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Spam Earth

The Ecological Impact of Spam 176

Posted by Soulskill
from the hello-sir-madam dept.
krou writes "A new study entitled 'The Carbon Footprint of Spam' (PDF) published by ICF International and commissioned by McAfee claims that spam uses around 33 billion kilowatt hours of energy annually, which is approximately enough to power 2.4 million US homes (or roughly 3.1 million cars) for a year. They calculated that the average CO2 emission for a spam email is around 0.3 grams. Interestingly, the majority of energy usage (around 80%) comes from users viewing and deleting spam, and searching for legitimate emails within spam filters. They also claim that 'An individual company can find that one fifth of the energy budget of its email system is wasted on spam.' One of the report's authors, Richi Jennings, writes on his blog that 'spam filtering actually saves an incredible amount of energy.' He continues, 'Imagine if every inbox were protected by a state-of-the-art spam filter. We could save about 75% of the spam energy used today — 25 TWh per year; that's like taking 2.3 million cars off the road.""
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The Ecological Impact of Spam

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  • Imagine if every inbox were protected by a state-of-the-art spam filter. We could save about 75% of the spam energy used today â" 25 TWh per year; that's like taking 2.3 million cars off the road.

    My God! That is fantastic! If only we had the option to purchase a "state-of-the-art spam filter!" Wait, I know! McAfee, the people who sponsored and paid for this research, have SpamKiller [mcafee.com]! It's perfect.

    Although I can't access the PDF (download hangs), could you please direct me to the part of the 'research' where you analyze the amount of energy used to perform complex computational functions on tokens from e-mails against a database. And prove that this is less than the energy wasted flipping though e-mails and deleting spam? I mean, the network usage is going to be the same so ... that would have to be some pretty impressive and efficient Bayesian filtering with an amazing database technology to drop below viewing and deleting e-mails.

    And maybe you could factor in the cost and subscription to said state-of-the-art spam filter?

    What? You didn't include that analysis in your research? It sounds like a very crucial part of convincing me to acquire a state-of-the-art spam filter. You missed that part?

    You don't say.

    • by Idiomatick (976696) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @11:54AM (#27587013)
      I think the electricity wasted on your monitor by bringing spam up.. Maybe a few seconds max. That will FAR overshadow any filtering techniques occurring in your processor.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by 0racle (667029)
        Your monitor was most likely going to be running anyway so there is no real power wasted.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Chatterton (228704)
          Yes, but the footprint will not be anymore associated to spam but to an other activity probably more productive like reading Slashdot :D
          • by Destoo (530123)

            "probably" being the key word here.
            Of course, that was bound to happen. 2009 is green.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by somersault (912633)

      There must be massive amounts of energy and bandwidth wasted just punting the stuff around the world, nevermind viewing it once it reaches its destination. The earlier spam is caught and filtered the better.. it's such a waste. We get our mail filtered by MessageLabs before it ever hits our own servers, I reckon we probably get our money's worth quite easily via the bandwidth we're saving. It would still be nice just to wipe it out at the source of course.

    • by wsanders (114993) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @12:31PM (#27587487) Homepage

      Don't let anti-corporate hysteria blind you from looking objectively at this problem. Well, if spam did not exist I would not need a state of the art spam filter. That would be 2U less rack space and about 200W less power I would need to use in my data center. Really, just multiply all the instances of dedicated spam filters, proprietary or otherwise, and it's pretty easy to come up with a number. Plus, I'll bet 5% of Google's resources are dedicated to spam blocking and at least 5% of any ISP's resources are dedicated to transporting it. That's a big number.

      Of course, McAfee would not exist either. Lots of people would be unemployed, and maybe they could find a cure for world hunger or something else useful instead.

      • by Crudely_Indecent (739699) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @12:39PM (#27587563) Journal

        We could treat spammers like some middle eastern countries treat thieves.

        CUT OFF THEIR HANDS!

        Without hands, they can't type out spam messages!

        • i hacve no hsnds and i tpe my postrs withmty nose, you ionsenmsitve cld!
          • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

            by Massacrifice (249974)

            GOT NO HANDS? DONT USE YOUR NOSE TO SEND SPAM! IMPRESS THEM WITH YOUR TOOL! TYPE N CLICK WITH YOUR DICK AND ENLARGE YOUR AUDIENCE!

