this is not the solution for your problem. i just want to add that i had the same issue and found some interesting things.
in my case, a tweaked slackware with a custom kernel, i could not get sound with gaim. everytime that gaim tried to send some sound output, everything freezes.
but, if you use a sound server - arts or esd - then this issue is gone.
i was interested in this thing for the scientific view.
i don't care about sounds in gaim at all. but it is interesting to see that problems.
i just thought that i should share that with you..