A newsreader is a program that browses, locates, and allows you to participate in newsgroups. In more technical terms, a newsreader is a special client application that allows you to access newsgroups on Usenet. Client application means that the newsreader program operates as a visiting client, representing requests for information from your computer to a server on the Internet. Usenet is the backbone of newsgroups on the Internet; it’s essentially a large bulletin board where messages are posted, read, and responded to. Through the use of a newsreader, you may read, post, respond to, and initiate discussions in any newsgroup you have an interest in. Many commercial Web browsers, such as Internet Explorer® or Netscape Navigator®, provide you with a newsreader. However, there are other ways to obtain newsreaders – you can either obtain one free of charge from the author or you may obtain one that you are obligated to pay for if you use it frequently. Also, there are stand-alone programs that are also newsreaders. “Stand-alone” means that the newsreader doesn’t rely on another machine to operate. To participate in newsgroups, you must have access to a newsreader.
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