But What If You Like Spam?

Email folders, with ’Spam' replaced with 'Meat Food Product'

A few days ago, after noticing that Gmail displays links to Spam-based recipes in the sponsored links bar when you’re in the ’Spam’ folder, I began to wonder: how does Hormel, the maker of Spam, feel about its food being associated with the insidious crud of the web and online communication? I also wondered whether Hormel employees are internally forbidden from referring to it as ’spam’. Well, apparently Hormel doesn’t object, for the most part though they stipulate that their product should be denoted as ’SPAM’ and the junk email as ’spam’.

I brought up this odd little thought to my friend Steve and he commented that this brings up other spam-related questions. For example, can you imagine being the sys-admin at Eli Lilly & Co., the maker of Cymbalta, Prozac, and Cialis? I wonder how much spam floods into their servers because so many hot spam subjects are part of their business. “Hey Bob, can you resend me that ‘Get Your Cialis Cheap Online!’ proposal from last week? Thanks.” Perhaps they have extra-stringent policies about what email comes in? I’d guess that things like ’c1alis’ and ’pr0zac’ the like are automatically filtered out. Or do they occupy some sort of low-spam bubble? I mean, they actually make and sell the drugs, so do spammers remove ’@lilly.com’ emails from their databases? I imagine sending spam to Eli Lilly would only be asking for trouble with virtually no upside. Hell, they probably have Cialis in the executive candy bowls there.

And what about sexual dysfunction clinics, Rolex, online universities, and adult entertainment companies? I guess there are enough spam subjects that it might not make a difference, but you have to wonder whether this creates a problem for them, or minimizes it. Anyway, keep an eye out for ironically topical comment spam on this topic. Before I delete it.