Thursday, 7 July 2011

CPD23 things #3 and #4

Thing #3 is 'Consider your personal brand' and #4 is 'Current awareness - Twitter, RSS and Pushnote', and I'm considering them together, not as a short cut but because of the inter-relationships between the tools we use for both.

For example, I use Twitter, but not as part of my public profile. I have a locked personal account, which is a great source of incoming news and links, a really useful tool for current awareness, and is invaluable for bouncing ideas off people.

A few years ago, I also had a public Twitter account set up under a random pseudonym (an account which has long since been deleted) which I set up to learn on. Twitter was one of those things I really had to try on for a while to see how it could be useful. Setting up a test drive account, not tied to my "personal brand" in any way, gave me the freedom to experiment and learn by doing, without the worry that I'd somehow do something that would be inscribed forever on the permanent record of the internet.

I do occasionally feel a bit boxed in by the decision to keep Twitter personal rather than professional - at least in terms of what I'm posting, rather than reading - but at the moment the balance of costs and benefits still isn't pushing me to go public in full.

I have a lot of respect for the benefits of 'living in public' ala Jeff Jarvis , but I think pseudonymity and 'constructed publics' - like a locked Twitter account - give many of the advantages with a lower level of risk.

Searching for myself online showed both that the personalized search bubble issue isn't particularly affecting this search, and that I need to do a little work. The University biography page that's been anchored as the first result in my vanity searches for several years vanished in the re-vamp of the department's website at the start of the year, and it's new location, hidden inside my library's OPAC pages, doesn't have quite the same SEO juice.

This blog doesn't show up in general searches (only a couple of the people-specific search sites had made the connection), so I need to tweak the meta-data to better represent the fact that this is one of the spaces where I choose to be public-broadcast.

The name 'Miss Alice' is, I admit, firmly tied to my current post - one of my past students started calling me by the title, and it all went from there. It's one notch more formal than just 'Alice' but less so than 'Ms Tyrell', and I'm not faculty so the generic 'Prof' isn't appropriate. The name landed here, because I started the blog for a student audience, and my using it for library-related thoughts is a relatively new development.

My LinkedIn profile, which is now the first substantive thing you find when you search for "Alice Tyrell", isn't as inviting and informative as I'd like it to be. I've done a little tidying up, but not being able to re-order my 'current' positions to list my primary post above my two part time volunteer gigs without fudging the dates fairly spectacularly is ... frustrating.

I think it's relatively clear that I'm not any of the other Alice Tyrell's that show up in the search results, though - I didn't die in 1422, I'm not a thoroughbred horse, nor was I a vaudeville dancer in the 1920s.

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