A Weblog About Topics and Issues Discussed in the Book Spam Kings by Brian McWilliams

« Dateline tracks down a porn spammer | Main | The mixed message from spam lawsuits »

August 9, 2005

AOL Spammer's Gold Sweepstakes

AOL Hummer contestI had a feeling this might happen. America Online is giving away a pile of booty it seized from spam king Brad Bournival, including $20,000 in gold bars, a 2003 Hummer H2 and $75,000 in cash.

The AOL Spammer's Gold Sweepstakes runs from August 10 through August 19. According to the official rules, the Grand Prize is the Hummer (approximate retail value, $45,000) plus $20,000 in gold bars and $65,000 in cash. AOL is also giving away one daily cash prize of $1,000 to a entrants who answer a trivia question about online security and safety. (There's even a cheesy "Official AOL Spam Patrol" certificate for people who participate each day of the contest!) bournival.jpg

Spam Kings readers know that Bournival bought the yellow Hummer in 2003 with the profits he made selling penis enlargement pills. Both he and partner Davis Hawke were fond of gold; Hawke preferred to bury his in the woods. While Bournival settled the March 2004 lawsuit from AOL earlier this year, Hawke is still on the lam, facing a $12.8M judgment.

AOL members can enter the sweepstakes at AOL Keyword: Spammer's Sweepstakes. Unlike the last time AOL did this (giving away a Porsche Boxter confiscated from a spammer) non-members can also get in on the action.

According to AOL, on one day alone in January 2004, Bournival triggered more than 100,000 complaints from AOL members.

What's Bournival up to now that he's out of the spam trade? He recently won the New Hampshire chess championship. And he claims he's making a pile of money playing online poker.

Posted by brian at August 9, 2005 11:21 PM



Posted by: Paul Feder at August 11, 2005 9:12 AM

I am happy to have 1 less spammer

Posted by: comadoll,theadore at August 12, 2005 10:13 AM

Good job!

Posted by: Mary Schultz at August 12, 2005 11:06 AM

GET EM!!!!!!

Posted by: James Munro at August 12, 2005 11:18 AM

kick em out AOL- thx !

Posted by: Ritva at August 13, 2005 10:42 AM

Getting Spam is alot like getting head lice. It's very annoying and bothersome. AOL is doing more than their share of getting rid of them. Thanks for the good job!
Frank Pyne

Posted by: Frank Pyne at August 15, 2005 9:23 PM

It is about time they have a taste of what happens if you invade in others peoples livesand try to take advantage of them. So keep up the good work. and make them pay for their crimes

Posted by: Paul Vestal at August 17, 2005 2:19 PM

Keep up the good work fighting spam THANK YOU AOL

Posted by: rich at August 19, 2005 12:42 AM

When will the winners be announced,
contest was over 14 days ago, THANKS

Posted by: Alton at September 3, 2005 10:30 PM

My dad entered me into this contest and I found out 2 weeks ago that I won one of the $1,000 daily prizes they were giving away!!

Thanks AOL for kicking back some of the money to your AOL members who were affected by all the spam!!

Posted by: Stacie at September 7, 2005 12:47 PM

seems like everytime you have 1 of these smammer contests the spoils go from 1 rich fool to another im por and im sure alot of people like me didnt win either! what is this a joke????

Posted by: tom stokes at September 9, 2005 9:02 AM

who won the hummer???????????????/

Posted by: john at September 16, 2005 10:17 AM

AOL has named the Grand Prize winner. More info is available here:


Posted by: Brian at September 21, 2005 2:17 PM

You all are during a great job stopping all of the spams. I wouldn't have anyone but AOL.

Posted by: Linda L. Frank at December 28, 2005 12:19 PM


Weblog authors are solely responsible for the content and accuracy of their weblogs, including opinions they express,
and O’Reilly Media, Inc., disclaims any and all liability for that content, its accuracy, and opinions it may contain.

All trademarks and registered trademarks appearing on spamkings.oreilly.com are the property of their respective owners.

O'Reilly Home | Privacy Policy

© 2004 O'Reilly Media, Inc.
For assistance with this site, email: