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Difference Between Chat, Newsgroups and Web Forums

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Reply to topic    Forum Pakistan - Pakistani Forums Home » Computers
Difference Between Chat, Newsgroups and Web Forums
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Joined: 15 Feb 2007
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Difference Between Chat, Newsgroups and Web Forums
The many communication methods that the Internet has to offer can be daunting. To keep up with this rapidly expanding system, it helps to understand the differences between basic forms of public Internet discussion.

1. A chat room is an environment in which users have real-time conversations with each other online. Messages are immediately visible to everyone in the room, and usually disappear after a few more messages. Most chat services offer users the option of creating private rooms with as few as two users. Chat rooms are found through Internet service providers (such as America Online) as well as Web sites.

2. Newsgroups are a separate Internet service from the Web. To access a newsgroup, you need to know the address of a news server to get the news from. Most ISPs offer newsgroup services; ask your ISP if you don't know the server address. Many e-mail programs, such as Outlook Express, can also be used to read newsgroups, and there are news-reading programs as well. Newsgroup messages can be viewed by other subscribers and usually stay up for extended periods of time (a few hours to a few days to a few weeks, depending on the particular newsgroup). Replies to a message are posted as substrings to the original message, so that the whole thread of a topic stays together. Newsgroups are often moderated and subject to stricter rules than chat rooms. Many newsgroups provide FAQs (frequently asked questions) in order to acquaint newcomers with the rules, regulations and "netiquette" of the particular group. Newsgroups tend to be very focused: The discussion might be only about folk music, or only postings of recipes (no discussion!) or only about programming for Windows.

3. Web forums, also called discussion boards, function in a similar way to newsgroups, except that they are available through individual Web sites. A Web site for graphic design, for example, might have a forum attached to it.

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