Kansas businesses that rely on Facebook, Instagram had few options when sites went offline

Kansas

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – After being offline for six hours Monday, Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp services were restored. The last time the social media network experienced such an outage was in 2008.

Thirteen years later, the outage proved to be a headache for average users and local businesses relying on the social media giant for marketing.

“I use WhatsApp pretty regularly, so it’s kind of made a dent in my day here,” said Billy Ramsey, Soteria Technology Solutions CEO.

Ramsey said businesses who rely solely on social media to stay afloat could be rethinking that strategy.

“People may look at this and say, ‘Hey, I need to have a backup plan. I need to actually have a website instead of just depending on Facebook to provide that for me.'”

The owner of Friducha Gift Shop uses social media instead of an official website to promote her business. She said the outage brought much of her plans to a grinding halt.

“So, we start usually on Tiktok because these are pretty nice videos, the ones you can share on Facebook and Instagram, so of course we can do nothing today,” said Gisela Pena, Friducha owner.

For many casual users of the technology giant, the outage created mixed emotions.

“Somebody mentioned that Facebook was down, and the whole world was probably healthier for it,” said Ramsay.

“Facebook is crafted in such a way to suck us in,” said Dr. Molly Allen, Wichita Psychology, LLC.

Allen said an intense fear of losing access to social media could be a sign of an addiction to online activities.

“I think that most of us feel deep down inside that it’s like there’s a lot more to life than just staring into this little screen,” she said.

Allen says it should just be used as a tool to check in with friends and loved ones.

“Saying, hey, how are you, I care about you, you know, look at a cat video, then say bye, I’ve got other things to do.”

If you’re hoping to cut back on your social media use, turn off notifications on your phone, limit yourself to a least one hour, and make sure that hour comes after anything else you have to get done for the day.

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