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Computing a vast collection of newsgroups that follow agreed naming, maintaining, and distribution practices
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005


(computer science)
A global network of newsgroups that is linked by the Internet and other wide-area networks.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


/yoos'net/ or /yooz'net/ (Or "Usenet news", from "Users' Network") A distributed bulletin board system and the people who post and read articles thereon. Originally implemented in 1979 - 1980 by Steve Bellovin, Jim Ellis, Tom Truscott, and Steve Daniel at Duke University, and supported mainly by Unix machines, it swiftly grew to become international in scope and, before the advent of the World-Wide Web, probably the largest decentralised information utility in existence.

Usenet encompasses government agencies, universities, high schools, businesses of all sizes, and home computers of all descriptions. In the beginning, not all Usenet hosts were on the Internet. As of early 1993, it hosted over 1200 newsgroups ("groups" for short) and an average of 40 megabytes (the equivalent of several thousand paper pages) of new technical articles, news, discussion, chatter, and flamage every day. By November 1999, the number of groups had grown to over 37,000.

To join in you originally needed a news reader program but there are now several web gateways such as Deja. Several web browsers include news readers and URLs beginning "news:" refer to Usenet newsgroups.

Network News Transfer Protocol is a protocol used to transfer news articles between a news server and a news reader. The uucp protocol was sometimes used to transfer articles between servers, though this is probably rare now that most sites are on the Internet.

Stanford University runs a service to send news articles by electronic mail. Send electronic mail to <> with "help" in the message body.

Notes on news by Lars Magne Ingebrigtsen <>.

[Gene Spafford <>, "What is Usenet?", regular posting to news:news.announce.newusers].
This article is provided by FOLDOC - Free Online Dictionary of Computing (


(USEr NETwork) A public access network on the Internet that provides group discussions and group email. It is a giant, dispersed bulletin board that is maintained by volunteers who provide news and mail feeds to other nodes. All Usenet content is "NetNews," and a running collection of messages about a subject is a "newsgroup."

Humble Beginnings
Usenet began in 1979 as a bulletin board between two universities in North Carolina. Today, there are more than 50,000 newsgroups, and news can be read with a news-enabled Web browser, a newsreader application or via Unix-based utilities such as pine, tin and nn. See newsreader, newsgroup, NNTP and Google Groups.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Many, but by no means all, of the "alt" groups cover adults-only topics, giving the whole Usenet an undeservedly racy reputation.
These numbers demonstrate the shift in demographic participation within usenet. Distributions of domains are shown in Figure 4.
Given the surveillance possibilities, what-steps can a reporter take to reduce the likelihood that he or she will be ensnared by Usenet spies?
I taught my students to access the releases, read them on USENET, and save and print the files at the computer center on campus.
Today you can join CompuServe or Delphi and access its business forum/conference plus use its Internet link for e-mail and access to the Net's many business usenets. Today you could send Alan that e-mail message pointing out the error of his ways.
The Usenet discussion group soc.history "has been absolutely destroyed by Serdar Argic," Usenet moderator Joel Furr wrote in April on an internal news bulletin board.
The creation of Linux, Free Software, Educational journals, help and support on every imaginable topic, trading and advertising leads as well as News reports broadcasted worldwide by common people during Information Blackouts have benefited the world because of Usenet. The service track record in the past 20 years has been amazing.
Despite the fact that Americans and English speakers in general are disproportionately represented, participation is worldwide, which has led some over the years to suggest that Usenet can help people better understand one another and bridge differences between countries and cultures.
Community building on the Web often begins on listservs and Usenet news groups.
We've been trying to build a Usenet search capability that meshes with our world-class search capacity, and along with that, the ability to post."
Comes from Usenet chatlines, where, when this occurred, whoever mentioned the Nazis has lost the argument and the discussion automatically ends.
The Linux version of WebCheck is available on the comp.os.linux usenet group.