Sunday, October 05, 2008

Thing 42: Following Discussions with Usenet News/Google Groups

I've used usenet newsgroups for quite a while and was delighted when Google took over and maintained the Usenet newsgroup archive from DejaNews. I find that I use usenet for very specific things such as the alliancesecondlife and the LibGaming groups. I also like to see if the books I'm offering as selections in our branch book club are being discussed. It's a place to get ideas for book discussion questions.

I browsed and subscribed to it. I don't know that I will use it often but it is good to see what is being posted. Expecially if something about libraries or librarians comes up in the mainstream press and what people are saying about it.

Overall Usenet/Google Groups works best when there is a group of dedicated users that want a place to discuss topics by invitation only. That way you always know that the messages will be on topic. I suspect that special social networking sites like Ning are also eating away at its user base, but Usenet/Google Groups offers the flexability of having discussions posted to your email in what ever format you choose.



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