See the announce.
Please don’t report bugs on your blog, we have bugzilla.gnome.org for that. Comments are disabled and I see no email address so I have to post on my blog to reply…
To reply to the problem: I don’t think it’s an Empathy bug, empathy gives UTF-8 messages to the Connection-Manager, if the protocol don’t want to send UTF-8 messages it’s up to the CM to change the format. So which CM and protocol were you using?
Edit: Ah, I just seen the bug is now in bugzilla too. Bug #503200. Sorry for the noise.