HARLEY HAHN'S USENET CENTER
Usenet has been around for a long time, and throughout the years, people have developed a large number of customs and traditions. Some of these customs have to do with how Usenet is organized and maintained. Other customs involve how people talk, behave, and use certain words. The overall effect is to keep Usenet running smoothly, and to allow people to communicate well without face-to-face contact. In the next few sections, I am going to explain a number of important ideas and traditions you will encounter as you start to use Usenet.
In general, Usenet groups are available for everyone to read. However, some newsgroups are MODERATED, which means that posting articles to the group is controlled by a person called the MODERATOR. All articles that are posted to a moderated newsgroup are first sent to the moderator. He or she looks at each article and decides whether or not to send it to the group.
Moderators do not censor. Rather, they discard articles that do not properly belong in the newsgroup. For these reasons, many people prefer moderated groups because the discussion is more focused, and there is no spam (which can be an important consideration).
In most cases, you can't tell if a newsgroup is moderated just by looking at the name. You will have to look at the articles within the group. If you use my master Usenet newsgroup list, it will tell you if a group is moderated.
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