One of the oldest original marketing channels around is the email.  Back in 1972, Ray Tomlinson sent the first email as a test message to himself.  This email went from one computer to another one that sat right next to it at a Cambridge, Massachusetts lab.  But these days, email email is celebrating its 40th birthday.

In regards to content found in many emails these days, you’ll find spam.  A lot of it.  A simple Google search will tell us that Gary Thuerk is the progenitor of spam.  Gary Thuerk worked in marketing and sales for Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC), which has, since then, become defunct.  In 1978, Gary wanted to announce a product, but due to the cost and time it took to print things on a physical medium, he came up with the idea to notify people on ARPANET.

This email ended up being the first case of breaking the internet.  Because he was the first one to do something like this, and seeings how storage was tiny compared to storage these days, Gary was admonished for the stunt.  He was told that if it happened again, he’d be barred from ARPANET, since it wasn’t a public resource back then.

[Read more about the beginnings of email on Marketing Land]

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