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internet firsts

11 internet firsts you probably never heard of

The first photo ever uploaded to the internet, the first registered domain name… let’s step back into the internet’s history.

FOR PEOPLE OF a certain age, it can seem like the the internet always existed.

For those of us who are a little more, how shall we put this, mature, we remember life before the World Wide Web.

But how many remember all the firsts that came with it? Here’s some of the more interesting ones…

The first… picture uploaded to the internet

Was… an image of a comedy band called Les Horrible Cernettes. And the person who uploaded it? None other than the man who invented the World Wide Web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee.

The first… email sent

Was… sent by Ray Tomlinson – to himself – in 1971. “The test messages were entirely forgettable… Most likely the first message was QWERTYIOP or something similar,” he said.

The first… spam email

We can blame the Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (ARPANET) – the first network to implement TCP/IP – for the first spam email, that was sent to 393 people on 3 May, 1978.

(Monitor screen showing email spam mailbox – Shutterstock)

The first… domain name ever registered

Was… The date? March 15, 1985.

The first… online banner ad

Was… created by Joe McCambley. It went live in October 1994 on, and it promoted seven art museums.

The first… item sold on eBay (then called AuctionWeb)

Was… a broken laser pointer for $14.83 in 1995. The man who bought it told founder Pierre Omidyar he collected broken laser pointers.

The first… book bought on Amazon

Was… Douglas Hofstadter’s Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies: Computer Models of the Fundamental Mechanisms of Thought in 1995.

Try saying that five times fast.

The first… sentence uttered on Skype

Was… in Estonian in April 2003 by a member of the development team. It was “Tere, kas sa kuuled mind?” or “Hello, can you hear me?” in English.

The first… person of Facebook

Was… Mark Zuckerberg, who was given ID number four. The first three Facebook accounts were test accounts.

The first… YouTube video

Was… posted by co-founder Jawed Karim at the San Diego Zoo. It was uploaded on April 23, 2005 and has been watched over 10 million times.


The first… tweet

Was… written by co-founder Jack Dorsey on March 21, 2006.

- Alyson Shontell

Read: 11 ways social media is ruining your life >

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