May 14, 2007

To be or not to be (on Google)

Two interesting articles to confront: You're a Nobody Unless Your Name Googles Well (WSJ) / Prof advocates digital forgetfulness, calls Google 'Soviet' (The Register)

"[W]hen Ms. W... was pregnant with her first child, she ran every baby name she and her husband, Justin, considered through Google to make sure her baby wouldn't be born unsearchable": The first article describes how being found on Google can become a problem for people with common names.
Some people have taken measures to boost their visibility online, including creating listings in professional directories and paying companies to help them appear more prominently in search results. Parents-to-be routinely plug baby names into search engines to scout out the online competition. Some actors and musicians weigh the impact of less unique stage names.
The phenomenom is not new: In No Logo, Naomi Klein writes about a consultant who changed her name so that it could become a vehicle for her activity.
The second article is on a paper published by a scholar who criticizes the fact that search tools record, store, and index everything.

Technology is a tool. Like all tools, it can be used for several things - good or bad.

1 comment:

FG said...

How US customs use Google: