Recently, I was informed about spam emails, but I do not understand the difference between spam and direct mail.

Googling a bit gave this result. But I am still confused.

Can a simple description of a software, its features, and a link to its download be considered spam?

I did not use any bots or special software to ask this question. Just Safari browser.

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    Are you talking about spam here on security.stackexchange? Or wondering what email spam is in general / what is considered email spam? – crovers Oct 12 '16 at 15:57
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    Your previous question was closed because it appeared to be an advertisement for a product disguised as a question. – schroeder Oct 12 '16 at 17:29
  • @schroeder, I am not the product developer, its GPL and hardly can be called a product. If you think that features was not relevant to the question you might edit the question ant throw it away or ask me to consider to do this. This was really strange to see for me because RetroShare is not a product. It is GPL software. And I do not receive any money for this software. Just mentioned its features because it was relevant to a reason why it was the option I have choosen. Can it be edited? – Sergei Oct 13 '16 at 13:25
  • @crovers, it was asked because of security.stackexchange but I prefer to leave questions generic if possible for better applicability. – Sergei Oct 13 '16 at 13:27
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    @Sergei Spam doesn't have to be about financial gain. Promoting a free project also classifies as advertisement. – schroeder Oct 13 '16 at 13:34

The main difference is permission. Spam emails (or unsolicited emails) are sent without any permission, and are generally evocative in some way.

Direct emails are those that, while resembling spam in some ways, are sent to you with your permission. They generally inform you of a new product, event, or look to gain some sort of information for statistical purposes that have to do with a service you subscribe to.

While you may not recall giving a certain company/service your permission, this permission may have been given during an application installation, or through a web-forum registration, for example. With direct mail, they will generally give you the option to decide whether or not you wish to receive emails from their sales/marketing teams, before or after the fact.

Direct mail = not bad, received with permission, can be annoying.

Spam = malicious, received without permission, annoying.

As a little addendum, if you are referring to direct mail in the sense of physical mail, like that your neighborhood postal worker would deliver, the differences are obvious, and have nothing to do with security (unless you've got a nasty war-driving postal worker in your area).

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    A good word to use is "unsolicited mail" – grochmal Oct 12 '16 at 16:09

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