On episode 28 of The Science Channel's "Beyond Tomorrow" there is a segment discussing wireless security. The expert for the segment is Adam Laurie, the founder of a company called The Bunker. The episode featured a datacenter built by Adam in an old missile silo in the United Kingdom.
Adam was speaking with the host of the show regarding the original purchase of the silo. He said "They wanted to sell it (missile silo) but at the same time they wanted to keep it secret so you had to actually know it was for sale". He went on to say that he had heard about the sale of the silo after reading discussions in "Newsgroups".
Obviously, Usenet is a great source of inside information on a variety of topics. Classifieds, real estate, dating and employment newsgroups are just a few of the groups people use to gather information for use in their personal and professional lives. Adam was able to use newsgroups to get inside information on the sale of a unique facility in a way he might not have been able to through traditional sources.
For years Usenet has been a source of information you can't readily get in other mediums. On June 5th, 1991, Kelly Goen posted the first release of PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) on Usenet on behalf of PGP's developer, Philip Zimmermann. As you may know, PGP was a huge breakthrough in digital security and was available via the Usenet community before any other widely used medium.
Whether people are using newsgroups to share information on the availability of unique facilities or to find a new job, there are countless ways to participate in the Usenet community to improve your personal or professional life.
What are some of the ways you've been able to use information from text newsgroups to purchase something unique, get a job, or otherwise get information you might not have been able to get through more traditional sources?