ARCHIVED: In Usenet, what is a cascade?

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In Usenet usage, a cascade is a series of trivial follow-up postings, usually with each addition consisting of a single-line rhyme or comment. Most cascades look similar to the following:

  > > > > You're really silly.
  > > > Is your name Billy?
  > > You like Milli-Vanilli!
  > Greece is hilly.
  Let's post willy-nilly.

Not only do such postings not substantially contribute to any discussion, they involve the wasteful quoting of an entire article with minimal additions. Furthermore, people posting responses at distant sites with different news propagation speeds may cause cascades to splinter into multiple, divergent cascades, filling a newsgroup with garbage postings. (There is, however, a newsgroup specifically dedicated to cascades: alt.cascade.)

Usenet messages are transmitted around the world to thousands of computers, so pointless postings waste network resources and cost money for people who pay to receive Usenet news. Cascades often frustrate people who are trying to carry on more substantive discussions in newsgroups.

Please do not participate in cascades. You will help make Usenet a much more enjoyable forum for discussion.

This is document afhb in the Knowledge Base.
Last modified on 2018-01-18 10:00:42.

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