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Monday, November 16, 2009

Everyone says they hate it, but...

Spam is universally hated. Not only is it hated, despised, and otherwise frowned upon by everyone, but it is also the topic of a $712 million lawsuit. Facebook sued spammer Sanford Wallace and was awarded the second largest settlement in a spam case. The infamous "Spamford" as he is known was also fined $230 million in a case with MySpace last year.

So why are there so many spammers out there willing to take this risk? Because unfortunately, it works. As much as people claim to hate spam, they sure do make it valuable for the spam dealers. A recent investigation showed that pharmaceutical spam can generate more than $4,000 per day in sales.

Further, the Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group (MAAWG) reports that 52 percent of email users have clicked on spam, with 12 percent of those doing so "because they were actually interested in the product or service being offered." Think of how few people redeem coupons or act on legitimate emails from companies they subscribe to, and these are outstanding numbers. That level of response is enough to keep the spam industry in business.

So who are these rogues who open spam? Considering it is 52%, it must include people that you speak to and who you have heard complain about spam. Another example of people's behavior being counter to what they say.

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