Amazon.com's main web site experienced downtime this afternoon, with the company saying it is "investigating an issue that has impacted the availability of the Amazon.com website. Engineers are actively engaged in resolving this issue and we will provide an update once the issue is resolved." Other requests are returning "We're sorry! An error occurred when we tried to process your request." As of 3:50 p.m. Eastern, the site appears to be back up. Here's the official update from Amazon:
The Amazon retail site was down for approximately 2 hours earlier today (beginning around 10:25) - and we're bringing the site back up. Amazon's systems are very complex and on rare occasions, despite our best efforts, they may experience problems. We work to minimize any disruption and to get the site back as quickly as possible. Amazon's web services were not affected nor were our international sites.
While many bloggers are experiencing surprise about the downtime, Amazon has had outages before, including downtime in August 2006, July 2005 and December 2004. CNet reports that based on last quarter's revenue of $4.13 billion, a full-scale global outage would cost Amazon more than $31,000 per minute on average.