Nothing is secret anymore. Unfortunately for Robert Scoble, whose private correspondence was aired on a blog, we are beginning to slowly learn that anything could potentially become public knowledge.
Okay, well, Robert Scoble’s experience is on the far extreme end of things. The blogger who brought Robert’s private correspondence into the light was acting not only unethically but did something that the blogosphere considers extremely socially awkward.
Despite this, people are learning more about you, no matter what you do, and your life isn’t necessarily private anymore. Blogs are mediums for people to talk. Some people will talk with integrity, with professionalism. Others will just try to instigate, obviously not caring too much about the people who are affected. (Interestingly enough, the individual who posted to the PodCamp NYC blog about Robert didn’t identify himself; he posted instead as “podcastnyc.net”. He had the courage to write a completely inappropriate blog post but he didn’t have the courage to go all the way and use his own name. Sad.)
Blogs are just one part of the picture. The other part isn’t exactly the latest in news: your Facebook and MySpace profiles aren’t secret either. It could cost you a job offer. It can tarnish a good reputation when you flaunt characteristics that are atypical of the model employee.
Your email correspondence on a blog, your Facebook profile … what next?
Your YouTube video, of course.
I wrote last month how people are getting caught after showing off on YouTube. More and more people are using their camera phones to capture excruciatingly embarrassing moments (Michael Richards aka Kramer improvisation via YouTube). It’s time for individuals to aspire to be of the model employee mindset at all times.
A recent incident at UCLA, where a cop tasered a student who lacked proper identification, was published on blogs, and the accompanying YouTube video made it too. The incident was also discussed all over college campuses, and the Columbia Spectator made a very interesting observation:
This is the semester in which YouTube grew up … The rising ubiquity of small cameras and the presence of video-sharing Web sites opened every corner of the world — especially technology-savvy college campuses — to public scrutiny … What happens in a fleeting moment is no longer lost to the public.
YouTube, just like that blog, just like your MySpace page that is identified by your name, is just another way of getting people to get to know you. Videos of school fights are being put online, and people are talking about it.
And so we are moving to an online society where our actions speak just as loud as our words.