Are link request emails considered spam? That is the question over at a Search Engine Watch Forum thread named Is Emailing Webmasters For Links Spam?
Lets ask Google; http://www.google.com/search?q=what%20is%20spam.
To indiscriminately send unsolicited, unwanted, irrelevant, or inappropriate messages, especially commercial advertising in mass quantities. Noun: electronic "junk mail".
Are these emails "unsolicited"? Most. Are these emails "unwanted"? Most. Are these emails "irrelevant"? Most. Are these emails "inappropriate"? Depends. Are these emails sent out in "mass quantities"? Many are.
In my opinion, an overwhelming percentage of link request emails are spam.
Forum discussion at Search Engine Watch Forums.