Brad Templeton: Origin …

Brad Templeton: Origin of the word “spam” to mean net abuse

A few readers have reported that they have never gotten a single piece of spam at their Hotmail accounts. I wonder what’s going on here? Perhaps someone from Microsoft would care to explain this?

More Spam Nonsense: I’m starting to experience a problem with some Web sites and organizations regarding unsolicited email. These are legitimate companies (not traditional spammers) who offer methods for getting off their mailing lists, announcement lists, etc. Whenever I get an unsolicited email from such a company, I follow their instructions, change my email preference settings in their profile database, unsubscribe, notify them I no longer want their emails, whatever. Yet, it never fails. A few weeks later, I again am still receiving emails from them. I’ve been keeping track of what companies and organizations that have done this to me and have not honored my request to be removed from their lists, and now when I receive this unwanted email I unceremoniously report it as spam. If the company comes running to me because I did so, I have the proof that I followed their unsubscribe and removal instructions, but that my requests went unfulfilled. I’ve found that some companies are not being honorable in their marketing efforts and are only offering these unsubscribe/removal options because they do not want to be labeled or portrayed as spammers. Yet, in this case they are even worse than spammers because they are a legitimate company who is intentionally abusing the trust of their users and subscribers. I have found that with several of these companies in question the only way to stop receiving email compeltely is to change your profile setting to an email address that goes nowhere.

So many people liked my comments on spam the other day, I’ve moved it to the Essays section. It will also remain in the archives.

Posted by Cameron Barrett at December 18, 2001 05:55 PM

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