Is Usnet Dying?

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I read someone's comment the other day about how their ISP claimed that "no one uses newsgroups anymore."
My own ISP has made the same comment to me when I've called to complain about inadequate Newsgroup service. They seem to feel that their customer base uses Usenet in only a marginal fashion. They act as though they couldn't be bothered.
This newsgroup, in particular, seems to be vibrant and well subscribed. The chess newgroups that I lurk on seem to be in the same condition.
When I look at the Netscan statistics, I see signs that there are many active groups.
Why this attitude by the ISP's?
I use two newsgroup providers, TeraNews being my backup, because my ISP's provider is often out of whack. TeraNews is fine for a backup but is often down.
However, I've had complaints from some that they don't see my posts when they come through my ISP's provider (Voicenet, I believe) because their system does not pick up the posts.
I've tried reading the group through Google but it seems to have a lot of lag time between the time that posts are made and when they show up on Google.
What is going on with this Usenet thing? Are the ISP's right in claiming that Usenet is dying? And, given that the ISP's don't care, what is the most reliable way to read and post on Usenet?
Regards, Tom Thomas J. Watson-Cabinetmaker Gulph Mills, Pennsylvania http://users.snip.net/~tjwatson
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Tom, I read it many times a day so I am a frequent user also. I have noticed that MNAY other groups are basically dead. Maybe the victims of too much spam, too much hate, too many ????
On Sat, 22 Nov 2003 21:26:57 GMT, Tom Watson

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Tom Watson wrote:

<snip>
My next door neighbor works "network tech support" (internal to the company) for Adelphia Cable. Prior to me showing him what "UseNet" was, he didn't even know it existed. I suspect it is the same with many of the "kids" working for various ISP's.
-- Jack Novak Buffalo, NY - USA (Remove "SPAM" from email address to reply)
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Boy, does that sound familiar. I have used 5 or 6 ISP's in as many years, and I have frequently had to tell customer support what USENET was. The better ISP's use more than one news feed, which helps with the missing posts problem. I have frequently complained about Earthlink newsgroup service, but in all fairness I have seen a dramatic improvement since they implemented new servers and split their subscriber base into two groups, East and West. Message retention seems to be longer, as well.
I do believe that the number of ISP subscribers which use USENET is low, probably less than 5%, maybe even less.
--
Ken Vaughn
Visit My Workshop: http://home.earthlink.net/~kvaughn65 /
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wrote:

For most ISPs it is FAR less than 5% and declining. At it's peak Usenet use never reached more than 10% since the arrival of the 'Internet'.
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The vast majority of people that I talk to have never heard of Usenet.

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usenet. Most all have internet, they just have not discovered usenet. Greg
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snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net says...

his computer and hook up to a local ISP. When I asked the ISP about newsgroups, he said that indeed he provided Usenet, but he never told any customers about it unless they knew enough to ask him!
--
Where ARE those Iraqi WMDs?

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wrote:

More to the point, it's true of the vast majority of Internet users today. So as far as the ISPs are concerned, Usenet is not something that very many subscribers care about, and not something that's worth putting much time or money into.
My ISP has a pretty crappy news server. Often down, slow, lots of missing messages, minuscule retention times. There are a couple of on-line forums where the ISP has an official or at least semi-official presence and when users complain about the news service, their response is that they're tryin' but realistically, there's only so much priority that they can give to a service that's used by perhaps 5-10% of their subscribers.
-- jc Published e-mail address is strictly for spam collection. If e-mailing me, please use jc631 at optonline dot net
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wrote:

Then why use it? There are terrific free servers out there with long retention and almost never down' I can point you to a terrific one in Germany if you want an excellent free news server.

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On Sun, 23 Nov 2003 10:18:22 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@here.now wrote:

Please do. -- jc Published e-mail address is strictly for spam collection. If e-mailing me, please use jc631 at optonline dot net
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http://news.individual.net /
binaries http://www.readfreenews.net/biggulp-faq.html
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wrote:

I'd agree with that.
I was an admin for a large, phone company owned, ISP from 1996-2000. Back then, I was one of the few employees that actually used Usenet.
Our official policy was that it was not an advertised or premium service. Very little money and effort was put forth on Usenet, and our help desk probably didn't know what it was.
Barry
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To paraphrase your own recent words, what you are now getting in Internet access from the corporate ISP model currently in vogue is more sizzle and less steak.
It is not UseNet that is dying, it is the technical competence required to run an ISP, with all the attendant services like nntp, that has become a victim of the general corporate incompetence in this country.
The attitude you remark upon has become prevalent as the smaller local ISP's, which were plentiful during the early days of the Internet, have been replaced with these large, corporate ISP's.
Many of the current problems can be traced directly to the technical incompetence that results from hiring inexperienced IT personnel in order to make the bottom line more attractive. Corporate ISP's like AT&T (one of the VERY worst as far as technical competence is concerned, IMNSHO) try make it easy on themselves with self-serving justifications for doing away with the services we came to expect as part of the ISP package not all that long ago.
Those services that they can't outright do away with (yet) they reluctantly continue to provide, but at reduced levels, and with none of the required technical expertise to do the job well.
As a partner in a small Internet company, I deal with the situation on a daily basis, spending increasingly more time wading through self serving corporate directives aimed at justifying technical shortcuts, and arguing, on behalf of our clients, with increasingly incompetent technical personnel who are barely conversant with the basic underpinnings of the Internet.
AAMOF, it is getting so bad that I sometimes fancy you may eventually see some of the older, pre-Internet networks, like FidoNet, rear their heads again.
On second thought, there soon may be no one left competent enough to do even that again.
--
www.e-woodshop.net
Last update: 9/21/03
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Aye, Cry Havoc and Release the Dogs of War!
(i thought fidonet was still extant)
Shall we all become eunuchs (shame on ye tommy, 'tis Unix that spells it) again?
(tom's ready to fire up his old 2400 baud modem and ride to bbs battle)
Regards, Tom Thomas J. Watson-Cabinetmaker Gulph Mills, Pennsylvania http://users.snip.net/~tjwatson
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On Sat, 22 Nov 2003 18:40:39 -0500, "solarman"

satellite feed from Planet Connect but they no longer offer the old service anymore... 2.4Ghz was pretty quick back in 1989 too! Almost makes me want to setup the old Intermail/Proboard combo again... <grin> 'Tis true, solarman, that there have been advances but, I hearken back to the brave days, when modems were modems, and interfaced directally with the handset - Ah, the roar of the handshake, the smell of the download!
(when a single graphics file sat on the phone line overnight)
Yeehaa!
Regards, Tom Thomas J. Watson-Cabinetmaker Gulph Mills, Pennsylvania http://users.snip.net/~tjwatson
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On Sat, 22 Nov 2003 20:44:55 -0500, "solarman"

Mine were a Televideo CPm, mit Dollies (twin floppies).
Hard drives kept in air conditioned luxury by folks far richer than i
I dinna miss that Wordstar v.1
Altho I was smitten by such testoneronic commands as
'global search and destroy'
ye gadz
Regards, Tom Thomas J. Watson-Cabinetmaker Gulph Mills, Pennsylvania http://users.snip.net/~tjwatson
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coda:
and the 2600 boyz was pissin inta da phone lines wid der chirpers
and The Well was both deep and had sweet water
and a Compuserve addy actually meant something
and trolls was more sophisticated - because they had ta be
Regards, Tom Thomas J. Watson-Cabinetmaker Gulph Mills, Pennsylvania http://users.snip.net/~tjwatson
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Hey solar man. Fix your newsreader. You're illegible to us unix types.
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