There is with some pride that I can claim I am almost Ungoogleable. It is something I have worked hard to achieve. To always hide my true identity [location & real name], but not who I am.
I would not call it paranoia tho. It is more about me enjoying some privacy. Growing up— showing my age now —in a time where you could not go online and find out everything about a person by visiting a search engine.
It is similar to the anonymity most of us enjoy when walking around outside. We can all see what we look like and kind of make up our mind what kind of person someone is based on what they wear and how they act. But their identity, that is a bit difficult, unless we walk up to them and ask what their name is and where they live — which most people would be very uncomfortable with.
The unfortunate nature of how the Internet work is that it is very easy to piece together information. Take a little bit from here, then a bit from there — voila, you have created a profile of someone by harvesting information and connecting the digital dots.
As my portfolio grows it has become more difficult to justify using a pseudonym. The local paper I have been writing for the last few years did accept me using a pseudonym at first, but I later decided to use my real name.
An artist can easily get away with using a pseudonym — a journalist not so much.
On Twitter and on this blog I still call myself Dokter Waldijk, but with a few clicks you will easily find my real name. Making it not much of a secret anymore. Yet it still creates a minor barrier. Kind of separating my real name from my online presence.
Still, I have been thinking about for the last week using my real name on Twitter and on this blog. Dokter Waldijk would of course still be the name of the blog, as I kind of see it now as a brand name of mine.
I guess this is very difficult when becoming a journalist. It makes it very difficult to keep everything you write separated. As in, anything that is related to what you do as a journalist becomes almost vital to be part of your portfolio, because your portfolio is what moves your career forward in the media.
Maybe in a few days you will see something different than Dokter Waldijk when checking my Twitter profile or visit this blog.