OT: The future of USENET?

grarpamp grarpamp at gmail.com
Wed Mar 27 18:12:08 UTC 2013


Usenet was great. 'Was' because it really isn't there anymore.
Servers used to be widespread, you could use your ISP, your school,
your work, and failing that plenty of free ones even if for the
asking, even some public/open ones. Now there are very few, if any,
free servers and likely none are public/open for obvious reasons.

Post 2000 Web 2.0 and those eyeballs destroyed usenet. They are the
idiot mass and they demanded to only see the world through their
browser window. And when usenet died off, so did the long running
text only archive servers, taking decades of human knowledge with
them. Vanished. Just the same as web forums do when they vanish.
Google's 'group' archive doesn't count, they're a corporation, they
wrapped it in web 2.0, they don't care, it will die.

The bandwidth cost, piracy and porn was just as damning as web 2.0.
The former caused the formal ISP/school/work support to die.
The latter stole the eyeballs.

Back then you had to have brains to be on the net, now everyone is
web 2.0, and they're satisfied with ridiculous web forums. Any
brains today are all but forced to use them because the population
is so slim anywhere else. Usenet has suffered its generational
penalty.

Usenet is still viable long term as a free/donation service, as is
irc, if operators do not carry the binary groups. Its new hope lies
with the opensource, hackerspace, anonymous, and related communities
of all sorts.

As a giant distributed mailing list, it's an awesome service that
these communities really should look at more closely.

Its future is up to you... will you run a server and list it as
a communication method (even primary) for your project, or not?
Will you donate a server to the public, or not?


FreeBSD related... it would be really nice if someone would shim
the FreeBSD forum to cause every post to be copied out to a set of
FreeBSD mailing lists. So the efficient/interested among us could
at least read, search and archive them without being forced to waste
time with the web interface.


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