LivingSocial back online after Web site outage


LivingSocial’s Web site is down for the second straight day. (Screen shot of LivingSocial’s Web ite)
November 14, 2013

UPDATE: LivingSocial is back online Thursday morning after engineers spent the better part of two days working to fix an unspecified internal error that brought down the deal company’s Web site and mobile app.

The outage began Nov. 12 around noon. During the technical snafu, customers were unable to access LivingSocial.com to purchase deals and the firm temporarily halted its marketing e-mails. That will undoubtedly mean lost revenue and Web traffic for a company that has struggled to maintain both.

“Suffice to say, we are ashamed and embarrassed,” LivingSocial posted on its blog around 8 p.m. yesterday. The same post said the site would be live again sometime overnight.

The firm announced its return in a blog post this morning, adding “We are here to help every LivingSocial customer and merchant resolve outstanding issues. We will make this up to you.”

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A sitewide outage at District-based deals purveyor LivingSocial continued into a second day Wednesday as the company’s engineers work to fix an internal error that has rendered its Web site and mobile app inaccessible.

The site went down around noon Tuesday and was still out of order almost 24 hours later. A spokeswoman said there is no indication the outage was caused by external factors, such as a cyber attack, or that customer and merchant information was compromised.

“We were alerted immediately to the outage and have had teams working non-stop to resolve the issue. We have isolated the problem and will have the site up and running again as soon as possible,” LivingSocial wrote on its blog.

LivingSocial is unable to sell any deals while the issues continue, meaning each passing hour results in lost revenue. A spokeswoman said it was too soon to determine what financial toll the technical issues might have on the company.

The outage also means customers were unable to log into their accounts via the company’s Web site or mobile app. LivingSocial suggests those trying to access previously purchased vouchers search for them in their e-mail inbox.

LivingSocial suffered a cyber attack in April that forced 50 million subscribers to change their account passwords. That resulted in a double digit drop in sales and executives said it derailed the company’s efforts to become profitable.

Follow Steven Overly on Twitter: @StevenOverly

Steven Overly covers the business of technology, biotechnology and venture capital in the Washington region for The Washington Post and its weekly Capital Business publication. In that capacity, he has written about start-up struggles, investment trends and major drug discoveries.
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