by Mike Masnick

How Many People Read Or Buy From Spam?

from the you-are-the-problem dept

While you have to take any of these "how much money does spam cost" estimates with a very large grain of salt, the latest one also includes a bit of other info that's much more interesting. Apparently 14% of spam recipients read the spam they get, with a total of 4% admitting to buying from spam. We've had a number of anecdotal stories about people who buy from spam, but here's a bit more evidence on the overall numbers. So, now, how do we track down that 4% and whack them with the cluestick? A more cynical person might suggest spamming them, since they obviously read and pay attention to the spam they get.

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  • identicon
    Boilerbob, 3 Feb 2005 @ 6:43am

    Two minutes a day!

    Two minutes a day is causing a giant problem?? If everyone only spend 2 minutes, I doubt that we would have all this headlines about spam. Without filtering tools it would take hours, that's a problem.

    I would also like to see a breakout between legitiment companies and the various suspect spams. I've bought a lot online over the years so I get a fair amount of commercial emails from retailers like and to name a few. I can live with those. I get 2 or 3 a day and yes sometimes I read those. 2 more emails a day from companies I trust to deliver products from now doesn't drain my time. It's like ads in a newspaper, if I want to read them they are there. If I want to read the news, I can ignore the ads.

    What I have a problem with is the thousands of refiance, viagra, and porn that I also get. These are the time wasters as I would never read or buy from these. I would like to see a survey based on who buys V!5GR5

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    thecaptain, 3 Feb 2005 @ 8:21am

    easy fix...but morally, ethically, and legally tro

    Become a spammer yourself, but instead of selling anything, just mimic other spam and change all the links to infect with various machine destroying viruses.

    Eventually people WILL learn not to read or click on spam links.

    I'm not talking about spyware or viruses that run in the background, I'm talking viruses that focus on knocking the PC out of commission.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    drteknikal (profile), 3 Feb 2005 @ 9:55am

    the 4% solution

    This is bad. Spamming is much cheaper than direct mail, where a 3% return is considered great. So if it's much cheaper, and more effective, I suspect that only 4% of my mail will be legitimate soon.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Stephen Paulger, 3 Feb 2005 @ 6:41pm

      Re: the 4% solution

      That's 4% of the surveryed in their lives have bought from spam. Not that the surveyed respond to 4% of the spam they get. The problem is that it's cheaper for them to get a 0.003% response from 1 million emails than for a 3% response from 1,000 mail-shots.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Precision Blogger, 4 Feb 2005 @ 9:18am

    Find a list of people who buy from spam!

    Spammers MUST make lists of people who actually buy as a result of spam ads. The lists are out there somewhere. Hackers ought to be able to find them!
    - precision blogger

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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