            (blabla this little sentence added to get pass the /. CAPS filter even if it ruins my joke, but it seems that one sentence is not enough i wonder how much time got spent writing the regex that checks for too many caps in message)

        • by corbettw (214229)
          You've never heard of Dragon software, have you? Though I suppose you could cut out their tongues, too. I mean, they're spammers, is there anything you could do to them that isn't 100% justified?
        • by Culture20 (968837)

          Without hands, they can't type out spam messages!

          Sure they wood bee able two, with dragon naturally peaking. Bonus is dragon wood automatically yews rung words two beet spam filters.

        • by dodobh (65811)

          But they are using botted computers. I guess we could cut off the hands of the owners of botted computers ...

          Or we could just compel them to use a minimal install of OpenBSD.

        • We could treat spammers like some middle eastern countries treat thieves.

          CUT OFF THEIR HANDS!

          Without hands, they can't type out spam messages!

          No, that would be uncivilized.

          Now, we could just ship them straight to Saudi Arabia, so that they can cut off their hands for us.

      • by bitt3n (941736)

        Of course, McAfee would not exist either. Lots of people would be unemployed, and maybe they could find a cure for world hunger

        perhaps the cure is spam

    • by h3llfish (663057)
      And how about the carbon frakking footprint of all of the physical junkmail and newspaper inserts from retailers like Best Buy which contains ads for (among other things) PC security suites? I'm pretty sure that cutting down a tree, making paper, printing an ad, and then delivering it to my house emits just a tad more carbon than me deleting an email. Oh, sweet irony... delicious!
    • But that's only PART of the problem. Imagine how much energy is also used by viruses running these computers nonstop to send out that spam.

      Why, if only there was some company that could supply both an anti-virus AND a spam-filter. That way, we would only need one program, and safe further energy... somehow.

      What's that? McAfee can cover not one, but BOTH of those objectives? Why, what a happy coincidence that the company sponsoring this study can help us in so very many ways!

  • Well, of course it uses energy.

    But you could also argue the fact that nearly as much energy was wasted conducting the survey and then it getting posted to /., then having all those people read it.

    Sounds like an MS study on linux to me...

    • by Z00L00K (682162)

      And don't forget the number of man-hours wasted on anti-spam measures and manual spam handling.

      • by igny (716218)
        And do not forget all the greenhouse emissions from people farting while reading the spam!
  • by HipToday (883113) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @11:47AM (#27586915)
    Are you telling me spam has negative effects?
  • SMTP sucks (Score:5, Insightful)

    by cromar (1103585) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @11:49AM (#27586929)
    I don't care what anybody else says, we need a new protocol for messaging. It could combine the best parts of email with the best parts of social networking/IM/SMS and surpass them all. We need a network where there is some way to ascertain the origin of any email/account. We need automatic encryption. We can still keep SMTP around, there's no need to kill it (so we can have anonymous networks), but we need something else now. I know, I know, easier said than done and put your money where your mouth is, but for my part, I am trying to use email less and less, while switching to Facebook/Twitter/SMS to get in touch with people.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      Your idea of progress is a couple of (fairly spam heavy) proprietary services, and a (fairly spam heavy) $.1 a piece, stuck-in-the-pre-IP-dark-ages, service you have to buy from the phone company?
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by cromar (1103585)
        Considering there was a post on /. a bit ago claiming email was 95% spam... I would guess that services that can identify the message senders* would have less of a problem dealing with spam. Email spam is illegal, but as far as I know, Facebook spam and SMS spam are not. That makes a big difference. There have been plenty breakthroughs in messaging, and email is cold behind the times technically, socially and practically.

        *either through public key encryption (anonymous) or by making people register
      • by ericrost (1049312)

        I guess I don't know your experience, but I use my SMS and facebook to keep in touch with those I care to really keep up with and get zero spam on either of them. I get a bit of ham on facebook, but it was all opt-in.

        Please provide some context to how you end up with spam heavy facebook and sms, as I've been using both for more than two years (ish) and have had no problems.

    • I am trying to use email less and less, while switching to Facebook/Twitter/SMS to get in touch with people.

      But what people? Actually I like your plan. That should keep "those people" out of my e-mail. Let the damn wealth fairy go to twitbook!

