Why is Spam Bad?

Spam is bad for a number of reasons. It's annoying, it wastes time, it misuses resources, it's an invasion of privacy, it costs internet users money, it's annoying (worth repeating).

Email Spamming costs its victims much more than it costs its senders.
In order to initiate a spam message and vicitmize thousands (or millions) of internet users, a spammer simply requires a connection to the internet and a mail server from which to launch their assault. There are no further advertising fees and no additional costs to the spammer. The vicitms of spam pay much more than the spammers themselves who receive a "free ride."

For the end recipients of spam, their time, patience, and resources are wasted dealing with unsolicited email advertisements. Any recipient with measured phone service (paying by time online), is being directly charged for the amount of time they spend receiving, reading, and processing their emails. Thus, their time spent dealing with spam has an easily quantifiable monetary amount.

For ISPs, and companies running web and mail servers, and intermediary systems, the cost of spam is also very real. For these parties, bandwidth usage, CPU time, and storage space all come at a cost. When these company's resources are needless clogged by swarms of spam messages, not only does their overall system performance suffer, but they are in effect paying for these messages to propagate throughout the internet. Managers and administrators of these companies also have a great deal of their time wasted dealing with undeliverable spam messages, and with complaints from spam recipients accusing them of aiding spammers.

As the volume of spam increases, the internet becomes polluted and less useful.
when the amount of spam on the internet increases, email becomes less useful. As the volume of spam received by an email account becomes too large, the usefulness of this email account is degraded. Once the spam gets to be at the level of hundreds per day (levels that are being experienced already), the email account has been virtually destroyed. With the threat of spam in the back of everyone's minds, internet users are becoming increasingly guarded with their email addresses. While this is a smart practice, as the level of paranoia increases, people are becoming afraid to give out their email addresses to anyone. This may result in losses for ecommerce websites and a reduction in the usefulness of the internet as a whole since people are unwilling to fill-out online forms for fear of being targeted by spammers.

Email Spamming often contains fraudulent, deceptive, and worthless content.
Spam is often used to advertise fake or misleading products and services that are not worth promoting by any other medium. Spam messages prey on the inexperienced, weak minded, or naive internet user who may be easily tricked into purchasing faulty products. Spam advertising is often created by con-artists selling bogus products such as get rich quick schemes, or self-improvement products. Rarely will a spam-promoted product ever deliver on any of the promises it makes.

Some Spamming May be Illegal.
Spam software is intended to run on provider's servers against their usage policies and to avoid detection. Some spams are designed to trick people into giving out their credit card information which is then abused by the spammers (this is considered credit card fraud). Furthermore, spam containing sexually harrassing, or child-pornographic material has begun to surface around the internet. These practices are both alarming and illegal.