Who ARE you?

Hi, kids–

Way bizzy at the ol’ workfest this week. Hope everybody’s doing well and that things are groovy.

So who exactly are you online? I ask because, as some of you know, Google revised its privacy policies recently and there was the hoop-dee-do about what Google knows about you, which made everybody wonder what all Facebook knows about you and that then should lead us to think about what corporations know about us (for marketing purposes) and on like that.

After Google came up with its new privacy policies you had to go through some hoops to make adjustments and…hell, I can’t remember what all was involved. The thing that struck me, however, while I was going through all those hoops was the profile that Google had come up with about me (because Google likes to tailor ads to its Gmail users).

According to Google, I’m a guy between 18-25, based on my “interests” and keyword mentions and whatever other formulas it runs on people so it can pimp various products to them.

Well, Google’s wrong about me on both accounts. But that’s okay. I like not fitting algorithms and expectations. It’s not something I try to do. That’s just how I am.

All of this made me think, again, about all of the people out there online, interacting with each other, revealing certain things about themselves, hiding others. Even creating entire identities. And who knows what they’ll do with the information you provide? Corporations have marketing profiles on you. Some of your social networking “friends” may not be who they say they are. And everything you put online is there forever.

Kinda creepy, don’t you think?

So there’s a reminder for you. Be careful out there.