Newsgroups can include hundreds of different topics and comments on virtually anything related to digital photography — in a single day. Newsgroup can offer information you’d never pick up anywhere else. Newsgroups also offer speed of response: If you have a question, you can post it on a newsgroup and sometimes get an answer in minutes. Get on the newsgroup bandwagon:


Install a newsreader program on your computer.

The most popular newsreaders are Agent and the newsreader built into Outlook Express (shown in this figure). However, you can also search through newsgroup postings with a Web browser by accessing Google Groups.


Tell your newsreader which news server to use and connect to that server.

This process varies by newsreader, but this figure shows how to do it in Outlook Express’s newsreader.


Download a list of groups available from that source.

Once you’ve done this, choose the ones to which you want to subscribe.


Download the available message headers (titles of the posts), sort through them, and mark specific messages for retrieval.

Messages are most frequently listed by thread, meaning all the messages stemming from an original post. Viewing threads lets you follow a discussion easily.

Although the process might sound complicated, newsgroups are a great resource for collecting a lot of varied information on many different topics.

At any time, you can respond to a post by typing a message of your own. After you send your reply, it’s uploaded to your particular news server and then distributed to all the other news servers that carry that particular newsgroup.