VoIP and instant messaging service Skype has disappeared from the Internet, nary a fortnight after Microsoft snaffled up the outfit in an overpriced $8.5 billion deal.
I confess to having run Internet publications using Skype as an instant messaging service for over seven years now.
In all that time the service has never once failed - until today. Occasionally when borrowing a machine that uses some sort of VPN we had to resort to other services and once tried Microsoft Messenger. For one-on-one conversations Messenger might be OK, but for collaborative group work it stinks. We came flooding back to Skype.
But now the service has given up the ghost, sending me into an infinite loop as non-functionality on two machines, one running that old dog Vista and one running funky new-fangled WIndows 7.
Trying to reinstall the application turned out to be a non-starter as www.skype.com is unavailable at the time of writing.
It didn't take Microsoft long to bugger that up, did it?
We're not the only ones pointing the finger in Redmond's direction, however, Twitter is a light with angry Skypers unable to get online. Here's a small selection of the chatter:
"Looks like the Skype network has crashed. Figures it would only be a matter of time, after Microsoft bought it."
"Microsoft buys Skype -> Skype receives one program update -> Skype starts crashing unexpectedly and at random. Coincidence?"
"RT: #skype, I freakin' hate you!!! you're interrupting my work. please come back!!! #microsoft, I hate you too. it's all your fault!"
"It hasn't been a month since Microsoft acquired Skype and it has started crashing already."
As far as an official response from Skype is concerned, their Twitter feed says: "Some of you may have problems signing in to Skype and making calls. We’re investigating and hope to have more details to share soon."
We'll keep you posted.
Skype's servers spluttered into life long enough to say it's borked. Here's the missive: