the traffic report came out on the same as the failure. Freak PR windfall for both companies, unless YouTube continues to have service problems that is.