      • by cromar (1103585)
        If you want to be snobby about it, that's your prerogative; I just want a decent messaging protocol to be implemented!
    • by Jaeph (710098)

      I agree with your premise, but I don't think it's terribly complicated. We need two laws:

      1. All communication protocols must have an identity field. This may be left blank, which signifies "anonymous".
      2. Lying in the identity field is a federal crime (not misdemeaner, crime).

      That's it. With those, the market can easily construct devices (programs, whatever) to allow consumers to control spam to their heart's content.

      Note that, just as an example, you can already ignore most of your "out of area" phone ca

      • 1) Who's going to pay for all the devices that need to be replaced or updated to support the new communication protocol or the new feature of the existing communication protocols?

        2) Why exactly do spammers outside the jurisdiction of the US and in a country with which the US doesn't have an extradition treaty care about a US federal law? [Repeat with $YOUR_FAVORITE_COUNTRY in place of US in the preceding question.]

        For your final point, you can ignore most of your "out of area" phone calls ... unless you're

        • by Jaeph (710098)

          1) Paying for devices? A mix of capitalism and govt-sponsored welfare for the holdouts, similar to what's happened recently with digital tv (though hopefully learning lessons along the way).

          2) The ones outside of the $COUNTRY don't have to care. The point is that I can block those who don't comply. If necessary, entire countries can be blocked until they setup similar laws. All these things to be worked out, not simply stated by fiat (I'd like to see that diplomacy stuff that we seem to have forgotten

    • Re:SMTP sucks (Score:4, Informative)

      by stevied (169) * on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @01:10PM (#27587979)

      At one point Internet Mail 2000 [cr.yp.to] looked like a nice idea. Quick summary: sender basically "publishes" the outgoing email on their server (or their ISPs server), and sends a ping to the recipient saying where it is.

      This has the advantage, for spam tracking, that you have to have a valid IP address for the sender, which can easily be checked against blacklists. ISPs that detect a spam-run in progress can just drop all the spam from their server, and only recipients that have been really quick on the ball about responding to the pings will get the spam. Also, if a spam filter can make a decision based on the contents on the ping, the whole message doesn't have to be retrieved.

      Looked at another way, it's basically just publishing a private blog entry and sending a notification ..

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by dkleinsc (563838)

      Your post advocates a

      (X) technical ( ) legislative ( ) market-based ( ) vigilante

      approach to fighting spam. Your idea will not work. Here is why it won't work. (One or more of the following may apply to your particular idea, and it may have other flaws which used to vary from state to state before a bad federal law was passed.)

      ( ) Spammers can easily use it to harvest email addresses
      (X) Mailing lists and other legitimate email uses would be affected
      ( ) No one will be able to find the guy or collect the mone

    • by bcrowell (177657)

      We need a network where there is some way to ascertain the origin of any email/account.

      We already have this. It's called dkim (formerly known as domainkeys). Unfortunately it's not all that widely implemented (mainly yahoo and gmail), and I think that's due to a combination of two things. One is that there are network effects that make it not very advantageous to be an early implementer. The other is that dkim is not a very mature implementation and is a PITA to set up, which creates a barrier for people

    • by dodobh (65811)

      So you are switching from an open, peer-to-peer network to one controlled by a single entity (or small set of entities) which will not have your best interests at heart?

      How do you communicate with non-twitter, non-Facebook users anyway?

      • by cromar (1103585)

        So you are switching from an open, peer-to-peer network to one controlled by a single entity (or small set of entities) which will not have your best interests at heart?

        Can't really see a downside, especially because of encryption. Sure I'd love to be using something reliable and popular and spam-free that is based on open, p2p technologies. The problem is that doesn't exist, which is pretty much my point :)

        How do you communicate with non-twitter, non-Facebook users anyway?

        Of course email or phone, but I mostly talk to my friends and they mostly have one or more of SMS, Facebook, phone, or Twitter. That's why I said I am reducing my email usage, and didn't say stopping completely. It's just that an obsoleted technology such as email,

  • by Red Flayer (890720) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @11:50AM (#27586951) Journal

    We could save about 75% of the spam energy used today -- 25 TWh per year; that's like taking 2.3 million cars off the road.

    Or far less than one container ship.

    I know, that's for particulate and SO2 emissions, not CO2.

    But still, kind of puts things in perspective, huh? Imagine if we bought fewer consumer goods from 8000 miles away... and how much less energy would be consumed. It could dwarf the savings from spam filtering -- not that this makes spam filtering any less of a good idea.

    On a side note, I'd like to propose a new standard unit for the metrically challenged.

    Superfreighter -- a unit for large amounts of particulate and SO2 pollution. Approximately equal to 50 million cars.

    • by Chris Burke (6130) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @11:58AM (#27587093) Homepage

      Superfreighter -- a unit for large amounts of particulate and SO2 pollution. Approximately equal to 50 million cars.

      Whoa, whoa. "Car" isn't a standard unit of measurement. I assume you meant Volkswagon Beetles, but then the conversion factor might not be the same.

    • I was going to smartly disprove you but i'll just leave it at.

      I don't believe you.
      • by LordKazan (558383)

        it was in the news just this morning, i'm trying to find it

      • You don't have to believe me. [guardian.co.uk]

        But wait! There's more. Here [eurekalert.org]'s a link to a summary of another study. Sorry I don't subscribe to the Journal of Geophysical Research, or I'd link that actual study.
        • Thanks for the [citations], my cursory google search results were pretty tame. The car thing is still fear mongering though. Cars producing 101g of SO per year means cars don't really produce SO. Thats like saying a single brownie contains 50,000x the trans fat of a stick of 2nd gen margarine. Its true but its a meaningless benchmark. Though! Don't let that take away from the meaningful numbers. 60,000 deaths a year caused by it IS significant.
          Oh and just to play devils advocate. Aside from moving some prod
          • I agree 100% on taxing emissions. I think we need to stop letting companies externalize costs like pollution.

            Problem is, it's damn hard to quantify the costs and assess the tax fairly, especially when we're talking about tens of thousands of pollutants.
    • On a side note, I'd like to propose a new standard unit for the metrically challenged.

      Superfreighter -- a unit for large amounts of particulate and SO2 pollution. Approximately equal to 50 million cars.

      Is this superfreighter carrying breadboxes, or whales maybe? Atomic bombs? I just need some perspective on this new unit of measurement.

      And before I sign off on it, is this metric? Because as an American, I'll be damned if I'm going to use metric.

      • Is this superfreighter carrying breadboxes, or whales maybe? Atomic bombs? I just need some perspective on this new unit of measurement.

        That's the beauty of the unit -- it's cargo-agnostic. It could be carrying flaps-of-butterfly-wings, or ponies (especially those of the OMG! variety), or printed Libraries of Congress if you really want to confuse the issue.

      • by 6031769 (829845)

        Don't worry, you won't have to use complicated metric units like, say, Watts for power. Instead you can use the much simpler kilowatthourperannum as mentioned in TFS.

    • --But still, kind of puts things in perspective, huh? Imagine if we bought fewer consumer goods from 8000 miles away... and how much less energy would be consumed. It could dwarf the savings from spam filtering -- not that this makes spam filtering any less of a good idea.--

      Shipping stuff by container is probably more efficient than rail or trucks to move them. What we really need is to able to capture more energy from the sun whether we create an artificial one here (fusion) or improve the efficiency of so

  • This is silly (Score:5, Insightful)

    by spitzak (4019) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @11:58AM (#27587069) Homepage

    If we worry about wasted computer cycles, I'm sure unnecessary screen savers are responsible for many orders of magnitude more. Or leaving flash animation ads running while you are not looking at it.

    • Or leaving flash animation ads running while you are not looking at

      Not to be confused with those Flash animation ads that you *do* look at.

  • Dear World, (Score:3, Interesting)

    by A. B3ttik (1344591) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @11:58AM (#27587075)
    Please stop responding to SPAM. If no one responds to it, then they won't make any money and they'll stop.

    Sincerely,
    A. Bettik
    • Re:Dear World, (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Samschnooks (1415697) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @12:06PM (#27587195)

      Please stop responding to SPAM. If no one responds to it, then they won't make any money and they'll stop. Sincerely, A. Bettik

      Can you actually respond to them? I once got a spam email and I was in a really pissed off mood and wanted to take it out on someone who deserved it, so I tried to contact the spammer. The email they included didn't work. There wasn't any phone number. I couldn't find any way of contacting them. I can't believe some of those morons actually make any money. Sometimes, I wonder if it's the ISPs that host those assholes that are pushing this shit. Maybe convincing stupid people that they can get rich sending mass electronic marketing or some other made up buzz word that obfuscates the fact that they are selling you a spammer package. Moron spammer buys it, sends out a bunch of emails, and then gives up after a while; only to have another moron take his place? Just guessing.

