Let me preface this post by saying that I do not sit around and constantly Google my name or see where my name ranks in history. I promise.
So about every month or so a story comes out asking if you are Googleable. “A prospective employer could Google you and see your crazy party pics, effectively taking you out of the running for a job”, they say. OR they could Google you and find that you have a terrifying criminal record. My co-worker recently Googled her name and found this:
Neither her nor I knew that Gina had such a horrific past, but all I know is I am going to be absolutely sure to stay away from her when she’s driving.
But in all honesty I have worried that google would pick up on something stupid from my past (not that I ever did anything that would disqualify me from a job…). And googling your name for pictures seems like it could be a disaster. When my wife and I went on a safari in Southern Africa we met a girl who’s job it was to look at the facebook profiles of job applicants and report back if they looked like “meatheads”. Those people’s applications where thrown out.
Now I’m no meathead, but you never know what kind of crazy pictures were taken of you when you may have been having a good, safe time but decided to point at the camera with your drink and yell at the top of your lungs. For instance, when Google-imaging New York Giants quarterback (and professional whiner) Eli Manning, you get this:
Not a flattering picture.
So I Google-imaged myself, hoping and praying that some ridiculous photo that I de-tagged on facebook didn’t just creep onto google and wait to be unearthed in an effort to destroy my reputation. The results were the following:
A BASSIST IN SOME RANDOM BAND:
AND THIS LITTLE GIRL (SERIOUSLY):
But NO pictures of me. None. It’s slightly relieving but strangely disappointing. I suppose this little girl is more important than I am, proving that I am not important whatsoever.
To be fair, because I have the same name as my father he has completely dominated my Googlability. A former public affairs officer for the Navy, he was quoted by everyone and their brother over the past 10+ years, leaving me with little or no Google real estate.
So I am left with something that is rather rare in this day and age, relative Google anonymity. Even as someone who has written and produced news stories for the internet and TV, I’m so low on the list that I’m barely a blip.
This may sound like a pity party, but I’m not really that disappointed. When it comes down to it I would rather be known for who I am presently than who I was in the past. And god forbid someone saw a picture of me on Google and thought I looked like the kid that used to make fun of their son, or something like that. No way THAT Frank is getting the job.