People were consumed with nerd-rage when they couldn’t fill out their census forms
A few years ago, Stephen Harper considered the mandatory long-form census to be so politically toxic that he killed it altogether, to the dismay of statisticians across the country. Now, Harper is (mostly) gone, the mandatory census is back, and people are pissed—pissed!—that Statistics Canada’s crappy website briefly prevented them from filling it out last night.
It seems as though Statistics Canada sent out a large number of census mailers all at once, each containing instructions for accessing an online survey form, hosted on the StatCan website. Yesterday, when the mailers started showing up at people’s homes, many of the recipients tried, simultaneously, to access the website. StatCan says the deluge of traffic (which the federal government’s IT people should probably have anticipated and prepared for) knocked the site offline for a few hours yesterday evening. Curiously, the site’s error message said it was undergoing “scheduled maintenance,” which appears not to have been the truth.
It’s possible that some census-hating Canadians took grim satisfaction in the government snafu. On Twitter, though, where users love nothing better than typing their personal information into boxes on websites, the reaction was pure nerd-rage. Here are 15 people who just couldn’t wait to fill out a mandatory government form:
— josh (@hallam720) May 3, 2016
Hey @JustinTrudeau I love having the long-form census back. Hard to put up with the crappy website though.
Because it's 2016.
— Nathan Maharaj (@nrmaharaj) May 3, 2016
LOL Canada is so happy to have the census back, we crashed the website on Day One? That's ok, I'll wait. #cdnpoli
— Nancy Bennett (@Nancy178) May 3, 2016
Just as I was in middle of filling in the census questionnaire, their website goes maintenance. ?
— Sam Walters (@SamuelGWalters) May 3, 2016
-When should we schedule in maintenance for the website?
-When do people get their census forms?
-Let's do it May 2 then
— Paul Fairie (@paulisci) May 3, 2016
I feel left out. I didn't get my census info so I can't complain about the website being down
— Michael Oram (@Michael_Oram) May 3, 2016
Managed to get into the census website and complete it. But I didn't even get to tell the government how many bathrooms I have!
— Kate M. Daley (@thedaleykate) May 3, 2016
Geez, @StatCan_eng. Sit down to do the census online with my son and the website is down for "scheduled maintenance."
— Thomas McIlwraith (@tadmcilwraith) May 3, 2016
Went to fill out my census and the website was down for maintenance! Will I still get arrested? @StatCan_eng
— Phil_Menger (@Phil_Menger) May 3, 2016
Two disappointments this evening: only received the short form census, and now the #Census2016 website is down. But I'm eagerrrrrrrr!
— Brianna Hammer (@briannahammer) May 3, 2016
— John Williams (@northrange1) May 3, 2016
Setting my alarm for 4am and hoping the census website is back up and running again by then. #nerd
— Mary Domachado (@Ginger_zing) May 3, 2016
"Complete the census in 8 days! It's The Law! Also our website can't handle that kind of traffic so…" – Cdn Gov't pic.twitter.com/mZg1yr5XdN
— Krees (@cganders) May 3, 2016
It would be easier to fill out the census if the website wasn't moving at 0kmph. #Census2016
— Alexandra (@alexandrachael) May 2, 2016
Totally happy to fill out the census but kinda wish the Federal Gov't wasn't terminally inept at everything and the website was working.
— PatrickdeSousaLahey (@PdeSousaLahey) May 2, 2016
This morning, after census-crazed Canadians had spent a sleepless night worrying, StatCan tweeted the all-clear:
Thanks Canadians for responding in such high numbers. The site was overwhelmed by the enthusiasm, but we are back! https://t.co/SnxAmqTRSr
— Statistics Canada (@StatCan_eng) May 3, 2016