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Spam : a shadow history of the Internet

Author: Finn Brunton
Publisher: Cambridge, Massachusetts : The MIT Press, [2013]
Series: Infrastructures series.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
The vast majority of all email sent every day is spam, a variety of idiosyncratically spelled requests to provide account information, invitations to spend money on dubious products, and pleas to send cash overseas. Most of it is caught by filters before ever reaching an in-box. Where does it come from? As Finn Brunton explains in Spam, it is produced and shaped by many different populations around the world:  Read more...
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Genre/Form: History
Geschiedenis (vorm)
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Finn Brunton
ISBN: 9780262018876 026201887X 9780262527576 026252757X
OCLC Number: 813540884
Awards: Winner of Winner, 2013 American Publishers Award for Professional and Scholarly Excellence (PROSE Award) in Computing & Information Sciences, presented by the Professional and Scholarly Publishing Division of the Association of American Publishers 2013
Description: xxiii, 270 pages ; 25 cm.
Contents: Introduction: The shadow history of the internet --
Ready for next message : 1971-1994 --
Make money fast : 1995-2003 --
The victim cloud : 2003-2010 --
Conclusion.
Series Title: Infrastructures series.
Responsibility: Finn Brunton.

Abstract:

What spam is, how it works, and how it has shaped online communities and the Internet itself.  Read more...

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The book, a beautifully written and entertaining one, adopts an historical approach to the discussion of spam and the 'technological drama' that it manifests...The real value of the book however, Read more...

 
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Most of it is caught by filters before ever reaching an in-box. Where does it come from? As Finn Brunton explains in Spam, it is produced and shaped by many different populations around the world: programmers, con artists, bots and their botmasters, pharmaceutical merchants, marketers, identity thieves, crooked bankers and their victims, cops, lawyers, network security professionals, vigilantes, and hackers. Every time we go online, we participate in the system of spam, with choices, refusals, and purchases the consequences of which we may not understand. This is a book about what spam is, how it works, and what it means. Brunton provides a cultural history that stretches from pranks on early computer networks to the construction of a global criminal infrastructure. The history of spam, Brunton shows us, is a shadow history of the Internet itself, with spam emerging as the mirror image of the online communities it targets. Brunton traces spam through three epochs: the 1970s to 1995, and the early, noncommercial computer networks that became the Internet; 1995 to 2003, with the dot-com boom, the rise of spam\'s entrepreneurs, and the first efforts at regulating spam; and 2003 to the present, with the war of algorithms -- spam versus anti-spam. 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