Stephen Fry - "I can take sites down with a single tweet"

Stephen Fry has revealed in an interview with .net magazine how he can take down sites by tweeting a link, as thousands of his 1.3 million followers follow the link and overload the servers, Neowin has learnt via TechRadar.

"When I tweet a link it usually gets around two or three thousand requests a second. Especially if I word it in a way where I really want people to go to a site," he said in the interview.

Fry went on to explain how he warns site owners prior to linking them so as to try and avoid taking their websites down. "I just have to be very specific, and say: 'Please go to your web guys and your host and tell them this is the kind of traffic you could get.

"Fifty per cent of the time the site is down in seconds – even when we've contacted site owners and they've told us everything will be fine. It's often an unprecedented amount of traffic, and they don't have the required capacity."

A huge fan of Twitter, Stephen Fry also talked about how people are only just beginning to realise the potential of the service as a way to not only advertise but as a way to campaign.

"Twitter's astonishingly new still, and its power is only just beginning to be discovered. Not just power to advertise, but power to campaign, power to – perhaps – change politics: not necessarily in a good way, not necessarily in a bad way. But it's power nevertheless.

"Wherever a lot of people are assembled, and are exchanging ideas quickly, there is always power. And people are only just beginning to learn how to use the API to its fullest potential."

You can watch the full interview on the .net magazine website at

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