Following the social impacts of patent and copyright legal & political activity has become an obsession for me so almost impatient to see how this latest foray into "user education" (how 1970s commie does that sound?) pans out. Especially Verizon's commitment to throttle accts. For what VZ service costs it's ballsy of them to threaten throttling to a trickle and if widely done I suspect they'll will regret it.
Six Strikes won't affect usenet much at all. If you use SSL, then no 3rd party will be able to intercept your datastream and identify copyrighted material and the New Servers keep no logs.
Everytime there is a crackdown in one part of p2p filesharing, we see increased interest in usenet as an alternative. Usually refugees from programs like edonkey, bearshare, and Winmx are quite happy once they make the switch to usenet and don't miss their old programs. The current situation with usenet & DMCA is likely to create a bad experience for newbies who sign up for a server and see nothing but incompletes. Fortunately the major usenet providers offer trials but usenet could acquire a bad reputation and we could have a less vibrant community without fresh infusions of new people.