It is no secret that Google bought YouTube from its makers, and since its acquisition, Google has transformed it into the biggest video-sharing platform and second biggest search engine.
YouTube is omnipresent, and we cannot see our lives without it. Whether you want a new recipe, a new gadget know-how, or want to listen to music, YouTube shows it all!
So, it is natural to feel frustrated when you eagerly reach your device to open your favorite platform, only to find it not working.
You cannot access YouTube, no matter how much you try. So, what are the reasons behind YouTube not working? Why its website or app is down?
These are the reasons why YouTube might be down:
1. Technical issues: hardware failure, software bugs, or other technical or security issues.
2. Software Update
4. Excessive traffic
5. Geographic Restrictions
6. Network issues
When an app or domain is down, users cannot access it. Like any other platform, YouTube also experiences downtime, but very rarely. Let’s understand the probable reasons behind them instead of panicking the next time it happens.
Reason #1: Technical Issues
It is the main reason that can cause YouTube downtime. When there is a technical issue with Google’s server or network, the YouTube app or website experiences an outage.
You can check whether the server is down from YouTube’s Twitter, Google News, and Down Detector.
If the YouTube platform is down, it could be due to hardware failure, software bugs, problems with data centers, or other technical problems that might require maintenance.
Moreover, unintentional accidental shutdowns or reboots due to human errors can also lead to outages.
Reason #2: Software Updates
This point is the extension of the above. Sometimes, software or infrastructure requires an update so that the platform can experience a temporary outage.
These updates can be to fix any bugs or security concerns or to optimize the performance. Moreover, the platform can also go offline for maintenance work to troubleshoot any issue.
In August 2022, Google’s various services like Google Search, Drive, Maps, and YouTube went down due to a software update.
Reason #3: Cyberattacks (DDoS)
Cybercriminals and hackers can also create planned outages affecting the performance of any server. YouTube is also not safe from these malicious activities.
These DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attacks overwhelm the server with fake traffic, slowing the platform down.
Like any other site, YouTube is also vulnerable to such attacks.
Due to fear of a security breach, platforms may go offline to tackle the situation, causing temporary outages.
Reason #4: Excessive Traffic
Excessive traffic or crowd overload can often affect the performance of YouTube and can lead to serious outage issues. This usually happens during major social, political, or cultural events, e.g., the US elections, the FIFA World Cup finale, or another major world event.
It can cause temporary outages, so the best you can do is wait it out to let the platform resolve the issues.
Reason #5: Geographic Restrictions
Due to political or legal reasons, YouTube is blocked in some countries. So, citizens of those countries cannot access YouTube (unless they use a VPN).
Countries where YouTube is blocked are China, Eritrea, Iran, North Korea, and Turkmenistan.
There can be a network restriction on YouTube, particularly if you try to access the platform at your school or work. You can talk to the network’s administrator to be sure of it.
Reason #6: Network Issues
You might be experiencing problems with YouTube because of your unstable or poor internet connection. So, if you are unable to access YouTube, it is wise to check your internet connection to rule this reason out.
Similarly, if there is a problem with Google’s networks or data centers, it can affect YouTube’s performance.
The first outage that Google experienced that affected its various services was in 2013. Since then, there have been 8 outages reported due to various disclosed and sometimes undisclosed issues affecting the performance of its many services, including YouTube.
What Can You Do if You Cannot Access YouTube?
If YouTube does not experience any outages and still does not work for you, you can troubleshoot and fix the problem through these tricks:
- Update the YouTube app or browser where you are trying to access YouTube. You can check for the updates on Google or App Stores.
- Update your phone.
- Close the app or your phone properly and restart it.
- Clear the app’s cache.
- Disable any extensions or plug-ins that might be preventing YouTube from functioning properly.
- Check your connection.
YouTube can be down for any reason directly related to it or its parent company, Google. It can be due to hardware failure, software bugs, maintenance work, or system updates.
Moreover, heavy traffic, whether due to major events or faked by cybercriminals, can also lead to outages. Lastly, YouTube can be banned in your country, preventing you from enjoying videos from all across the globe.
Whatever the reason is, you cannot do much when YouTube is down. So, wait for Google to resolve the issue itself.