As of September 30th, Verizon no longer provides free Usenet access to its customers and AT&T also stopped providing access as of July 15th.
So if you’re based in the US and a customer of AT&T or Verizon you no longer have access to Usenet through your ISP, but don’t worry, there are alternatives…
First, let me explain to you a little bit more about this portmanteau of “user” and “network”, and later in the article I will give my recommendation for what I consider to be the best usenet server provider at this time.
Here’s how Usenet Learning Center explains Usenet:
Once an area of the internet where only the well-traveled ventured, Usenet Learning Center seeks to shed light on an area of the Internet that has received little focus or attention from mainstream users. However, the Usenet’s greatest area of strength has shown promise as other message-related features of the Internet, such as blogs and forums, bring to light their own inadequacies and point towards a bright future for the Usenet.
Usenet was started in 1979 by students at Duke University, and has proved itself to be the quiet giant of the Internet. This vast repository of online messages boasts over 110,000 areas of interest (called newsgroups) and continues to grow, adding millions of users each year. Decentralized in nature, the message content of the Usenet is carried to millions of servers each day.
Today Usenet has lost a lot of ground to online discussion forums and the like, but Usenet is far from dead. It’s still being used very much for text-based discussion, just like you know from online forums. But one part in particular has become very popular on Usenet in recent years: Binary files.
Binary Usenet Files
Binary files can most easily be explained as “non-text” files (technically speaking they are still text files, but let’s just forget about that for now). More importantly, binary files can be anything from a document file, image file to a video file and much more.
Yes, that means you can download videos too. That includes both legal and illegal videos such movies, TV shows etc. There’s no reason to hide it, this is not China, you can get copyrighted material from Usenet (like anywhere else on the Wild World Web). I just wanted to point it out, so that you are aware of the legal issues.
The main focus, however, is still on the legal side of things, both text based discussions and legal user-created works, open-source software and public domain material.
Free Trial – Best Usenet Server
If you want to check out how fast Usenet downloads can be, I personally recommend UseNetServer which I’ve been using for a few years now.
UseNetServer offers you a free trial so you can try it out risk free. With UseNetServer you get:
- Unlimited downloads
- 397+ days Binary and over 2 years of Text retention
- 99% completion
- Free SSL connections
- Blazing speed (seriously, it’s really fast!)
- 14 day free UseNet Trial as mentioned above.
Feel free to post any comments, or questions you might have, in the comments below.
By the way – if you feel totally lost right about now and haven’t got a clue on how usenet works, try watching this 3 minute video that explains it really well: