What’s the Worst That Could Happen?

Published by in Computer
10th Aug 2006

I get spam now. I never had my own email address prior to just about a week ago, and now I get spammed but only a little bit. Another family member gets about 600 spams a day. He gets so many he can’t even delete it all fast enough. The reason for all that spamming? Well, in his case, it’s online questionnaires that he fills out all the time. In my case, I’m spammed for just existing.

Seriously, I have no idea why I get spammed like I do. I’ve gotten several invitations to help somebody in Africa ship thousands of dollars to my account, I’ve been asked about my credit line, I’ve gotten ads for a new car, and free laptops. I delete it all quickly and easily. Sometimes it’s really hard not to open those emails to just have a little peek at what’s in there. I mean, really, what’s the worst that could happen?

A virus could happen, but not to me, you know. No, never to me. My computer is virus free and totally healthy. I feed that thing vitamins and it cheerfully plugs along, giving me more spam with cute little friendly intros, like: “hello.” Now who can resist hello? Another one shouted HELP ME!! Wow, help me? That’s a scary one. That was the first spam mail I deleted, but I’ll probably always wonder what it was about. Probably from some poor internet rookie who was trying to get somewhere online and is stuck perpetually in the limbo between destinations, always wondering if he’ll ever get anywhere or be stuck there forever.

So, I check my spam, and I delete my spam, and then I watch the spam reproduce itself in alarming numbers. What the spammers do is send their stupid message to everyone on my server who has a name similar to mine. It’s the modern form of telemarketing in all its glory. Only thing is, this form of telemarketing is a lot less annoying than the phone kind. The reason is simple: There’s no noise involved from a constantly ringing phone, and ignoring them is easy.

I guess it doesn’t matter that I’m getting spammed for the first time in my life. It’s what is expected in the world of the internet and it’s probably about time I joined the club. Still, it was kind of nice being spam-free for a while, oblivious to the pain of others getting spammed to death. I don’t think I’ll be filling out any questionnaires any time soon, because that is just the lure that drags in the fish.

I wonder sometimes about all these people who are getting the same spam I am. What are they doing to deserve that kind of service? Do they fill out questionnaires or do they just sit there and visit web-sites like me? One of these days I should email one of them to find out. After all? What’s the worst that could happen?