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Usenet Addressing: Newsgroups, Newsgroup Hierarchies and Types
(Page 3 of 4)
Other Newsgroup Hierarchies
For those who prefer a more free-wheeling
environment and do not want to submit to the Big Eight procedures, there
is the alternative Usenet hierarchy, which begins with the
hierarchy name alt. This hierarchy includes many thousands of
groups. Some are quite popular, but many are not used at all; this is
a side-effect of the relative ease with which an alt group can be created.
In addition to these nine hierarchies
there are dozens of additional, smaller hierarchies. Many of these are
regional or even company-specific. For example, the ne.
hierarchy contains a set of newsgroups discussing issues of relevance
to New England; fr.* covers France, and de.*
Germany. Microsoft has its own set of public newsgroups in the microsoft.*
hierarchy. Figure 311
shows the Big Eight hierarchies and some of the other hierarchies that
Figure 311: Usenet Newsgroup Hierarchies
Usenet newsgroups are arranged into tree-like structures called hierarchies. Eight of these are centralized, widely-used, general-purpose hierarchies, which are today called the Big Eight. The alternate (alt) hierarchy is a very loosely-structured set of thousands of groups covering every topic imaginable. In addition to these, there are many hundreds of regional, private and special-purpose hierarchies.
Key Concept: Usenet messages are not addressed to individual users; rather, they are posted to newsgroups. Each newsgroup represents a topic; those with an interest in the subject of a group can read messages in it, and reply to them as well. Usenet newsgroups are arranged into tree-like hierarchies that are similar in structure to DNS domains. Many of the most widely-used newsgroups are found in a collection of general-interest hierarchies called the Big Eight. There are also many regional and special-purpose hierarchies.
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Version 3.0 - Version Date: September 20, 2005
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