Fading Usenet Newsgroups

Usenet Newsgroups have been great over the past almost twenty years for me. I am finding less and less good posting and always more and more spamming. I fear that we are witnessing the death-rattle of the terminally. The problem is not Usenet newsgroups. Thousands of them are thriving quite nicely today just as they have for decades. The problem is that people do not seem to use them as much as earlier and more spam coming to them.

I still find all the web-based forums to be too primitive. Too often the problems are both user interface and the content (too many forums and too few really good and active). No web-based forum holds a candle to real Usenet. If you only know Usenet through a web-based interface like Google Groups, then you don’t really know Usenet. All web-based forums are dramatically inferior to Usenet.

Likely many of us also use web-based forums for certain specialty topics, particularly forums that are chartered for the discussion of certain hardware and or software, etc. But the Usenet newsgroups continue to be orders of magnitude faster and more efficient than any web-based forum I have seen in 20 years.

Web-based forums are generally HORRID. I avoid them unless absolutely necessary. If you have never used a real Usenet newsreader client and a proper Usenet NNTP server, then you are in no position to judge what is happening to this or any other Usenet newsgroup.


  1. Tomi says:

    Usenet’s home shuts down today
    We’ve lost the news!

    “Duke University in North Carolina is where Usenet began, and today the institution is shutting down its Usenet server. The college cites “low usage and rising costs” for the decision.”

    “The first messages began flowing in 1980, after two Duke students Tom Truscott and Jim Ellis, developed the protocol, using UUCP as a transport and modems (two 300 baud auto-diallers) and telephone lines as the backbone.”

    “Many social aspects of online communication – from emoticons and slang acronyms such as LOL to flame wars – originated or were popularized on Usenet,” notes the college.

    Read also:

    The Evolution Of Usenet News: The Poor Man’s Arpanet

  2. Home Decor Accents says:

    This is a really good read for me, Must admit that you are one of the best bloggers I ever saw.Thanks for posting this informative article.

  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Copyright Demands Push Largest European Usenet Provider Permanently Offline


    “Dutch anti-piracy authority BREIN has caused the largest European usenet provider, News-Service.com, to immediately terminate its services as they felt they could not live up to the court order served earlier.”

    Major Usenet Provider Shuts Down Following Court Order

    News-Service.com, one of the leading Usenet providers with many prominent resellers, has terminated its services with immediate effect. The shutdown is the direct and unavoidable outcome of a two-year battle with Dutch anti-piracy outfit BREIN, which was eventually decided against the Usenet provider. News-Service announced that it will appeal the decision “out of principle” as it threatens the entire 30-year-old Usenet community.

    “For reasons of principle, News-Service.com will not accept the verdict and has lodged an appeal,” NSE announced.


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