The Scoop on Newsgroup: The Internet Is More Than the World Wide Web
Muhammad, Tariq K., Black Enterprise
Ever heard of Usenet? If you're like many newly initiated "Netizens," probably not. However, each time you surf the Web, you're only a mouse click away from one of the most productive parts of the Internet -- Usenet newsgroups. The Usenet is an electronic bulletin board system through which newsgroups are transmitted. Newsgroups are an important part of communication on the Internet, allowing surfers to interact with people throughout the world who share their interests. Users can post a message on a bulletin board to which newsgroup participants can respond in kind, or send an e-mail message directly to the author.
To read a newsgroup, you will need a news reader, but most browsers and/or online services now have them built-in to their offerings. Users subscribe to newsgroups of interest and will receive the posts of all other newsgroup participants. There are over 20,000 newsgroups on nearly every imaginable topic. Information on computer problems, politics, religion and everything in between, can be found in one or more newsgroups. They can be used for work, education or pleasure.
Newsgroups are organized in categories called hierarchies, in which each level is separated by a period. These levels become more specific after each period. For example, "soc.culture.african.american" is a social newsgroup with an interest in African American cultural issues. …