Caterpillar Cone: The new Fail Whale for Twitter?

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Twitter has been having issues all day today (you know, just like the good old days). But right now, instead of the typical Fail Whale picture (shown when Twitter is down), there is a database maintenance message and a picture that I’ll describe as a caterpillar being yelled at by an ice cream cone.

Cute? Kind of. Lame? Kind of. Funny? Not really. Trippy? Hell yes. I’m scared, bring back the Fail Whale!

This downtime seems to be unplanned as (at press time) there is neither a post about it on the Twitter Status blog or the regular Twitter blog. Perhaps Jerry Yang leaving Yahoo brought it down, or maybe it was the awesome Google Voice Search app for the iPhone.

According to the message, Twitter thinks the service will be down for about an hour. Any longer and the natives will go restless and tomorrow we’ll have 200 posts about a new “Twitter-killer.”

You can find me on Twitter here along with fellow VentureBeat writers Eric Eldon, Dean Takahashi, Anthony Ha, Chris Morrison and Dan Kaplan. Oh, and we have a VentureBeat account (for our posts) as well.

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