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For the purposes of the SpamBouncer, spam is defined as unsolicited bulk email (UBE). To be spam, an email must be both unsolicited and bulk, not just one or the other.
An email that is both unsolicited and bulk is spam regardless of its content. The vast majority of spam is commercial bulk email -- email that tries to sell a product or service. However, email that contains other content, such political advertisements, religious messages and/or charitable solicitations, is also spam if it is bulk and unsolicited. As anti-spammers have been saying for years, "It's not about content; it's about consent."
See the SpamHaus definition of spam for an excellent description of what is spam and what is not spam.
* You can solicit email in a number of ways:
This does NOT mean that any email whatsoever from a person or company you once contacted is solicited email. If you email a question to a company's sales department, you asked for a one-time, personal reply and should expect to receive that. If the company adds you to a marketing email list because you contacted them with a question, email from the marketing list is unsolicited. If you ask to be put on an email list that covers a certain topic, email you receive from that list on that topic is solcited. If you receive email from that list but on a different topic, that email is unsolicited.
If you ask for email from a specific person or company, and receive email from another person or company, that email is unsolicited unless the email sender is representing the company or person you originally asked to hear from. A person or company can legitimately hire someone else to manage their bulk email lists (or outsource their bulk email lists). Unless they ask for and get your permission first, however, they cannot give or sell your name or email address to another person or company so that the other company can send you email -- any such email is unsolicited.
A responsible bulk emailer will also normally verify that you really want to be on a bulk email list before putting you on that list. The most commonly accepted form of verification is to send an email to the subscriber's email address, asking the subscriber to reply or to click a specific web link. That way, the bulk emailer knows that the person who receives email at that email address really did ask to be put on that bulk email list. This process is called confirmed opt-in (COI), or sometimes double opt-in by email marketers.
+ "Nearly the same" means emails that are "personalized" using the recipient's name or email address, and perhaps with different Subject headers, but that are otherwise identical. An email that contains your name at the top, but that is otherwise identical to email sent to many other people, is bulk. An email that contains a random Subject header, but that is otherwise identical to a bunch of other emails with random Subject headers, is bulk. An email created specifically for you and sent to you only is not bulk, regardless of its content.