SPAM Email. Where Did Your Name Come From?

08 February 2017

Adi Young

Written by Adi Young | @adiyoung

Hate is a strong word – one I don’t use very often, but sometimes something must give. 
So, regardless of who you are or what kind of business you work for, I’m going to have a wild shot in the dark and hazard guess that we all share a mutual and passionate ‘hate’ for a little unsolicited type of email we all call SPAM!

The official Oxford English Dictionary definitions for SPAM are as follows:

1. Irrelevant or unsolicited messages sent over the Internet, typically to a large number of users, for the purposes of advertising, phishing, spreading malware, etc.
2. trademark A tinned meat product made mainly from ham.

Why call it SPAM?
The term SPAM derives from a very funny Monty Python skit from 1970, where a group of vikings sitting in the corner of a café keep repeating the word SPAM (spam, spam, spam spam), which drowns out all other conversation in the room. Then for no reason what-so-ever (UNWANTED) SPAM keeps popping up all over the menu. 

Spam Email

So now you know the truth!

But... if you read the BBC website you’re led to believe otherwise.
That’s right, there’s another theory as to where SPAM got it’s name from. 

“what tech folks call spam (fake meat/junk mail)” – BBC website 2013 (love how their “Technology correspondent”, Mark Ward, calls us “tech folks”)

Believe which theory you want – it doesn’t really matter as there is somebody else in the email family you need to know about. Meet Bacn (pronounced: bacon), SPAM's younger, just-as-annoying little brother.

Stay tuned!

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