Spam, the bane of all our lives, is 30 years old on 3 May according to New Scientist magazine this week.

Nearly 30 years ago, Gary Thuerk, a marketer at Digital Equipment Corporation, emailed 393 users of Arpanet, the US-government owned network that was the predecessor to the internet.

Thuerk therefore holds the questionable award for being the first email spammer in the history of the human race.

Yeah, nice one Gary!

BV and AV

"A quick glance at the oldest archived messages reveals an early watershed that divides spam into two periods - 'BV' and 'AV'. That's before and after Viagra,” claims New Scientist’s Tom Simonite.

Some people, for whatever reasons, have even archived all of the spam they have received in their lifetimes.

Head over to Paul Wouter's, Bruce Guenter's and Richard Jones's archives if you should really want a more thorough 'cultural history' of spam.

Spam Poetry

You can also check out the Spam Poetry Institute for your favourite examples of word salad.

No doubt various malware companies will be taking this opportunity to tout their wares next week.