Spam blights email 15 years on
Posted in: Spam at 02/04/2008 02:36
Spam continues to blight e-mail exactly 15 years after the term was first coined and almost 30 years since the first spam message was sent.
The term is thought to have been coined by Joel Furr, an administrator on the net discussion system Usenet, to refer to unsolicited bulk messages.
More than 90% of all e-mail is spam, according to anti-spam body Spamhaus.
"Spam is a real life arms race," said Mark Sunner, chief analyst at online security firm Message Labs.
Billions of spam e-mails are sent each day, blocking mail servers, slowing down networks, infecting people's computers with viruses, helping hijack machines and generally making the internet a painful experience for many.
Spam, spam, lovely spam
"Spam, lovely spam, wonderful spam," sang the group of Vikings in the famous Monty Python sketch of 1970.
Eight years later the first spam message was sent, while it took another 15 years before unsolicited bulk e-messages were given the popular moniker.
I've been speaking to the man who first coined the term in the sense we understand it today, Joel Furr. And you can see the first recorded use of "spamming" as a term here.
Back in 1993 discussion boards were the popular method of communicating and sites became hit by "spammers" who flooded the boards with abusive postings.