How much does spam cost a business? Google wants businesses owners and the world at large to know, and seeks to aid them with the introduction of the Google Spam Calculator, a fairly simplistic tool intended to demonstrate what it actually costs for a company to sort through spam every day. The goals of Google here are pretty clear – after all, they own Postini, one of the world's biggest anti-spam companies. In fact, they give you a figure at the end that tells you on average how long it would take for Google Message Security once employed to pay for itself in terms of cost savings.

An interesting sales pitch. Some, though, say Google doesn't go far enough with their anti-spam measures. For instance, some of criticized their Gmail service, claiming it can become a haven for spammers. Google certainly isn't in the wrong, though. Independent research all over has come up with many figures that all agree spam costs businesses quite a bit of money – up to $70 billion a year, according to one study.

For all the companies that try, from Google's own Postini to Appriver to numerous others, the fight against spam won't be one with filtering and blacklists – an overhaul of email as we know it is probably the only real answer.