I decided to Bing and Google myself last week, and scrolling through the results was pretty hilarious. Here’s what I found:
– The internet still highly associates me with my husband. The first hit on Bing is a link to our old personal website, mattfaus.com (the link ashleyfaus.com redirects to this site). There’s nothing bad about that site, but I’m a little annoyed that with all my blogging on this site, my LinkedIn profile and Twitter feed, and my posting on Forbes and The Daily Muse, it’s the first thing that comes up. This site hasn’t been updated in over a year, and there’s no linkbacks to it (that I know of, anyways!) Come on, internet, I’ve got my own identity here! I think I need to do some SEO for myself, just to make sure that ConsciouslyCorporate pops up before ashleyfaus.com.
-The web never forgets. I came across a really old interview video that I made back in college, a cast list for last year’s A Christmas Carol, and an article about a play I did in California. Fortunately, these links are several pages back, but keep in mind that when you post stuff online, it never goes away!
– The internets have a mind of their own. I came across one link that took a few random key words from the resume on my blog, and strung them together to come up as a result for the phrase “Starbucks SWOT Analysis”. So, as much as I’ve tried to manage my web presence by putting out content that I deem acceptable, sometimes the internet and internet users will take the information you put out, and twist it.
– There’s more of me than I thought. “Faus” is not a particularly popular name, and since my husband and I are both very active on the web, results for our last name generally link to one of us for the first 2-3 pages of results. But, apparently, I’m also a junior high student and I live in Mount Holly, PA. Of course, we know that these results are not me. My maiden name, “Howard”, was much more common, and several people with my maiden name have committed crimes, posted naughty photos of themselves, or written really terrible comments online. Most of us have at least one person in the world with our name, and we don’t always want our “twin” to pop up when trying to cultivate a professional online identity.
I write this post to ask, “What comes up when you Bing your name? What comes up when you Google your name?” Some people think that it’s better to just stay off the internet altogether. Others think they don’t need to monitor their presence, because they already know what’s out there. I reject both of these thoughts, particularly from a professional standpoint! Potential employers, clients, and business partners will plug your name into a search bar as one of their first means of investigating. Don’t you want to know what they’ll find? More importantly, don’t you want to control what they’ll find? I’m not even a big internet sensation, and my blog is miniscule in relation to the whole web universe. But still, I want to know what happens when you do a search on my name.
So, what crazy results come up on your name? Share your funny links in the comments!