How to Remove Posts From Usenet Newsgroups

Written by kenny soward
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How to Remove Posts From Usenet Newsgroups
Newsgroups are worldwide discussion groups. (Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images)

You may find it alarming to know that you cannot remove something you have posted to a Usenet newsgroup. Usenet newsgroups are worldwide discussion groups that allow users to comment and post files related to specific subjects. These posts are distributed across various news services and can be archived by just about anyone. Therefore, it is impossible to ensure the deletion of your post across all the news services. You can, however, achieve some success in removing or reducing the circulation of your post.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy


  1. 1

    Send out a cancellation notice as soon as possible. Open your newsgroup reader, highlight your post and issue the cancel command. The cancel command in XNews is found by highlighting the post, clicking "Article" and then "Cancel Message." In Thunderbird, right-click on the post and select "Cancel." Your cancellation request may not be accepted by all news services, but it may work for some.

  2. 2

    Request that your post be deleted from Google Groups. If you still own the original e-mail address under which you posted the message, sign into Google Groups using that account. Find your post, and click "More Options." Click "Remove" and then "Yes" when it asks you if you would like to remove the post now. Click "Confirm" to finalise the process. Google Groups is a popular place for people to access Usenet newsgroups, so you may limit your post's exposure by doing this.

  3. 3

    Contact the moderator of the newsgroup where you posted, and ask them to remove the post. Type "news.groups.questions" into your newsgroup reader's search field, and subscribe to the group. Create a post in "news.groups.questions" requesting the moderator information for the newsgroup where your post resides. If you receive the moderator's e-mail address, send them a message requesting the removal of your post. There is no guarantee that the moderator will remove your post, or that the newsgroup is moderated at all.

Tips and warnings

  • Type the text "X-No-Archive:yes" into the header of every post you make in the future. This tells the news service (and those archiving posts) not to archive this particular message. Over time, the message will expire, provided the news service honoured your request, although there is no guarantee they will.

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