Is the term “Spam” being diluted?

The thing that bothers me most about Dave Winer’s latest brain explosion, is not his outburst against a friend. It’s not his high-horse approach to yet another useful internet startup. It’s not even the condescending nature of his followup. No, it’s the wanton use of the term “Spam” to describe Jason’s presentation, and also the subsequent joking use of that term that Jason noted.

“Spam” should be reserved for those things that really are unsolicited and commercial. Email Spam, search engine Spam, comment Spam. Jason Calacanis is fighting those things with Mahalo, and he should be praised highly for the attempt, regardless of what beef you have with it.

It seems to me that people have decided to live with Spam, to the point of throwing the term around to describe an interesting presentation that has zero impact. You could just walk out. This is Not Good Enough. Spam is such a collossal waste of money and energy. Imagine what the internet would be like without Spam. Get out of the goddamn echo chamber Mr Winer, and do something about Spam. That would be a good place to channel your seemingly undirected enthusiasm.

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  1. I think the term “diluted” implies some kind of social acceptance of the usage. I would hope that most people don’t accept Dave’s use of the term Spam for Jason Calacanis’ presentation — advertising, maybe. Spam, no.

    Posts like yours are helpful to keep words like this honest.

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