Is Slack down? Global outage highlights need for communication redundancy for remote teams Liam ‘Akiba’ Wright · 2 mins ago · 2 min read
Outage awakens global workforce to remote communication vulnerabilities.
Cover art/illustration via CryptoSlate
On Oct. 6, the digital communication landscape was jolted awake by roughly a 15-minute global Slack outage. This brief interruption had a ripple effect on the remote working world.
Digital tools like Slack have become lifelines in our online work routine, especially for remote teams. Today’s short-lived outage highlighted a pivotal but often ignored fact: we must ensure communication redundancy for these digital tools; otherwise, we expose ourselves to systemic risks.
Users worldwide took to X, detailing the disruption this short outage caused in their regular workflows. Oddly, Slack’s status page remained unaffected, claiming a 100% uptime.
However, after it appeared that Slack services had been resumed around 10:10 AM GMT, Slack updated its status page to state that some users were experiencing outages beginning at 10:11 AM GMT.
CryptoSlate can confirm that as of press time, it appears services have been restored to many users. However, Slack’s status page suggests otherwise, saying, “Something’s not quite right.”
Remote vs. office working.
Contrast this with a traditional office scenario. If the office internet acted up for 15 minutes, it would be disruptive, but the fallout would be less dramatic. Proximity allows for immediate in-person interaction, prompt fixes, or even a short break – luxuries not always available to remote workers.
Those who champion a return to office work will claim that this Slack hiccup paints a bigger picture. Digital tools, beneficial as they are, can become failure points in a hyper-connected work setup. Remote work enables flexibility and accessibility but also ties us down to the flawless operation of a handful of platforms.
What to do if Slack goes down
However, as previously stated, redundancy in communication tools is vital for any remote team, and today’s outage is simply a warning shot to those without such processes in place. Ensuring a simple process of ‘What to do if Slack goes down?’ counters any argument that a total return to the office is needed to avoid the potential for these issues.
Setting up an internal set of Telegram Groups, including a company-wide group, is a simple prophylactic against company-wide communications disruption. In the old days, we’d all be able to phone each other. Yet, as a millennial, who wants to talk on the phone?
The goal isn’t to abandon digital tools or remote work; both have demonstrated their value, especially post-pandemic. The real challenge lies in crafting robust contingency plans and cultivating a culture of digital resilience.
Today’s outage was a wake-up call to many, highlighting our deep-seated reliance on digital tools. It wasn’t a disaster, but it underscored an important point about our current work practices. As we traverse remote work’s promising but novel terrain, we must stay alert to potential pitfalls and prepare ourselves for unforeseen obstacles.
As of press time, Slack’s status page suggests an ongoing incident. Please check the status page to confirm if this is still the case.