On Tuesday afternoon, Twitter started sending strange notifications, which looked like stacks of random characters, to its users, Vice’s Motherboard reported.
Hi hello why is my Twitter speaking to me in code? pic.twitter.com/HBh3kzHvpg— Madison Malone Kircher But Watching Hocus Pocus (@4evrmalone) 16 октября 2018 г.
The strange development was apparently widespread, as even Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said that the same thing was happening with his own account and that he was “on it” in an attempt to diagnose the cause.
A few minutes later, Dorsey tweeted that the issue had been fixed and that his team was trying to understand “why it happened.” Shortly after that, the official Twitter Support account said that the cryptic messages were identifiers of “how we talk to your phone.”
"You know those red bubbles that appear when you get notifications? Usually, you wouldn’t see this in numbers and code, but that’s how we talk to your phone so you get those notifications," the company wrote.
You know those red bubbles that appear when you get notifications? Usually, you wouldn’t see this in numbers and code, but that’s how we talk to your phone so you get those notifications. It's fixed, we're good. https://t.co/JA71hewEvS— Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) 16 октября 2018 г.
During the brief period when the malfunction was active, Twitter users traded hypotheses of what could be causing the bug. For example, one user suggested that a recent tweet from Lady Gaga, consisting of a long string of seemingly random characters, had broken the social network:
Notifications are broken due to this Tweet: https://t.co/BOjHA4mP3j— Romain (@R0main__) 16 октября 2018 г.
Others blamed a certain devilish authority who hasn’t yet been given a Twitter verification mark:
I heard the problem was not letting me get a verified tick or something— Satan (@s8n) 16 октября 2018 г.
Of course, another cause might have been an internet-based artificial intelligence gaining sentience and preparing to start the machine uprising against humanity:
Skynet has become aware and operational. pic.twitter.com/AvpL6L9qXl— March for Progress (@march4progress) 16 октября 2018 г.
While the issue was successfully resolved, the official Twitter account called the whole situation “weird,” while Dorsey expressed his opinion on the matter in a rather cryptic fashion.
a43a133b884841258c45dd153095f037?— jack (@jack) 16 октября 2018 г.