A discredited old yarn resurfaces about who 'invented' email - 2014-09-04
It continues: "Email wasn't created, with a massive research budget, in big institutions like the ARPANET, MIT or the military....Email was created in the heart of inner city Newark, NJ, at a relatively small institution, with little to no funding."
This all would be heartwarming -- if it were true, that is.
But it's not true. The story has been retailed for years by its putative hero, the then-14-year-old V.A. Shiva Ayyadurai, who today has several advanced degrees from MIT on his resume and works as an entrepreneur.
Over the years, Ayyadurai's claim been swallowed by numerous publications, including the Washington Post, the New York Times and even The Tech, the student newspaper at MIT. They all ended up running retractions. (Patrick Pexton, who defended the original piece as the Post's then-ombudsman, had to run his own separate retraction.)