At approximately 10:20 PM Voat time on 18 April 2018, Voat displayed a 503 error every time one tried to access it.
Approximately 3 hours ago, at 6:20 AM Voat time on 21 April 2018, Voat came back online.
As far as I am aware this marks the longest outage in post-Whoaverse history. /u/Atko says that, whatever the issue was, he isolated it and "did what [he] could to bring the services back online". He has not yet said what the issue was or what had to be done to bring us back.
Before I get into the rest, I want to comment on the fact that the Voat Canary was not updated with /u/Atko's announcement. Voat's Canary was set up to be updated everytime an admin made a post to /v/announcements -- not every however-so-many days. I want to state now that I do not think the fact that the Voat Canary was not updated is a sign of anything whatsoever. I do not think its lack of an update is meaningful because I do not think /u/Atko is any longer in a position to update the Canary with honesty. Sure, he probably still has access to the firstname.lastname@example.org address, but when he stepped down as CEO and passed that position to Putt, I believe he detached himself in all official capacity from Voat. I may be wrong in this, but even if I am not it is very possible that /u/Atko simply does not feel comfortable updating something where he might not have access to all of the information necessary to update it accurately.
On to (what is for me) an even more important matter -- and the Canary is important. We also still do not know where Putt is. In the announcement, /u/Atko said:
I am still a bit worried as I haven't heard anything from Putt, but I hope that he's just enjoying a few days off somewhere nice and quiet.
I hope beyond all hope that Putt is alright. Despite his absence for these past three days with respect to getting Voat back online, I feel the need to point out that previous to now he had not commented for 16 days, or submitted anything for around 40 days, and if we ignore his last two (possibly quickly typed out on mobile) comments, he hasn't commented for 35 or so days. Putt has been away and/or silent for weeks at a time before, but I am only aware of one or two other instances of him being silent for a month or more, so this is not the most common thing. To me, these longer silences suggest Putt taking time off from Voat.
As /u/Atko reminded us, and by now we should all know, Putt has a full-time job on the side of Voat, and some of you who are less involved with the preview site (when it isn't acting as our safe haven) might not realize how much work goes into keeping Voat running. It's not just a matter of fixing the bugs that are found; there is also development on the side, as well as managing donations (when they are incoming), administration (announcements etc.) and everything else that cannot be thoroughly impressed upon here.
The point is, we do not necessarily have reason to believe that harm has come to our Putt, just because the services went down. If /u/Atko was able to revive Voat, I do not see how Voat's downtime can be connected to Putt getting hurt and Voat getting forcibly taken down. Hopefully /u/Atko will let us know, in whatever minute details he can, exactly what happened to the services.
EDIT: Here is /u/Atko on the preview making a submission in which he says that he thinks he can bring Voat back. With an edit a few minutes after the initial submission he claims 99% certainty with respect to identification of the issue and says the fix will take half an hour. In less time than that, it seems, Voat was back online.
Some /u/Atko comments from that thread:
I'm looking like an idiot with this grin right now xD (might have been in reference to a bear pic, or his own realization that he had things figured out)
I got this. Hold my beer.
So we should all hope and pray for Putt, in all our material and spiritual capacities, and furthermore we should thank /u/Atko for bringing his happy little playpen back to life.
As for where goats ran off to while Voat was down -- the main options were our beloved preview site and 8chan. Both were there for us when goats needed them most. There is much to discuss going forward but now we should be happy and thankful that Voat is returned to us, and hopeful with respect to Putt's safety.
As always, stay vigilant, goats -- perhaps now more than ever.
Thanks to the mighty Shadow Lurker for his solution to this trauma!