It's annoying, offensive and expensive, apart from being a complete waste
of bandwidth. Yes, we all hate spam and wish that someone would do some-
thing to prevent spammers from clogging our mailboxes.
But the sad truth is that there are no clear-cut laws for regulating unsolicit-
ed bulk e-mail. Plus the economics of spamming are just too good to ignore:
sending out vast amounts of e-mail is very cheap and even a small per cent of
replies are enough for the spammers to make money. With entry barriers being
so low and potential profits so enticing, the problem of spam is likely to get
worse before it improves.
Experts predict that in the next few years, we'll all receive upwards of 10 junk
e-mails a day. That's probably more than the official e-mails that most of us send
or receive on any given day.
So who is to blame for this mess?
We are. We've dug this hole ourselves and now are living with the conse-
The Internet is a revolutionary communication tool that allows us to keep
in touch with anyone who is connected to it. But as with all technological
advancements, it also has the potential to be exploited.
We've been taught right from our childhood to never talk to strangers and
to be very careful while giving away personal information. Surely none of us
roam the city streets wearing a T-shit claiming: "Hi I'm Joe Simpleton. This is
where I live and you can call me anytime on this number." But for no apparent
reason, this common sense wisdom deserts us when we're online.
Sure, for some of us, it might be a job requirement to make available our
e-mail addresses on company Web sites and other open forums. Unfortunately
for these poor souls, there's no path to redemption other than to simply shrug
off spam as a necessary evil.
But for the rest of us, it's simply a matter of making a small shift in our
online habitsthat we will not make available our e-mail address to any and
every person or Web site that asks for it.
The real challenge however is to find a permanent solution for this wide