Surge in Herdict Reporting from Vietnam

Herd:

Help us solve a mystery!

As a crowdsourced project, we like when we get reports about websites that are up or down.  And we love when we get a lot of reports!  But we also keep a weather eye out for unusual reporting patterns that might indicate spam or an effort to skew our data.

Starting on December 18th, we noticed one such unusual event–a huge spike in reporting from Vietnam.  Over a several week period, we received thousands of reports (both accessible and not), with a peak single-day total of 798 on December 27th.  As fast as the peak began, it just as quickly seemed to end after January 8th.  A screen capture from our Time Graph shows the trend below:

Despite indicators that the reports may be spam (only a handful of IP addresses, contributing a large volume of reports with manual edits to the ISP), as best as we can tell, this is not the result of spamming.  These reports covered a wide variety of sites, appeared to provide legitimate reports, and occasionally offered helpful comments regarding the sites being reported.  For those reasons, we believe that the reports are genuine (although perhaps done with some automated assistance).

We wanted to put the question to the Herd.  Any other theories on the spike?  Is it related to Mark Zuckerberg’s visit to Vietnam?  Leave a message in the comments or contact us at  contact at herdict.org.  More data is available on the recent raw-data feed on Vietnam from the time frame covering the spike.

In any event, we’d love to see more data like this–keep the reports coming!

-Herdict Team

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