Sunday, January 17, 2010

Something else to worry about (if you choose to)

Quick, name one thing that the mass media is good at.

Spreading helpful information? Telling the whole truth about news events? Making us a more educated populace?

If I knew how to add sound effects to this blog, you’d hear three loud game-show buzzers after all of the above – the kind of buzzer that says loud and clear, “HELL, NO!”

What is the mass media good at? Giving us more and more things to worry about. Now it’s your “online profile” and how it looks to potential employers.

Beware the photo of you drinking margaritas with your friends in Cozumel back in the summer of ’06! Beware the pointed comment you left on a political website! Beware your own blog, because you might have written something that other people may not like! Beware being modest and having five or less Google hits to your name! Beware people who tell lies about you on Facebook!

Now, sayeth the mass media, you need to Google yourself every day and pay companies to “clean up” your Web profile, or else you run the risk of being unemployable.

I say the hell with all that.

If a potential employer cares more about the content of my blog than the quality of my work, that’s an employer I want nothing to do with. What is the point of having a blog if you’re going to censor yourself?

If a potential employer is offended that I’m an atheist (4-12-09), that I don’t volunteer (8-31-09), that I emphasize with the Misfit Doll (12-22-09), or that I even mentioned Bill Ayers (12-3-09), I can’t care too much about that. My blog first and foremost is a place to speak my mind. Not a place to “promote” myself or sell things. (Ever notice that blogs whose primary purpose is to sell things are often as boring as beige?)

I have work to do and meanders to walk and pages to write and books to read and baths to take and Two Dogs to love. Not a lot of room in my life to go cleaning up my web profile or jumping on any worry trains. I say turn off the TV (and the computer, even though I know it's hard) every now and then and see what is right in front of you.

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