Spam is usually considered to be electronic junk mail or junk newsgroup postings. The term spam can also be used to describe any "unwanted" email from a company or website -- typically at some point a user would have agreed to receive the email via subscription list opt-in -- a newer term called graymail is used to describe this particular type of spam.
Spam first made its mark in the world in 1978 when Gary Thuerk, Marketing Director of Digital Equipment Technology sent an email solicitation to 400 employees at Arpnet. The email created a few sales, but it also created fierce backlash. Today, more than 780 billion spam messages are sent out each day to over 2 billion Internet users. This staggering statistic makes it clear why spam is such a major problem for Internet users. Many companies are working hard to solve the spam problem, but the first step to stopping spam starts with the consumer.
There is nothing like checking your email only to find out that your inbox is swamped with unsolicited message from people you do not know. No you’re not interested to buy dog food, beauty products, slimming pills, plants, or software! But still, you get these irritating emails.
The first step in your antispam campaign may well be to understand spam and how it works.
Spam is usually defined as unsolicited e-mail that is delivered in bulk. It has become so prevalent because it's cheap, reaches the greatest number of folks in the least amount of time, and because it's unregulated. In the U.S. alone more than 50 million citizens are online, with their own Internet accounts.
For spammers this is an ideal situation. Even were it not to work, there's virtually no punishment other than subsequent inability to spam until a way is found around it. And ways are constantly found around just about everything we do in our antispam campaign. That's not to say you shouldn't try though.