Have You Lost Internet Access?

Time Warner Cable customers are experiencing blackouts.

By Kevin RR Williams

TECHNOLOGY Last week I lost access to websites hosted in Southern California but I am not alone. A regional blackout extends from Santa Clarita on the North to Chula Vista on the South end of the state with improved access in the center from Huntington Beach to Temecula.

Though these represent large Time Warner Cable (TWC) blackouts, Dallas, Austin and San Antonio, Texas are also affected. Internet service just north of Cincinnati, Ohio has been interrupted. Raleigh, North Carolina and Brooklyn, New York are also hit hard. You can view live outage updates by clicking the map below but technical TWC support says it is a Domain Name Server (DNS) issue and offers no ETA for resolution.

Time Warner Cable USA Outages

What makes this crisis particularly troubling for site managers is that some people are able to view the pages while others are not. You observe a dramatic decrease in visitors when reviewing site analytics. If you're a blogger or run an online store, it is imperative to maintain contact with your site(s) to respond to visitor comments and process sales. So the downtime is not just limiting people from downloading cat photos, it is impacting business revenue. Someone should be compensating Internet customers for this inconvenience.

The problem can manifest itself by displaying an alert that indicates that the browser has lost connection to the server. After two days of being in the dark while contacting the Internet Service Provider, TWC, and no resolution from my hosting company (who could not see the issue), I relocated this site to a new server hosted in another state over the weekend. With an SSL certificate, multiple CGI scripts and a dozen domain aliases, ClinicalPosters.com was a challenge to migrate. It now appears to be nearly 100 percent functional. You will notice that time-limited sales in the online store expire 3 hours earlier than before. The same time difference may be noticed on date stamps for processed orders.

In addition to Internet service, 800,000 customers report outages in VoIP digital phone service. These disruptions are concurrent to the cable content dispute resulting in the termination of several key content providers. [2,3]

You might have better success by trying to access trouble pages from a smartphone or tablet that uses a different IP address or service provider than you desktop computer. If you experience any other issues with this site or are are undergoing limited blackouts in your area please let me know below or report the problem on the Down Detector website, which tracks more than just TWC. [1]

References
  1. Time Warner Cable Outages. downdetector.com ^
  2. Time Warner Cable threatens to pull dozens more channels. nydailynews.com ^
  3. Time Warner VoIP Outage Impacts 800,000. dslreports.com ^