Just Google Me

My interest was captured by this reference from Stephen Downes to a Christoper Sessums' post where Christopher related a fascinating tale about an intriguing twitter exchange with Don Tapscott. I'm not so much interested in the controversy of this 140 character word swap as the simple statement Don gave to Chris in one of his tweets - "... Google me. Don Tapscott..."

I'm still not sure who or where I first heard the idea of offering a Google search of one's name as a form of presence and credibility - it was either Leigh Blackall or Alexander Hayes who suggested that their perfect business card would simply have their online blended lowercase name (google:leighblackall OR google:alexanderhayes) on it. The free ranger vs the DIY domain guru - where does Christopher's nemesis fit?

Or is just a good example of Will Richardson's clickability?

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9 thoughts on “Just Google Me

  1. Graham Wegner

    Thanks, Alex – I did look at that post when writing this little observation up but thought there was something even more specific citing the Google:alexanderhayes business card idea. It could have been in a Skype conversation or buried in some comments somewhere on one of your various web incarnations. Interestingly, no matter what one thinks of a person like Don Tapscott from a business background playing in the education webosphere, being open enough to be Google-able is a definite step embracing networked reality – plenty of gurus and “experts” are near invisible on the web.

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  3. Graham Wegner

    @Tim I wonder what the employers do if the search turns up nothing. And what would one find if we “google” our own departmental leaders? A bunch of links to PR spin or quotes in the media?

  4. Dean Groom

    “I pinged his Whufflie a few times, and noticed that it was climbing steadily upward as he accumulated more esteem from the people he met.” – Down and out in the Magic Kingdom.

    The metaverse is, to my view, delivering increased ways to measure and acquire personal capital. Even if you think your are uber, and have attained high-levels of skill – you still have to work on your reputation points – and these days that means being relevant to to a group – and doing your part to negotiate and help the group attain it’s goals. HR has little idea of this, and I agree, Google Me is a great response, but LinkedIn and FriendFeed are increasingly useful in understanding the ethics, motivation and interests of people.

    In the next couple of weeks I’m hiring 2 EdTechs to support Uni-staff – guess what I’ll be looking for … relevance and evidence of last week, not just last year. Spot on (again)

  5. Leigh Blackall

    I’m certain it was me, long before Alex 🙂 Alex coined the term free ranging to describe the ethic I use, but going by his continued attempts to get me to take more “responsibility” over my presence – I don’t think he fully embraces that ethic himself – and so it follows that he doesn’t fully embrace the “google me” idea either, because he thinks we still a domain…

    Here are the search results:

    Alexander Hayes
    Leigh Blackall

    What I can see from Alex’s result is that he has more control over the results through the use of a central domain… so long as Alex keeps paying the bills, or the business that give him the domain keeps going, and that domain exists.

    For me, its a kind of feedback. I can see through my results where I stand, and what is seen to represent me most of all, and what I need to do to change or control that… but I get plenty of feedback to say it is hard to pin point what, where or who I am.

    One last comment, is that my name doesn’t really need a domain because as yet there are no other Leigh Blackall’s online.

  6. alexanderhayes

    I cant recall coining ” free-ranging” however I can remember the transition from a web 1.0 existence to that of someone else taking control of the back-end and giving me the front end to concentrate on.

    Leigh taught me a lot about how to let go of the preciousness of the content and concentrate more on the interaction with others and from that I have gained much.

    I suppose I straddle both areas – I have “free ranging” ethos behaviors and others which tend to be about maintaining skills and a central point from where to base myself from.

    Leigh’s assertion that it’s a user-pays point of presence is true. If the domain expires then so do I……except that I’m spread from here to the end of a very big sandwich and some parts wont go away no matter what I try 🙂


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