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Spam

[spam]
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Trademark.
  1. a canned food product consisting especially of pork formed into a solid block.
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noun
  1. (lowercase) Digital Technology. disruptive online messages, especially commercial messages posted on a computer network or sent as email (often used attributively): Install spam blocker software and keep your email spam filters updated to protect your accounts from unsolicited spam.
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adjective
  1. (lowercase) Digital Technology. (of promotional content on the Internet) irrelevant or misdirected: The search engine delivered spam websites that had nothing to do with my keywords.
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verb (used with object), spammed, spam·ming.
  1. (lowercase) Digital Technology. to send spam to.
  2. (lowercase) Digital Technology. to execute (an action) or use (an item) rapidly or repeatedly in a video game: Spam the attack button as soon as the fight begins.
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verb (used without object), spammed, spam·ming.
  1. (lowercase) Digital Technology. to send spam.
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Origin of Spam

1937; (def 1) sp(iced) + (h)am1; (other defs.) 1990–95; probably referring to a comedy routine on Monty Python's Flying Circus, British TV series, in which the word Spam is used repeatedly
Related formsspam·mer, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for spammer

spam

verb spams, spamming or spammed
  1. to send unsolicited electronic mail or text messages simultaneously to a number of e-mail addresses or mobile phones
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noun
  1. unsolicited electronic mail or text messages sent in this way
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Derived Formsspammer, noun

Word Origin

C20: from the repeated use of the word Spam in a popular sketch from the British television show Monty Python's Flying Circus, first broadcast in 1969

Spam

noun
  1. trademark a kind of tinned luncheon meat, made largely from pork
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for spammer

spam

n.

proprietary name registered by Geo. A. Hormel & Co. in U.S., 1937; probably a conflation of spiced ham. Soon extended to other kinds of canned meat. In the sense of "Internet junk mail" it was coined by Usenet users after March 31, 1993, when Usenet administrator Richard Depew inadvertently posted the same message 200 times to a discussion group. The term had been used in online text games, and it was from the comedy routine in British TV show "Monty Python's Flying Circus" (beloved by many intellectual geeks) where a restaurant's menu items all devolve into spam.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

spammer in Culture

spam

Unsolicited, undesired e-mail. Also used as a verb. Spam is the e-mail version of junk mail.

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Note

The name comes from a Monty Python comedy skit about a restaurant that served only Spam.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.