The news URL scheme is used to refer to either news groups or individual articles of USENET news, as specified in RFC 1036.
A news URL takes one of two forms:
A <newsgroup-name> is a period-delimited hierarchical name, such as "comp.infosystems.www.misc". A <message-id> corresponds to the Message-ID of section 2.1.5 of RFC 1036, without the enclosing "<" and ">"; it takes the form <unique>@<full_domain_name>. A message identifier may be distinguished from a news group name by the presence of the commercial at "@" character. No additional characters are reserved within the components of a news URL.
If <newsgroup-name> is "*" (as in <URL:news:*>), it is used to refer to "all available news groups".
The news URLs are unusual in that by themselves, they do not contain sufficient information to locate a single resource, but, rather, are location-independent.