    • by johannesg (664142)

      Please stop responding to SPAM. If no one responds to it, then they won't make any money and they'll stop.

      I admire your optimism but doubt your conclusion. The problem is that you only have to convince people who actually pay for the spam to pay, and all you really have to convince them is rumours of past success by other spam runs. If I can make you believe that spamming is a succesful advertising strategy, then you might be willing to pay me to use it.

      Of course you would not come back for a second round, but hey, there's another one born every minute...

      • Interesting @ You and SamSchnooks.

        So you both think that the _actual Spammers don't make any money, but are just being bamboozled by the Mass E-Mail Providers into becoming Spammers on promises of wealth?

        I never thought of it like that.
    • by Phroggy (441)

      Please stop responding to SPAM. If no one responds to it, then they won't make any money and they'll stop.

      You have a very simplistic view of the vast world of spam (which, by the way, should not be written in all capital letters [spam.com]). Spammers can make money from spam, without anyone ever buying anything from them.

      Rule #1: spammers lie. Spammers can offer to advertise your product on a double-opt-in targeted mailing list, for a fee. Once you've paid them up front, of course, they send out spam to every address they've scraped off the web, then quietly disappear while an angry mob runs you out of business. In th

    • by furby076 (1461805)
      But where else am I going to buy c|@1|$? It's certainly not advertised at the pharmacy!
  • by tygerstripes (832644) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @11:58AM (#27587087)
    If my mental arithmetic serves, that would be roughlyyyy... 1.21 Gigawatts!
  • Sounds like.. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Jaysyn (203771) <jaysyn+slashdot AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @12:00PM (#27587111) Homepage Journal

    .. someone is taking a popular "problem", tangently tying it to a technological issue & trying to figure out ways to sell feel-good services around them.

  • Oh, really? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mea37 (1201159) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @12:03PM (#27587153)

    The majority of the energy is spent reading the spam and searching spam folders for legit mail, right?

    So where is that energy coming from / going? Perhaps you're counting the energy of running my PC while I'm doing those things? But what's your "0 energy" baseline? Are you assuming that 30 secnods of me searching my email = 30 additional seconds before my computer gets to swtich to power-save mode? Because that's not always true -- it often means 30 seconds less of me playing some game before my ride shows up, and the computer goes to sleep at the same time it would've otherwise.

    Maybe its the energy the server spends reading the email from disk that's significant. That might be a vaild concern...

    • by oneiros27 (46144)

      But if you count it like that, they can't take into account the 30 seconds of breathing that you did while looking at the e-mail, and deciding to delete it or not, and they can't over-inflate their numbers.

  • State-of-the-art filters? No way! Carbon footprint be damned.
    A chance at enlarging the footprint of a certain body part of mine is more important to me!!
    • by furby076 (1461805)
      What the article did not mention is that they are state-of-the art CARBON filters. The article is promoting water filtration devices for your sink. Just click the link on their site and you will receive 30% discount.
  • by BigBlueOx (1201587) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @12:12PM (#27587251)
    I have determined that email spam kills small children! And puppies! And endangered sand panthers!

    The only way we can save our planet from the ecological abuse that is spam is for you to send me money. Lots of money. And then I'll jolly well put a stop to that! And I will too.
  • "cars off the road" is an awesome new unit. Now if only we can get the conversion factor to "Libraries of Congress," we can have some serious fun with numbers!
  • That's it !!!!! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by koan (80826) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @12:17PM (#27587311)

    Everyone is now required to use gmail (best spam filter I've seen)..maybe the G is for green not google.

    • by geekoid (135745)

      McAfree would shit their pants if everyone did that.

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      I get quite a bit of spam from gmail accounts to my gmail account. I sometimes think that gmail is penalizing me for being a good spam filterer by handing me extra spam to categorize :( On the other hand, I have over 6,000 messages in my 30-day-retention spam folder, so I guess it's not a serious problem.

  • Most spam is sent from hijacked computers, so they're stealing OUR power to send spam to US.

