Failures of public services generate a lot of publicity. Every EC2 blip generates too many blog posts, including this one, about how the cloud cannot be trusted to run business critical functions. It is a difficult debate to have because availability numbers for cloud services are easy to get (there are companies devoted to reporting this) but public numbers for internal deployments are rare. What is the typical uptime for a deployment of server software from the large providers of server software?
We could start by reporting uptime numbers for MySQL deployments. But there is a big problem here. Who is willing to report a lousy number?