My theory about email spammers.
Now that everyone has their email on one of about 5 large, centralized, corporate email servers, we hardly ever see spam emails.
But there are people who still send email spam. This is a puzzle. The usual hypothesis is that it only takes 0.001% reply rate for a spammer to make money, because spamming externalizes most of the costs of advertising to those being advertised to - spammer’s don’t have to pay for disk space, half the cost of transmitting their ad, or any other expense that advertisers usually incur to get their ads in front of people.
Currently, the people fighting spam are smarter than the spammers, so even with the costs of advertising externalized, email spamming has to be a money losing exercise. This isn’t a rational “economic man” situation, and it requires a new hypothesis.
I think spammers are simple psychopaths. They’re paying to inflict pain on random people. We’ve set up a world where the internet using populace gets filtered, and only the very worst people end up sending email spams.