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Elevating our Spam

Elevating our Spam
culture
Scott Lachut, PSFK Labs
  • 9 january 2009

No matter how many enhanced levels of security are put in place by our email providers, the pervasiveness of our online activities have made spam a way of life.  By this point, we’ve all received messages that run the gamut from financial scams sent from far away lands telling of untold wealth to countless offers for life-changing pharmaceuticals that promise to cure every ill imaginable, but despite its best attempts to overwhelm us with sheer volume, it’s hard to imagine anyone actually falling for any of it these days.  So as we’ve evolved as savvy web surfers, why hasn’t our spam?  Perhaps it lacks sophistication and intrigue in its message for the simple fact that no one thought to provide an educational guide before, until now.  

As both an homage to and a send-up of “The Elements of Style,” Strunk and White’s quintessential volume on grammar and writing, Jason Roeder offers a comedic primer on elevating our junk mail to new heights with his piece “The Elements of Spam.”  An excerpt follows below (please note that some of the material covered is of a mature nature):

11. A participial phrase at the beginning of a sentence must refer to the grammatical subject.

Upon receiving this couppon, the free iPOds will greet you!

The introductory phrase modifies you, not iPOds; therefore, it is necessary to recast the sentence.

Upon receiving this couppon, you will be greeted by the free iPOds!

Or, better still (see Rule 14).

This couppon entitles you to greetings from the free iPOds!

  [via McSweeney’s]

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