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For the airborne communications relay and gateway, see BACN.

Bacn (pronounced like bacon) is email that has been subscribed to and is therefore solicited (unlike email spam, which is unsolicited), but is often not read by the recipient for a long period of time, if at all. Bacn has been described as "email you want but not right now."[1][2]

Bacn differs from spam in that the recipient has signed up to receive it. Bacn is also not necessarily sent in bulk. Some examples of common bacn messages are news alerts, periodic messages from e-merchants from whom one has made previous purchases, messages from social networking sites, and wiki watch lists.[3]

The name bacn is meant to convey the idea that such email is "better than spam, but not as good as a personal email".[4] It was originally coined in August 2007 at PodCamp Pittsburgh 2,[5] and since then has been used amongst the blogging community.

The word has also attracted attention in the professional email marketing community. A March 2011 diagram from claims that over 27 billion bacn emails were sent every day in 2010.[6]


  1. ^ "PodCamp Pittsburgh 2 cooks up Bacn". PodCamp Pittsburgh. August 23, 2007. Archived from the original on 30 March 2010. Retrieved 2010-03-15. 
  2. ^ Barrett, Grant (2007-12-23). "All We Are Saying". New York Times. Retrieved 2007-12-24. Bacn: Impersonal e-mail messages that are nearly as annoying as spam but that you have chosen to receive: alerts, newsletters, automated reminders etcetera. Popularised at the PodCamp conference in Pittsburgh in August. 
  3. ^ Email overload? Try Priority Inbox - Google Gmail Blog, 30 Aug 2010
  4. ^ NPR: Move Over, Spam: 'Bacn' Is the E-Mail Dish du Jour
  5. ^ "PCPGH invented BACN". Viddler. October 16, 2008. Retrieved 2011-03-23. 
  6. ^ Why Your Email Inbox Is Bringing Home the Bacon [INFOGRAPHIC]

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