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In the digital context, Spam refers refers to unethical or deceptive practices used to manipulate search engines or flood users with unwanted content. This can include sending unsolicited emails (often advertising or even fraudulent in nature), creating low-quality content, or using black hat SEO techniques on websites, blogs, and forums. This practice is viewed negatively by both users and search engines and can damage a brand’s reputation as well as result in various types of penalties, including loss of visibility in search results or complete removal from the index.

The term “spam” originates from a 1970s comedy sketch by the British group Monty Python, in which the canned meat product SPAM is repeatedly mentioned to the point of absurdity: from there, the word became emblematic of the repetitive and unwanted sending of messages, particularly via email, that inundate users to the point of overpowering desired communications.

The practice of spam began in the early 1990s with the rise of the Internet and email communications: one of the first documented cases of spam occurred in 1994 when two lawyers, Laurence Canter and Martha Siegel, sent an advertising message to thousands of newsgroups, prompting a widespread negative reaction.

As the Web has evolved, spam has also spread in other forms, such as comments in blogs, forums, and social media. According to the most recent statistics, spam continues to account for a significant percentage of global email traffic, and security reports indicate that more than 45 percent of emails sent can be classified as spam. In the context of search engines, Google reported that in 2020 alone, its systems detected 40 billion pages containing spam every day, implementing sophisticated algorithms such as SpamBrain to filter and reduce the visibility of content considered spam.