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Microsoft's Hotmail is down in the Northeast. Other Microsoft websites are sporadically reachable but extremely slow for many users. I'm located in Boston and cannot connect to Hotmail or The MSN network status page for Hotmail claims there are no network issues at this time, but that's clearly incorrect. This is the second major service outage this week, following Pakistan's takedown of YouTube over the weekend. Is Hotmail down for you? Let us know in the comments. A Microsoft's flack's PR-speak comment is below.

We are aware that some customers may be experiencing difficulty accessing their Windows Live accounts. We're actively investigating the cause and are working to take the appropriate steps to remedy the situation as rapidly as possible. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience and disruption this may be causing our customers.

Translation? "I don't know what's going on" has become "I don't know, and neither does Microsoft."