Google’s Abandoned Library of 700 Million Titles

That library is Usenet, a vast internet- and dial-up-based message board system erected in 1980. Though moribund today, for decades Usenet was the paper of record for the online world, and its hundreds of millions of “newsgroup” postings chronicle everything from the birth of the web to the rise of Microsoft, as well as more trivial matters.

Asked if the bugs are documented anywhere, or if Google planned on repairing its library, a company spokesman was noncommittal. “We’re aware of some problems with the way search is working in Google Groups,” said Jason Freidenfelds, in an e-mail. “We’re always working to improve our products.”

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