Its an unfortunate state of affairs these days that online servers often go offline, Its an even worse state of todays affairs that the reason for these server downtimes are often caused because of malicious attacks mostly DDoS attacks which are becoming more and more common. There is little more frustrating as a gamer than getting all setup ready for an evenings gaming only to find you cant access your favorite service.
In light of this Sony has setup a new server update webpage to allow its users to find out which parts of its service may be experiencing issues. There was an old page for this but it was rarely updated and many users would take to Twitter or Facebook to find out if the service was experiencing problems as this media was more regularly updated. We hope now though that the new page which can be found here (US site currently) will keep us up to date on the latest outages so we know if connection issues are on our end or theirs.
You will also notice that the status updates are split into all of the different sections of the Playstation Network, such as the Playstation store, online and social, account management and more.