Is the Customer Always Right? Not at Internap

Data center providers are usually loathe to get in public disputes with customers, as it has a way of converting  them into former customers. There’s been a doozy of a public spat this week involving dueling finger-pointing between Internap Network Services (INAP) and Ooma Inc. At issue is a network outage on Monday that disrupted service for Ooma’s VoIP customers and prompted an unflattering writeup on TechCrunch,

Ooma chief marketing officer Rich Buchanan used his Twitter feed to blame Internap for the problems.”Ooma issues were linked to an outage at Internap, Buchanan wrote. “It also affected RIM, Google, Yahoo, Blue Cross, TM, Verizon, and others.”

When media reports began citing Internap, company spokeswoman Debra Forrester denied that Internap had any downtime, telling Betanews and the Business Times that the problems must be on Ooma’s network.

Ooma’s Buchanan shot back: “We have the network logs to show that their service was not performing to specification, and that subsequently caused our network outage,” he told the Business Times. “It’s unfortunate that a network provider with the reputation that Internap has would stoop to such levels to avoid responsibility.”

Before long, Internap was calling back those same media outlets to backpedal, saying the outage was still under investigation. ““We will either find out it was indeed our problem, or they will find out it was them,” Forrester said.

Internap retracts false statement about ooma service outage,” Buchanan Tweeted shortly afterward. “Cheap shot Internap.”

For what it’s worth, there are multiple reports that Ooma experienced more downtime this morning.

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About the Author

Rich Miller is the founder and editor at large of Data Center Knowledge, and has been reporting on the data center sector since 2000. He has tracked the growing impact of high-density computing on the power and cooling of data centers, and the resulting push for improved energy efficiency in these facilities.

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  1. nottlv

    To my knowledge companies like Google, Yahoo & Verizon don't purchase transit from Internap (and a looking glass and AS route search shows that), so how could they also be affected by an Internap network issue? Maybe those companies have a presence in that same Equinix facility (looks like Equinix Sunnyvale), but it doesn't mean they're customers of Internap. And why is the CMO talking about this while sunning himself in Mexico and not the CTO?

  2. Mitch

    @nottlv I suppose if you throw in the names of some big brands it serves to make internap look stupid and I dare say a good proportion of the people reading the blog don't have a clue about the technicalities but it might be enough to dissuade them from buying services from internap, thus damaging their brand and wringing out some compensation in the process.