Tag Archives: online reputation

My Online Persona is not Illegal

Here’s my visual online persona.  What does that mean?  Personas is a component of the Metropath(ologies) exhibit, currently on display at the MIT Museum by the Sociable Media Group from the MIT Media Lab. It uses sophisticated natural language processing and the Internet to create a data portrait of one’s aggregated online identity. In short, Personas shows you how the Internet sees you.


Get yours now


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Maintaining Your Own Online Reputation Management Program

Let’s be honest. Who hasn’t  made an obscene gesture or two or had a wild night where the night cap “smart drink” was a dumb idea. We’ve all had our moments we wished we could forget. Only in these times with pocket-sized high-technology it’s very easy not only for these forgettable occurrences to be remembered, but captured and shared.

I’m fortunate to work and learn from a company that takes reputation seriously. In fact, FORTUNE and other reputation polls have found FedEx to have a very favorable reputation. This does not all happen by accident. It starts with a very competent and ethical executive committee that fosters a culture of pride and motivation to do the right thing for customers and colleagues. Couple that with a great deal of research to understand consumer sentiment and—in a nutshell—you have yourself a pretty successful reputation management program.

Now for yourself, there are plenty of ways for you to get your own personal brand in a bit of trouble and put you in the reactive mode versus the proactive position to engage in community and demonstrate your brilliance.

I started down this road of thinking about personal brand by following a university professor in Canada on Twitter who looks to educate her students on their own online reputation. @melmcbride has recently posted some pretty insightful thoughts about online reputation management for students and I thought why not take a look at what professionals should be thinking about and considering.

First things first, get a LinkedIn account, or Plaxo. I personally see LinkedIn as a virtual business card rolodex that is updated not by me, but by my contacts. And depending on the way they update their profile and by who recommends them, I’m able to get a good look at how lucky I am to know them. LinkedIn allows you to communicate your career and easily educate anyone you meet at conferences, events or even inside your own company about who you actually are.

Second, with the lines between professional and personal worlds colliding Facebook or MySpace accounts are becoming widely accepted inside the confines of the cubeland. I’m amazed at how many of my immediate and not-so immediate colleagues are on Facebook and how – okay no rolling your eyes – closer we’ve become because of it. No longer do you have to wait until Monday to see how everyone’s weekend was, but instead when Monday rolls around you want details of why the refrigerator blew up or why you were on another plane to NYC or how did 20 screaming kids make it into your backyard.

The third recommendation is to get a place of your own to share unique thoughts and ideas. For me it’s Twitter and this blog. I believe if you are even going to try to talk about new, social, digital media you should be participating.

Just today I saw this quote come across in my Twitter feed, “Having a Facebook page does not make you a SM expert.” Need strategies and goals.. “It’s still business.” -Larry Lawfer.

Plus it provides you a way to get all the thoughts out on paper that you have throughout the day and share with a collection of friends and professionals to further the ideas and mature the thought process.

You may be asking why haven’t you mentioned YouTube? Because I don’t look good on video and my family looks better, but you don’t want to see them buying donuts. Why not Flickr? Flickr is great, but my wife has the eye for photography in this family.

All this to say that if you participate in any or all of the forums mentioned above you’re putting yourself out there. And in some cases, bringing your family along for the ride. Which is why it’s very important for you to carefully understand what you want your personal brand to be.

We all remember the bank intern who posted pictures of his Halloween tricks and treats after telling his boss he was going home to be with family

It’s not just athletes and celebrities who get tagged in photos behaving badly and blasted on the internet, it can be you too. I’m a big believer in the idea of if it’s digital, it’s not controlled. Remember you have no control of who’s taking photos or video or you, but you do have control of the most important brand—yourself.

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