Another week of “moist”…

According to the weather it's going to be another week of gray and wet. At least Friday was nice. I guess one day of sun per month is the RDA for Virginia.

In other news it's April 12! The Spamiversary!

Back on this day in 1994, a pair of attorneys in Arizona launched a homemade marketing software program that forever changed the Internet.

From Cnet this morning:

Hoping to drum up some business, Laurence Canter dashed off a Perl script that flooded online message boards with an advertisement pitching the legal services of Canter & Siegel, the law firm he ran with his then wife, Martha Siegel.

The response was immediate and harsh, offering one of the loudest signals up to that point that unchecked marketing would not be tolerated in the new medium. Thousands of recipients registered their displeasure, and a new label for the burgeoning business of unsolicited mass Internet advertising was coined.

“Send coconuts and cans of Spam to Cantor & Co.,” one outraged Usenet reader wrote amid the uproar that followed the Canter & Siegel message. “(Be sure to drop the can of Spam on its seam first.)”

Ten years after Web surfers began using the spam label to describe intrusive online marketing, junk e-mail has ballooned into an epidemic of massive proportions. But righteous anger over the problem has increasingly been replaced by resignation. With no effective solution in sight, many people now ruefully wonder whether the “Internet era” might more accurately be dubbed the “age of spam.”

Despite unceasing efforts to rein in junk e-mailers–including federal legislation aimed at limiting the practice enacted in the United States–spam is big business. Some of its most shameless purveyors have raked in fortunes, while the rest of the world has paid in frustration, wasted time and stolen network resources that one recent study, by analyst firm Basex, valued at $20 billion per year.

Even Canter later claimed that his pitch was a success, bringing in between $100,000 and $200,000 in business.

Read more about it here.

Thomas DolbyClose But No Cigar