There was a discussion on a forum I read about whether it's spam to send emails to your customers who haven't opted-in to a newsletter. There was talk about whether it's legal or not, whether it's moral or not and so on. This rapidly diverged into a big morass of ethical mumbo-jumbo. I typed the following comment, but decided it was just too preachy and unrelated to put there. I wanted to share it anyway though. I'm not a preachy, self-righteous hippy (I'm a quiet, reserved hippy!), however this sounds, so I hope you're not horrified.
I will always be one of the people trying to save the world, because we have to. You can't just leave it to people who are stronger than you. I believe, personal philosophy, that I should apply to my every decision the concept of "what would the effect be if everyone on Earth decided this the way I did?" (don't try applying it to the details though... if everyone on Earth flushed their toilet at the same moment you did, there'd be a BIG problem) - so I use less energy, I don't eat meat, I recycle, I let people in in traffic, and I don't get in other peoples' faces electronically or actually. No, not everyone will do that (not everyone will even agree what's best for the world!), and I'm not even in ICBM distance of perfect, but I am one tiny part of the prevention of armageddon, and an example for other people, and at the end of the day I go to bed knowing that I did less harm than I could have (maybe not less harm than good, but I'm trying, and being a human being in the USA, you're always doing some pretty serious harm to the world). It's a more comfortable life for me. And as my philosophy says... if everybody did it, the world would be saved!
PS - in regards to spam, I believe in sending nothing unsolicited, because I make business decisions with this filter: "How would I want to be treated by a company?" - and I HATE the spam that floods my inbox.