Last week Level3 had an outage that was at the root level, disrupting all types of Internet traffic and putting some customers, like AOL, off the hook for 20 minutes or so.
While their SLA's require them to provide an answer, the real explanation has yet to surface beyond some comments about an edge router. My call to their usually very responsive PR folks yesterday went unreturned. That's a sure sign that spindoctoring is at work.
Rule number one in crisis management is to be candid, especially with the press. Sadly this seems to not be the case here.