(USEr NETwork) A public access network on the Internet that provides group discussions and group e-mail. It is a giant, dispersed bulletin board that is maintained by volunteers who provide news and mail feeds to other nodes. All the content that travels over the Internet is called "NetNews," and a running collection of messages about a particular subject is called a "newsgroup."|
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, popular newsreader applications such as News Rover (www.newsrover.com) or via venerable Unix-based utilities such as pine, tin and nn. See newsreader, newsgroup and NNTP.