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"I keep getting the 'stream is offline' video even though it is listed on the Live Cams page."

If the stream you are trying to watch flicks to the 'offline' video immediately:
Since we removed concurrent viewer and bandwidth limits for individual streams in March 2012, this problem should occur far less frequently. It used to be that if a broadcaster had reached their limits, the 'offline' video would show straight away. Now if you're seeing the same thing it could be one of two things:

The first is that the broadcaster isn't broadcasting properly and that their encoder isn't sending out the stream correctly, or indeed they are actually not broadcasting at all, so you should try again later when they may have cleared up the issue.

The second is that the broadcaster hasn't yet configured their router or firewall to allow their streaming out. There is a guide here for them to resolve this issue.

If the stream says 'Buffering 0%' for a long time, then switches to the 'offline' video:
You will encounter this problem if the broadcaster is running their encoder but haven't pressed the 'Start Encoding' button yet. This can also happen if the encoder has encountered an error while crunching the stream, because the encoder will still be allowing a connection to be made. You will just have to wait and see if the broadcaster corrects the issue!