Back in the day, an email outage at Hotmail/MSN/Outlook.com would have been a big deal. But I'm not sure it's such a big deal these days. However, Outlook is in the throes of an outage that was first reported this morning on Aussie Outages. I'm not sure too many Lifehacker readers will still be running their Hotmail accounts - maybe you've kept one for the odd MySpace request you get - but the outage seems to be localised to Australian and Japanese customers.
Given the amount of trust we put in cloud services, this outage is a good reminder of why we shouldn't put all our trust in someone else's computers and networks. To be fair, pretty much every large cloud service suffers an outage. AWS had issues last year and Gmail has dropped like a stone as well. So these sorts of outages aren't unknown
Some users have reported that logging out and back in resolves the problem. The most recent data from Aussie Outages suggests the severity of the issue is reducing but whether that's because the issue is being resolved or people have stopped logging problems is a different question.
None of my local Microsoft contacts are answering their phones at the moment but tracking the status at Aussie Outages will help you keep tabs on what's going on.