April 30th, 2008

sociology, interviews

(no subject)

(Thesis: 58 pages. Doggedly trying to clean up the theoretical end of my lit review. Bad at theory, my theory teacher's good opinion of me to the contrary. Tired, mid-afternoon slump).

A friend and I were having an interesting conversation with [chair] yesterday about what we put out online for viewing and what we don't. Some people go for not having any sort of online footprint; some people go for putting way too much out there, and most of us go for controlling what's out there, though some are more paranoid than others. I don't mind having my picture out there, and I don't mind this LJ being findable - I generally keep my last name off of it, but it's findable because of my Flickr, which does have my last name on it. Which is fine - look at my Flickr account, and you'll see, um, cats, friends, knitting, me in a swim suit. Oooh boogie. You can Google my Amazon wishlist. Hey, I like sci-fi, knitting, and cooking. Gee.

In other words, there's nothing here that I'm worried about a potential employer finding, partially because it's a pretty quiet life these days and partly because I lock up everything to do with family, work, and school. (One of the reasons I like LJ over a blog blog, the fact that I can do that.) I'm picky about who I add, so I'm not worried about anything getting back to someone it shouldn't (and really, the worst that's here is the occasional bitching about stupid students, sans names.) It's easy enough to figure out where I go to school - there aren't that many "mid-sized universities" in NC that have masters degrees in soc - but there's nothing much here to worry about, either. I'm out about my sexuality and politics at school/work (and really, I'm in the right industry to be a mostly-flaming liberal) and I'm out but not vocal about my past mental health issues (I'll tell anyone who wants to know that I went crazy and took 11 years to finish my undergrad. Whether they take me seriously or not is their issue).

Which is my (very) meandering way of saying, what do you guys mind having online that's identifiable back to you, what do you try to avoid, and do you much care if people can find your online lives?

[eta]: I'd forgotten about this... my boundaries are a little weird sometimes. I don't particularly care if students stumble across my LJ and hear about Lucy escaping or my playing video games and eating pasta last night - heck, I tell them about that stuff - but when someone couldn't find my school email address, needed to make an appointment, and finally just googled me and emailed me at my gmail address? Seeing an email from a student in my gmail inbox was like a physical punch in the stomach. I hadn't realized how much I separated control of communications until then. That was a little weird.
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