The term fail whale has generalized to mean "large-scale failure" (or in the current parlance, "epic fail"). For example, The Huffington Post used the term fail whale in an article headline that recounts various financial setbacks and failures.
The fail whale spawned a new way to present error information, and there is now an entire collection of fail pets. Wikipedia lists the fail pets for a variety of additional websites:
- Tumblr: Tumbeasts (created by Matthew Inman of The Oatmeal)
- Neatorama: Neatokraken
- Ars Technica: Moonshark. (Sometimes two words: Moon Shark)
- Github: Octocat
- Google: Broken robot