In starting this site, one of the first questions that came to mind was would I post under my ‘real’ name?
As individuals in the real world, we’re expected to have opinions, thoughts and comments on a multitude of different subjects but in the online world this can lead to dilution of our online ‘brand’. How many people who might visit this site would be interested in pictures of cute cats, stories of holidays with friends and family or my latest adventures in outdoor activities? To maintain interest, might it not be better to have separate channels for these online personas and interests but then, what level do we take it to when compartmentalising our content?
We should also bear in mind that for many, there is a very real concern about others seeing them as a spokesperson for their employees, customers, clients etc. Many of the companies (probably mostly now) I’ve worked with in the past have ‘social media’ policies which could in theory prevent employees making posts even when not naming or commenting specifically about their workplace, preventing them from sharing their thoughts in case they’re seen as representing the views of their employers or clients.
With those thoughts in mind, I’ve decided that rather than posting directly under my own name, I’d create this site and use it as a voice for my thoughts related to my professional interests and technology in general – I want to separate my personal identity from my online ‘work’ persona, but equally there needs to be some connection back to me as an individual; after all as a technology ‘consultant’ I need to be able to market my experience and thoughts.
So, this won’t be completely anonymous – if you looked into it, it probably wouldn’t take you long to work out who I am, where I live and so on but I want to be able to post my thoughts without being directly linked to organisations I may be working for now or have worked for in the past. It also saves you having to view innumerable cheesy lolcatz.