For someone born in to the age of technology, I’ve found my digital footprint is fairly low. This is great news considering someone of a young age is arguably safer with less information out there about him or her. This is especially true considering the many websites available for doxing research. In researching myself, I found that nothing was completely invisible even if I intend it to be.
One disturbing example was the fact that my facebook was visible when searched through the Pipl search engine. My settings are applied so that any search is supposedly impossible in finding my page. Only friends and friends of friends may search me in facebook’s own search engine to find me. Knowing how personal this account is, I would not appreciate just anybody being able to find it, however the content on there has nothing incriminating. Using my private social media account to promote a new one with worldly content could be a good way to build a more professional persona. I will be able to stay on top of current events and also build a perception as an activist, passionate about global change. The new account would be public and a part of my online portfolio. It also allows me to refrain from contributing only to ‘repressive forces’ (Lovink 2015 p169) of private, personal media that Lovink suggests is ‘unconscious slavery.’ I find this to be an integral point to bring up. So many of us are preoccupied with how we are liked, yet fail to use social media to build something greater than ourselves that can go further than a personal profile. We use the skills we have to show who we already are, rather than to create and compose what we could become and what we stand for.
According to WebMii.com, my online visibility score is a 2.04/10. This means I am more visible than only 12% of the online population. However this poses conflict with the industry I aim to work for. Public Relations is about connections and being informed of what’s current and how to adapt. It is part of the job description to be able to establish yourself and network independently. Social media centres around the idea that ‘contacts mutate into comrades’(Lovink 2015 p166), which is why I have centred my mind map around five social medias and two other avenues. Ling’s laws of mind mapping claim to ‘greatly enhance your left and right brain cognitive skills’(Ling 2016 p92), which I have found to be true. It is easier to search a page with pictures and colours and format rather than paragraphs of text. It is also easier to form connections between information. Data is only useful if it is sorted.
I thought it clever to be able to visually compare my current profile to my future profile by splitting the page in to two sections. This clearly shows me what is lacking. My current writing and journalistic portfolio is non-existent, although I do have content to spread. Being new to twitter, I have decided the exercise is worthwhile and it was interesting to be able to figure out what I thought was already working well and what I should continue.
‘Social-as-electronic-empathy’(Lovink 2015 p178) is a good way to look at gaining popularity and space online. These were my thoughts around all my ideas. If I am now marketing myself instead of presenting myself, I need to appeal to emotions and create behavioural changes. To do this, I have kept the ‘soft sell’ approach in mind for these mediums, as I personally believe humans are ultimately driven by emotion. I believe we create logic after we are cued by our gut instincts.
I also attempted to ‘associate…new ideas with old ideas…to become exceptionally creative’ (Ling 2016 p90). This is seen by connecting periscope, medium and writing, to build a separate identity. People don’t seem to use them in conjunction, but I may have edge as a writer if I can deliver on both professional and casual platforms. This will be a skill that needs practice for creating the online magazine for Toorak College. You are appealing to different age groups, so tone and relevancy must change accordingly. In my internship, I have decided to adopt the approach that ‘somebody has already solved your problem somewhere’ (Ling 2016 p96). So instead of starting with the plan, I researched. Lisa Messenger’s magazine for female entrepreneurs provided a fresh and young framework as inspiration for the website. Through this exercise, a strong benefit has been the simplistic way to see where I am and where I am headed in the online world.
Lovink, Geert 2015, ‘What is Social in Social Media?’, eflux journal, Sternberg Press, Berlin, pp.162-183 (PDF)
Ling, P. (2016) Be the innovators: How to accelerate team creativity. Australia: OUP Australia and New Zealand.