The First Spam: May 1, 1978

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Happy(?) birthday, spam. No, not the canned meat by-products.

The first piece of unsolicited bulk e-mail (what will come to be known as spam) is written. When it’s sent two days later, more than 400 people with an Arpanet address receive a promotional message sent by Gary Thuerk, a marketer for Digital Equipment Corporation. It’s been pretty much downhill from there.

Unsurprisingly, this early feat of cluelessness foreshadowed the fall of DEC. Interesting that, on May 1, 2007, people spammed Digg to defend the First Amendment.

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