Surprising Facts about the origins of Email
Do you remember your life without email? Did you ever wonder how we used to get by sending letters through the mail or sit in amazement that the envelope you drop in your mailbox could be carried to the other side of the planet? Probably not very often because that is just the way things were, so you probably don’t marvel at our new system of instant digital messaging because again that is just how it is.
I opened my email in-box this morning and had 103 pieces of worthless spam, so I started to wonder, Who sent the first spam email? I wondered about the person who sent that first unsolicited email that sparked the chaotic gold rush of spammers who turned to such aggressive methods that companies like ours were born. Boomerang.com and other companies formed a new industry just to guarantee your legitimate emails can dodge their way through a cloud of male enhancement and porn advertisements, all because of this one person. I wondered who it was.
His name is Gary Thuerk, a marketer for Digital Equipment Corporation. On May 3, 1978 Gary spawned the birth of the spamming and anti spamming industries by sending the following message to a group of ARPANET users (mostly at universities and corporations). ARPANET was the first major wide-area computer network.
DIGITAL WILL BE GIVING A PRODUCT PRESENTATION OF THE NEWEST MEMBERS OF THE DECSYSTEM-20 FAMILY; THE DECSYSTEM-2020, 2020T, 2060, AND 2060T. THE DECSYSTEM-20 FAMILY OF COMPUTERS HAS EVOLVED FROM THE TENEX OPERATING SYSTEM AND THE DECSYSTEM-10 <PDP-10> COMPUTER ARCHITECTURE. BOTH THE DECSYSTEM-2060T AND 2020T OFFER FULL ARPANET SUPPORT UNDER THE TOPS-20 OPERATING SYSTEM.
THE DECSYSTEM-2060 IS AN UPWARD EXTENSION OF THE CURRENT DECSYSTEM 2040 AND 2050 FAMILY. THE DECSYSTEM-2020 IS A NEW LOW END MEMBER OF THE DECSYSTEM-20 FAMILY AND FULLY SOFTWARE COMPATIBLE WITH ALL OF THE OTHER DECSYSTEM-20 MODELS.
WE INVITE YOU TO COME SEE THE 2020 AND HEAR ABOUT THE DECSYSTEM-20 FAMILY AT THE TWO PRODUCT PRESENTATIONS WE WILL BE GIVING IN CALIFORNIA THIS MONTH. THE LOCATIONS WILL BE: TUESDAY, MAY 9, 1978 – 2 PM
HYATT HOUSE (NEAR THE L.A. AIRPORT)
LOS ANGELES, CA
THURSDAY, MAY 11, 1978 – 2 PM
DUNFEY’S ROYAL COACH
SAN MATEO, CA
(4 MILES SOUTH OF S.F. AIRPORT AT BAYSHORE, RT 101 AND RT 92)
A 2020 WILL BE THERE FOR YOU TO VIEW. ALSO TERMINALS ON-LINE TO OTHER DECSYSTEM-20 SYSTEMS THROUGH THE ARPANET. IF YOU ARE UNABLE TO ATTEND, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO CONTACT THE NEAREST DEC OFFICE FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE EXCITING DECSYSTEM-20 FAMILY.
So from all of us in the world of legitimate internet marketing or anti spam software companies I would like to thank Gary Thuerk for providing gainful employment.
In case you are curious this is what the diminutive Decsystem looked like: