Why do we call junk email ‘Spam’? Well Monty Python of course. It’s a reference to a famous (infamous?) skit in which a man walks into a restaurant and asks what they serve (video after the jump).
The waitress replies:, “Well, there’s egg and bacon; egg sausage and bacon; egg and spam; egg bacon and spam; egg bacon sausage and spam; spam bacon sausage and spam; spam egg spam spam bacon and spam; etc.
At various points Vikings break out into a chorus of “spam spam spam spam”. Early in the history of junk email people started to refer to it as ‘spam’ and the moniker stuck.
Of course this was much to the chagrin of Hormel, makers of the canned meat product ‘Spam’. They have in fact brought numerous suits against anti-spam companies that use ‘Spam’ in their name. They are however okay with the use of ‘spam’ (all lower case) as a slang term to describe junk email.
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