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Can Office Communicator communicate with MSN Messenger?

I'm using Office Communicator and would like to communicate with someon on MSN/Windows Messenger that is outside of our organization.  Communicator finds this person by email address only with a status of unknown.  When I send a message, I get the error that the message can't be sent and the person appears offline.  Are these two programs not compatible?
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Yes - they are, but your network may not be configured to handle it. Do you know if you've been able to communicate with outside sources before?

Specifcially from the website I posted: "Note  If you have trouble connecting with users of MSN, AOL, or Yahoo!, contact your system administrator to verify that your network is configured for public IM connectivity."

Many (if not most) private networks switch off the ports at the firewall needed for public IM to communicate.  Good luck!
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