And in the spirit of holiday cheer, Xbox LIVE is presently experiencing technical difficulties, and has been all week! As of this typing, according to the Xbox Support page here, you may experience the following:
Users may experience issues performing transactions dependent on Windows Live ID availability including but not limited to Xbox 360 and Zune account creation, renewal, recovery, all DMP transactions, and logging into or creating Windows Live ID accounts. Users will experience intermittent issues including but not limited to: Tournaments, Storage Downloads, Gamer Tile, Statistics through Arbitration, Match Making, and Messaging. Additionally, Halo 3 and Call of Duty 4 users may experience issues joining matches or posting statistics. Customer Support may also experience issues referencing customer data. We are aware of the issue and are currently working to resolve it. We apologize for any inconvenience.Now, all services have problems from time to time, it happens and that's fine. When Halo 3 was released, Xbox LIVE was really bogged down with all the new people logging in and playing.
What makes this situation funny, however, is the official Status of Xbox LIVE listed right above the above problems. According to Xbox Support, Xbox LIVE is: Up and running
Priceless. Glad I only have a free Silver Membership. If I was a paying Gold Member, I'd be pissed.