  • be running anyways?
    Stupid and and tenuous at best.

  • Not really... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by roc97007 (608802) on Wednesday April 15, 2009 @01:15PM (#27588061) Journal

    >'Imagine if every inbox were protected by a state-of-the-art spam filter. We could save about 75% of the spam energy used today -- 25 TWh per year; that's like taking 2.3 million cars off the road.'

    Um, yeah. No. Stopping spam at the recipient end, after it's already been generated at someone else's compromised machine and gone through all those tubes and things, isn't going to save much in the way of actual energy. I suspect this number is wildly optimistic, IE, made up.

    I mean, I hate spam as much as the next computer user, maybe even more, as sysadmins see more of the larger impact. There is some amount of vicarious satisfaction in focusing the Fury of the Greens at spam. But if you're really sincere about saving energy, and not just indulging in hyperbole, you want to stop it at the sending end.

    • by richi (74551)
      Um, no. Consider that state-of-the-art spam filters reject the vast majority of spam, so it never actually gets sent.
      Richi Jennings
  • 'spam filtering actually saves an incredible amount of energy.' He continues, 'Imagine if every inbox were protected by a state-of-the-art spam filter. We could save about 75% of the spam energy used today -- 25 TWh per year; that's like taking 2.3 million cars off the road."
  • Change your email address once every six weeks, don't ever user your real email address to subscribe to online mags, like slashdot ..
  • Talking of spam in mid 2009, is like being stuck in Groundhog Day [wikipedia.org] or these people who seem to be stuck in the same 36 hours [wikipedia.org].
  • "33 billion kilowatt hours of energy annually, which is approximately enough to power 2.4 million US homes (or roughly 3.1 million cars) for a year"

    You can't power cars with kilowatts. If you're going to make a nonsensical unit conversion, make it good. Spam uses around 8.761 x 10^16 foot pounds, or 1.188 x 10^24 ergs, or 7.451 x 10^35 electron volts. Still working on how many parsecs it would cut off the the Kessel run.

    • by richi (74551)
      ROTFL. Somebody helpfully omitted the phrase, "equivalent to the CO2 emissions of"
      Richi Jennings
  • From the article: "A year's email at a typical medium-sized business uses 50,000 KWh."

    What's a "medium sized business"? In the US, 100 to 500 employees. In the EU, 50 to 250 employees. So let's use 250 employees as a "typical medium sized business".

    How much email infrastructure is needed for 250 employees? Not much. If you use Microsoft's sizing data for Exchange servers [microsoft.com], Microsoft says you need 2.5 MIPS per mailbox, and 0.75 I/O operations per second per mailbox. So for 250 employees, one low-e

  • Wow, this may be the ticket to get politicians to pass some anti-spam laws with real teeth to them. All politicians want to look good. Looking like they are saving the environment is a good cause.
    • by furby076 (1461805)
      Except when part of the bill requires everyone to purchase anti-spam filters (approved ones only - duh).
  • The fundamental point doesn't have much to do with environmental impact, although large data centers do have a large footprint in whatever units. The real issue is who pays the price and whether society should reward such behavior. The only people who would argue for spam providing a "benefit" are the spammers and meta-spammers themselves.

    The economic footprint of an activity almost always comes down to the tragedy of the commons [dieoff.org]. Not just why should society put up with such antisocial and expensive beha

  • He continues, 'Imagine if every inbox were protected by a state-of-the-art spam filter. We could save about 75% of the spam energy used today

    For every security system made there is someone who is able to break through it. Besides, this guy is just trying to promote his shitware. Hate mcaffee.

    This spam issue will be solved when gov'ts actively seek/prosecute spammers and the people they are advertising for (you think Viagra will pay spammers once they get slammed with fines from the gov't?)

  • I have a box trapper on my webhosting account. Any non-white listed sender has to respond to an automated email. Am I helping by blocking spam, or am I hindering by sending additional e-mails?
  • How much of it is from Jack Thompson? [slashdot.org]
  • If the majority of the energy is being consumed by end users searching through spam quarantines for false positives, then it would make sense to reject spam instead of quarantining it. (Yes, that's what I do on my server.) In that case, you never pay to store the spam (energy savings), your end users never have to search for real mail within the spam (time and energy savings), and in the event of a false positive, the sender knows that the message didn't make it through because they get a bounce. In my o

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