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  • /yoos'net/ or /yooz'net/ n. [from `Users' Network'; the original spelling was USENET, but the mixed-case form is now widely preferred] A distributed bboard (bulletin board) system supported mainly by UNIX machines. Originally implemented in 1979--1980 by Steve Bellovin, Jim Ellis, Tom Truscott, and Steve Daniel at Duke University, it has swiftly grown to become international in scope and is now probably the largest decentralized information utility in existence. As of early 1993, it hosts well over 1200 newsgroups and an average of 40 megabytes (the equivalent of several thousand paper pages) of new technical articles, news, discussion, chatter, and flamage every day.