I remember the first time I ever did a Google search on myself. My brother who lived in another state called me up and asked what connection I had with a certain company. It took me off guard because I had just started doing some contract work with the company in question. After I filled him in with what I was up to, I asked him how he found out about me working with this company. He told me he had done a Google search on our last name and it came up. I was curious and had never done a search on myself so I gave it a try. I was kind of shocked with I found. I found my name attached to a state government website that I never knew about in regards to a company I had not worked for in almost a year. I found directories with my name on them with the wrong information posted. I was really surprised to see that since my name is not common at all and I have never found another Phillip with the same spelling of the last name. It also turned out that the website my brother found me on was not what I had thought. This guy that I was doing a little work with had me posted on his website making it look like I worked for him, which was not the case and the website was half business and half religion and the religious content on the website was close to being considered flaming it was go aggressive. Needles to say I was not happy about my personal image on line.
In one of my first classes in the Internet Marketing degree program I am currently in we learned about online images and how important it is to make sure that it shows us in the light that we chose to be seen in. Since then I have worked very hard to make sure my online image is a good and positive one. In preparing to write this post I once again did a Google search on myself. The first couple of pages that came up were all about me and most of it was by me. Most of the first page is taken up with social media profiles for the various social channels I am on such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to name a few. The first page also shows my blog, which is just the way I want it. My blog is all about my studies and professional experiences in Internet Marketing. The communication on my blog is definitely meant to be a self-expressing message. Think of my blog as well as my YouTube channel as a portfolio of my knowledge and skills in areas of digital marketing that I want people interested in my services to see. So I am very happy with the search results that showed up.
Doing a Google image search did not bring up quite the crafted results page like the web search did. The image search has my profile pictures from my social media profiles and shows some of my friends and family, images form videos I have created and posted online, or at least the first half of the results page was that way; I will get to the rest in just a moment. Looking at the top part of the page, if you knew me well and followed my work you would be able to interpret the information and of course my personal interpretation of the information will be very different and make sense to me but will be harder to understand if you don’t know who I am.
The rest of the pictures are more random and even I can’t say how they ended up on a search for my name. Now, if I being honest with the results, I did find quite a few mug shots of people I do not know. I didn’t like see these images in a search on my name because of the negative stereotype such pictures have. I don’t think these results have a derogatory effect on my image, however looking at the image results page I think I need to do some more work on what shows up. To this point I have not posted a lot of pictures online nor on any of my social media profiles, but that’s about to change so I can have more control over what people will find when searching for me online. For the most part I am happy how I come across online and will do what I can to keep that way or to even make it better.
Flaming: Inappropriately aggressive messages that would not typical be said face-to-face.