For better or worse,  Anissa Chan and other Gmail users will never have to click "Display Images Below" again.

Why It May Not Be A Bad Thing That Gmail Will Automatically Display Images In Messages

If you have a Gmail account, you’re more than familiar with opening a commercial e-mail that looks like a strange wireframe with no images. Then you click “Display images below” and the blanks get filled in and (hopefully) it all makes much more sense. Google announced today that it will now automatically load these images, which is a move that has its pros and cons. [More]

The world is full of mysteries.

We Live In A World Where Spam-Flavored Macadamia Nuts Exist

Sometimes it feels like there’s nothing left to look forward to in a food landscape busy spawning franken-pastry hybrids left and right and “reinvented” pizza. But then along comes a product pairing nuts and canned meat and faith in the culinary innovation of the world is restored. [More]

(Raympnd Bryson)

Times used to be, you could laugh at all the ineffectual spam offers piled up behind your email’s filter — “Take that, fake Rolex dealers!” But it’s a whole new beast now that social media is running our electronic lives: A new study says spam on sites like Twitter and Facebook is up 355% in the first half of 2013 alone. We can run, but apparently we just can’t hide. [via Mashable]

Path Texts And Calls Everyone In User’s Address Book About Nonexistent Photos At 6 A.M.

Path Texts And Calls Everyone In User’s Address Book About Nonexistent Photos At 6 A.M.

UPDATE: After seeing this story on Consumerist, a rep for Path wrote me — on my personal e-mail address suggesting I check out Stephen’s updated post and give Path a try for myself… In spite of the fact that Stephen still maintains that he never opted into sharing his address book nor did he have any pictures to share. Thanks, but I’d rather not bother my friends and family with texts at all hours of the morning. [More]

(Dan Zen)

FTC Goes After Spammers Responsible For 180 Million “Free Gift Card” Text Messages

Through eight lawsuits filed in four different U.S. District Courts, the Federal Trade Commission has put the regulatory smackdown on 29 alleged text spammers believed to have blasted out more than 180 million unwanted text messages to consumers. [More]

Gmail Decides That Gmail Messages Are Spam

Gmail Decides That Gmail Messages Are Spam

Checking his spam folder, Richard was a little surprised at the reason that this mail service, Gmail, gave for tossing one message into the junk pile. How did they determine that he probably didn’t want this message? Well, because the return address was Gmail.com, and “[they’ve] found that lots of messages from gmail.com are spam.” [More]

(amyadoyzie)

Spam’s Maker Buys Skippy, We Hope They Don’t Come Up With Any Wacky Combos

Maybe it’s just the refreshing feeling of a brand new year, but this week has already seen a lot of action when it comes to companies buying other companies/brands. Yesterday Avis announced it was buying Zipcar, and today Hormel says it’s handing over $700 million to buy Skippy peanut butter from Unilever. [More]

The Google Algorithm Has Become Self-Aware and Self-Hating

The Google Algorithm Has Become Self-Aware and Self-Hating

Reader golddog has been noticing some unflagged messages/false positives coming from Gmail’s spam filter, but noticed something in his spam box that really, really shouldn’t have been there. It was a message from Google itself, promoting a Google product for sale. The Gmail account that golddog uses on his Android devices flagged this message, naturally, as spam.

[More]

Fifth Third Bank E-Mails Me Every Day. I'm Not A Customer

Fifth Third Bank E-Mails Me Every Day. I'm Not A Customer

Ed gets a daily account alert e-mail from Fifth Third Bank. Keeping up-to-date on your accounts is important, but that seems a little excessive. …Oh. What’s that you say, Ed? You don’t even have an account with Fifth Third Bank? Your e-mail address is associated with someone else’s account and you don’t know how to fix it?

[More]

Hello?

Virgin Mobile Needs Non-Customer’s Personal Information To Stop Spamming her

Someone signed up for Virgin Mobile, and used Shadee’s e-mail address by accident. She doesn’t particularly want someone else’s phone bills, so she contacted Virgin Mobile asking to have the problem resolved. They answered with a demand for her personal information: name, mailing address, and her phone number. Why do they need all of this information when she wants to get off their mailing list, not on it? So she reached out and posted on Virgin Mobile’s Facebook wall. The interactions that followed prove that while companies can assign staff to social media, it can’t make them actually listen to consumers.

[More]

Spammers Using Pinterest Pics To Hide Scammy Links

Spammers Using Pinterest Pics To Hide Scammy Links

Through the evolution of e-mail, the Internet and social media, most of the rules for identifying spam remained the same. The text of a scam e-mail sent on old school AOL isn’t that different from the spam links posted today on Twitter or Facebook. But photo-based social sites like Pinterest are giving nogoodniks a less-familiar way to trick people into clicking.

[More]

4.5 Billion Spam Texts Sent To U.S. Cellphones Last Year

4.5 Billion Spam Texts Sent To U.S. Cellphones Last Year

If you think you’ve seen an uptick in the number of spam texts showing up on your wireless phone in recent months, you’re not crazy. A new report claims that the number of those unwanted messages jumped 45% last year, totaling 4.5 billion texts in the U.S. alone.

[More]

Spam Unites People Around The Globe In Odd Social Experiment

Spam Unites People Around The Globe In Odd Social Experiment

As the saying goes, when life hands you spam, hatch plans with your fellow spamees to create a new social network and otherwise engage in friendly penpal relationships. That might not be a saying yet, but it’s what happened when a spam email spiraled into the land of “reply all,” uniting annoyed people around the globe.

[More]

Some Retailers Realizing That Spamming Current Customers Might Turn Them Into Former Customers

Some Retailers Realizing That Spamming Current Customers Might Turn Them Into Former Customers

In 2011, the nation’s 100 largest online retailers sent out an average to 177 e-mails per recipient, with some companies blasting more than 500 e-mails per recipient. But a handful of businesses are coming to the realization that it may not be the best idea to flood their customers’ inboxes.

[More]

McAfee Promises Peace Of Mind After Turning Users' Computers Into Spammer Paradise

McAfee Promises Peace Of Mind After Turning Users' Computers Into Spammer Paradise

Heeeey, McAfee customer! Would you like some peace of mind? Why, you ask? No reason… well except that spammers were able to exploit a flaw in McAfee’s SaaS Total Protection anti-malware service, making that protection not so total after all.

[More]

How Facebook's Message Spam Filter Lost Me Some Fabulous Prizes

How Facebook's Message Spam Filter Lost Me Some Fabulous Prizes

Think that Facebook’s de facto spam filter couldn’t possibly be keeping anything of consequence out of your inbox? Think again. When James happened to click that unobtrusive “Other” tab on his Facebook inbox, he learned that he had won a new TV, Blu-Ray player, and a copy of the movie the contest was promoting. But Facebook had filed this message away on his behalf….in August 2010.

[More]

Facebook Works To Stop Porn Flood

Facebook Works To Stop Porn Flood

Some Facebook users reportedly suffered a deluge of pornographic and violent images earlier this week due to a hacker-spawned exploit, but the social network says it has the problem under control. The images that flooded accounts’ news feeds allegedly consisted of hardcore porn with celebrity faces pasted in, as well as disturbing images, one of which featured an abused dog. The problem continued for as long as 48 hours before Facebook got a handle on it.

[More]

The "Do You Have This In Stock" Email Scam

The "Do You Have This In Stock" Email Scam

Reader SkokieGuy’s manufacturing company keeps getting these emails asking to buy parts and equipment they don’t even make. The diction is weird and they seem to be using a template. “I know this is a scam,” writes SkokieGuy.”But I can’t figure out why.”

[More]