Tonight is Census night, on the first year that the majority of Australia is expected to complete the quadrennial count of our country’s population online. The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ servers were load-tested at 150 per cent of the expected usage levels, but despite that, a number of users are still having trouble loading the page.
According to the ABS, 16 million Australians — 65 per cent of the population, or over 6 million households — are expected to complete the Census entirely online. To do this, letters were sent to each Australian household with a unique twelve-digit code that allows a form to be completed online on the census.ABS.gov.au website. That website, at the moment, is not responding for some users as of 7:55PM tonight:
#MyCensus is crashing and people can't get. Gee, who could see that coming ?— Maddieee (@Maddie__Jenkins) August 9, 2016
Update: As of 8:35PM, the Census website is still unresponsive:
DownForEveryoneOrJustMe.com reports that the Census site is experiencing difficulties connecting to users.
Update: ABS has posted this update on Twitter acknowledging the outage:
The ABS & Census websites are currently experiencing an outage. We're working to restore the service. We will keep you updated. Thank you.— Census Australia (@ABSCensus) August 9, 2016
Contracts have revealed that ABS spent more than $114,000 on load testing for the online Census:
Update: That’s on top of a $325,000 charge for ‘licenses for Census load testing’, apparently. #CensusFail indeed.
Just a reminder: if you can’t fill your Census form out tonight, you won’t get fined. In fact, you have until September 23 to submit your household’s Census details, so we suggest you try it again tomorrow, later in the week, or even next month.
Update: As of 11:00PM, the ABS has said that the Census website will remain down until some time tomorrow morning.
ABS & Census website are unavailable. The service won't be restored tonight. We will update you in AM. We apologise for the inconvenience.— Census Australia (@ABSCensus) August 9, 2016
Time to give up, folks, and try again tomorrow. If you still want to.