Update (2 days later): SixApart’s CEO Barak Berkowitz provides more details. He posted his Message from the CEO to the TypePad blog and also sent it in an HTML email to customers:

Dear Debbie,  

As you might know, some of our users have been experiencing slow performance with the TypePad service over the past few weeks…

Pretty nice. To back up a minute… we (meaning a bunch of Business Blog Consulting contributors) are taking partial responsibility for these blogged responses from SixApart. We started complaining vociferously on Wednesday Oct. 26, 2005 (first me and then Tris Hussey, Rich Brooks, Toby Bloomberg and Paul Chaney) about the recent slowness and outages with TypePad, SixApart’s popular hosted blogging service.

The result? Last night, SixApart co-founders Mena and Ben Trott posted a reponse, the first real explanation we’ve gotten from the company after several weeks of problems with TypePad. The number of TypePad blogs and the activity on them (the good news) has outstripped their server capacity (the bad news), they tell us. They’re working to move TypePad to a new data center (which hasn’t been going smoothly).

Moral of the story? The blogosphere works. You kvetch enough. You get everybody’s attention. (Addendum: we’re quite pleased with the effect of our buzz campaign.) Now let’s  hope they can fix the problems.

I sent Anil Dash (a SixApart VP) several emails yesterday begging him to “listen up” and to make lemonade out of lemons, so to speak. Anil is a friend and colleague. I suggested he get the top dogs at 6A to acknowledge the recent problems and address them more transparently than the cryptic messages we get on 6A’s Status Weblog about “temporary service degradation.”

He listened.

Another takeaway… there are many channels of communication. You need to use a combination of public and private ones. The blogosphere is a very very public place. It’s not right for everything.