Usenet, worldwide computer network that encompasses thousands of discussion groups, called newsgroups, that allow the exchange of news, comments, and questions on specific topics. Usenet was created in 1979 by Duke University graduate students Jim Ellis and Tom Truscott. Most Usenet traffic now travels over the Internet. Usenet has no central management, but people who wish to establish new groups and people who post articles to Usenet groups are expected to observe certain procedures, and the content of some groups is filtered by a moderator, a person who checks messages.
Usenet newsgroups are arranged in a hierarchical structure- that is, they are named in a system of categories and subcategories, from least to most specific. For example, the newsgroup sci.physics.fusion is devoted to the discussion of nuclear fusion (Atom and Atomic Theory), but there are many other groups with the heading sci. and several other groups with the heading sci.physics. Some of the most common general headings are comp., for groups devoted to discussions of computer hardware, software, and other aspects of computer science; sci., for the discussion of topics in science; soc., for groups dealing with social and cultural issues; talk., for debate and discussion of issues; rec., for the discussion of recreational topics like musics, sports, games, and hobbies; and alt., for groups that are not moderated- that is, messages are not checked or filtered by anyone.
Usenet (y¡z' net) UseNet USENET noun
A worldwide network of UNIX systems that has a decentralized administration and is used as a bulletin board system by special-interest discussion groups. Usenet, which is considered part of the Internet (although Usenet predates it), is composed of thousands of newsgroups, each devoted to a particular topic. Users can post messages and read messages from others in these newsgroups in a manner similar to users on dial-in BBSs. Usenet was originally implemented using UUCP (UNIX-to-UNIX Copy) software and telephone connections; that method remains important, although more modern methods, such as NNTP and network connections, are more commonly used. BBS, newsgroup, newsreader, NNTP, UUCP.
denizen (den'i-zen) noun
A participant in a Usenet newsgroup.
IDM release _Alt.Frequencies.4_ compilation CD on Worm Interface #024 (2000)
Newsgroups of personal interest: