Infographic: The most hated Internet innovations

Did you know the inventor of pop-up ads intended them to be less disruptive than those embedded on home pages? Read on for more secrets behind the Internet’s most annoying inventions.

Pop-up ads. Spam. Cookies.

These little annoyances—and many more—are all over the Internet, and have been for a long time. They’re second nature to us now, but someone had to invent them.

An infographic by lists seven of the most hated Internet innovations—and the people who invented them.

Here are three:

1. Pop-up ads: Ethan Zuckerman intended pop-ups ads to be an advertising method that was less disruptive than ads embedded on Web pages. However, 70 percent of people say irrelevant pop-ups are the most annoying type of online ad.

2. Spam: Gary Thuerk sent the first spam email to 393 people in 1978. He was trying to advertise a new computer. Although he made a few sales, most people disliked the email. As of 2011, roughly 90 percent of all emails were spam.

3. Cookies: Lou Montulli created cookies for Netscape in 1994. Cookies tell a website whether a user has visited the website before. Though this information is helpful for websites, it eats away at users’ privacy. Eighty-six percent of Internet users try to hide their digital activity, which includes clearing cookies.

Check out the infographic for more:

(View a larger image.) ​

COMMENT Daily Headlines

Sign up to receive the latest articles from directly in your inbox.