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Alternate meanings of spam

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The term “spamming” is also used in the older sense of something repetitious and disruptive by players of various video games, most often first-person shooters or fighting games. For shooters, it refers to “area denial” tactics—repeatedly firing rockets or other explosive shells into an area—or to any tactic whereby a large volume of ammunition is expended in the hope of either scoring chance hits, covering teammates’ advance with suppressive fire, or clearing or defending an area from an enemy presence. In fighting games, spamming most often refers to overuse of particularly powerful moves, especially if they are easy to execute.

Whether such tactics are viewed as cheating or abusive varies from game to game, community to community. Analogous to camping, the tactical advantage gained by those thus engaged is the crux of the issue. If every player defensively “spams”, and no one makes the offensive push, there will be no opportunities for players to come into conflict, and thus there will be no game. Games like Capture the Flag help to break this deadlock by providing incentive to invade enemy territory, however risky.

Conversely, the same term may be used to describe those who flood the in-game chat with needlessly profuse and/or frequent messaging, similar to messaging spam mentioned above. Although perceptions vary within the gaming community, in most arenas excessive messaging is unwelcome. On the other hand, in the role-playing games MUD, MUSH, and MUCK, players happily continue using the word in this original sense, with no implication of abuse. When a player returns to the terminal after a brief break to find his or her screen wonderfully filled with pages of random chat, it’s still called “spam”. [13]

SPAM could also be taken to mean a set of humorous English backronyms, including: Short/Stupid/Silly Particularly/Pointless Annoying Messages, Self-Promotional Advertising Material, Self Propelled Automatic Mail, Send Post All Members, Sending Persistently Annoying Mail, and Shit Posing As Mail.

This guide is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia.

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