After Michael Jackson’s death last week searches on that topic increased dramatically at Google. Google mistook the millions of search queries for a distributed DoS attack.
As Google product manager R.J. Pittman said in a blog post:
“Search volume began to increase around 2:00pm, skyrocketed by 3:00pm, and stabilized by about 8:00pm. As you can see in Google Hot Trends, many of the fastest rising search queries from yesterday and today have been about Michael Jackson’s passing.”
Many people saw Google’s error page when looking for that topic:
Other websites were affected too: Twitter (micro-blogging platform) was forced to disable some of their features to keep the service up.