Slashdot effect

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The Slashdot effect, a term coined in the early 2000s, refers to the temporary inaccessibility of a website due to a sudden influx of traffic following its mention on popular internet[1] platforms like Slashdot, Reddit, and Twitter. This surge often results in slower load times, overloaded servers, and potential downtime, posing a significant challenge to optimal web performance. The name derives from the tech news website Slashdot, notorious for triggering such traffic spikes due to its substantial influence on internet activity. Although less common today, the Slashdot effect emphasizes the critical need for website scalability and performance enhancement, particularly in today’s landscape of viral social media content. To mitigate the impact, strategies such as employing Content Delivery Networks, page mirroring, load balancing, and dynamic server scaling are recommended. As a subject of digital culture study, the Slashdot effect provides valuable insights into the technical consequences of sudden online popularity.

Terms definitions
1. internet. The Internet, a global network of interconnected computer systems, utilizes standardized communication protocols, predominantly TCP/IP, to connect devices across the globe. The term 'Internet' has its roots in the 1849 term 'internetted' and was later adopted by the US War Department in 1945. The inception of the Internet can be traced back to the 1960s when computer scientists developed time-sharing systems, which eventually led to the creation of ARPANET in 1969. The Internet operates autonomously, without any central control, and the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) manages its primary name spaces. It has revolutionized traditional communication methods and has seen an exponential growth, with the number of internet users growing by 20% to 50% every year. In 2019, more than half of the global population was using the Internet. The Internet protocol suite, comprising TCP/IP and four conceptual layers, directs internet packets to their intended destinations. Fundamental services such as email and Internet telephony function on the Internet. The World Wide Web, an extensive network of interconnected documents, serves as a crucial element of the Internet.
Slashdot effect (Wikipedia)

The Slashdot effect, also known as slashdotting, occurs when a popular website links to a smaller website, causing a massive increase in traffic. This overloads the smaller site, causing it to slow down or even temporarily become unavailable. Typically, less robust sites are unable to cope with the huge increase in traffic and become unavailable – common causes are lack of sufficient data bandwidth, servers that fail to cope with the high number of requests, and traffic quotas. Sites that are maintained on shared hosting services often fail when confronted with the Slashdot effect. This has the same effect as a denial-of-service attack, albeit accidentally. The name stems from the huge influx of web traffic which would result from the technology news site Slashdot linking to websites. The term flash crowd is a more generic term.

The original circumstances have changed, as flash crowds from Slashdot were reported in 2005 to be diminishing due to competition from similar sites, and the general adoption of elastically scalable cloud hosting platforms.

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