I found another of Ralph's postings that I hadn't spotted before which states:
"If iChat is Open then Quit the app.
In the Applications/Utilities folder find and launch Activity Monitor.
WHen this has launched find the entry for IMAgent.
Highlight it and then use the red Quit Button top left and confirm with Force Quit.
IMAgent will restart straight away.
Now try iChat again."
I am now up and working just fine. IM Agent was the culprit.
Glad that you found a way to resolve this.
The little grey radiating symbol (A little like an RSS feed icon but grey) is the indication that the account is connected via Mobile Device. (I.e. if someone sends you a message and sees this symbol for you they will know they are sending to a phone).
That is not to say that either iChat is not updating the Server properly (technically signing in to any AIM able app other than the mobile Device should return first message status to the computer.).
Please, if posting Logs, do not post any Log info after the line "Binary Images for iChat"
iMac 2.5Ghz 5i 2011 (Lion 10.7.2)
G4/1GhzDual MDD (Leopard 10.5.8)
MacBookPro 2Gb (Snow Leopard 10.6.8)
Mac OS X (10.6.8),
"Limit the Logs to the Bits above Binary Images." No, Seriously