PCWorld article states that China dropped further down on the list of top SPAM originating countries, down to #20.
With now 470 million internet users, China is actually cleaning up the cyberspace of SPAM substantially. US, however, remains #1 top SPAMMER in the world, contributing about 15% of all SPAM’s in cyberspace.
Sophos, which collects the stats, approximates that 97% of all emails received on business computer systems are SPAM.
But some emails on business systems are considered SPAM, but also “advocacy”. A few years ago, Intel Corporation lost a major lawsuit in US against a former employee’s “anti-Intel” website, which Intel claimed was spamming the Intel computer systems with mass emails to employees, costing Intel large amount of money to filter out the mass emails.
Which brings an interesting question? What is the boundary between “Advocacy” and “SPAM”? If you ask me, not much.
“Europe overtook Asia for the sheer volume of spam being generated, reported Sophos. Today, 35% of all spam arrives via European PCs, followed by computers in Asia (30.9%), North America (18.9%), South America (11.5%), and Africa (2.5%).”
“Indeed, according to security firm Sophos, which released the study, in the second quarter of 2010, 15.2% of all global spam messages emanated from the United States, an increase from the 13.1% seen in the first quarter of 2010. Rounding out the top five list of global spam-generating countries were India (7.7%), Brazil (5.5%), the United Kingdom (4.6%), and South Korea (4.2%).”
In the era of Facebook and Twitter (and emails) causing revolutions rippling around the world, People and governments are increasingly turning to the internet as a mean to get the message out, or “advocate” their positions.
But whatif, people don’t want to be bombarded by would-be humanitarian do-gooders? Whatif my business don’t want to have to spend money to fend off junk emails from NGO’s or even disgruntled ex-employees?
“Advocacy” online are similar to “SPAM”, (or sometimes are), because they
(1) Markets somethings, product or service or even just an idea, for profit or without.
(2) From origins unknown or hidden, with assumed named organizations and individuals, whose true identity cannot be ascertained online.
(3) no guarantees of any kind. You don’t know.
(4) no privacy protection. If you engaged with the “Advocate” online, how do you know they are not just collecting your personal information for something else? How do you know they are not government spies keeping tabs on you and your friends? How do you know that they are not foreign agents trying to dig secrets out of you? (Even US government employees have policies NOT to engage with unknown people online regarding government business).
In this respect, I think China has it right. Internet Censorship may prove to be the right course, and the Chinese Great Firewall may become something to be proud of.
It is not a war against information freedom, but a war against SPAM and SPAMMERS.
Democracy is not a new idea. If one wants to learn about them, there are mountains of books in libraries all over China that one can read from.
Continuing to “advocate” the same old messages, is just SPAM, unwanted junk emails and digital messages.
Maybe, that is another reason why Chinese internet economy just grew another 50% in 2010? The Great Firewall, in FACT, did not stifle internet business (as some in the West predicted).
I would argue that the Great Firewall, with its selective filters, got rid of much SPAM and scams for legitimate businesses, and made things better.
And for the hacker interests, SPAMs carry a lot of viruses from hackers. That means, US (and many other democracies) are responsible for majority of the hackers in cyberspace.