Erasing the footprint

I’ve spent a lot of time lately pondering the digital footprint.

I am leaving behind quite a long trail as I continue to blog and communicate via social media. Many of you have wondered why my posting as decreased here. It’s not intentional. Well, okay maybe it is.

You know when you get junk mail? How many of you just toss it? Or do you black out your name on old magazines and shred everything? I guess I am somewhere in between. I figure anyone can obtain my address and phone, but the big key for me is staying as far under the radar as I can.

The reality is, I worry. I’ve tried to maintain anonymity to some extent. For the most part I’ve succeeded. Many of you know my real name, but it’s only because we trade e-mails, are FB friends, or exchange holiday cards. I’m careful because I am a visible corporate citizen by day. I am a tad jealous that many of my blog friends use their full name, but the difference is I am not building a brand or self-employed as a writer or social media maven.

I’m just Shelli.  Working mom, and Chief do-it-all of the BagMomma house.

I don’t want David to look back and be embarrassed by anything I’ve posted here. I’ve also wondered when the time comes that I should stop posting pictures of him. I’m not naive, and don’t want to go off topic… lord knows there have been plenty of opinions on the topic of posting children’s photos in the public realm. My stance has always been in the middle. I don’t post anything, written or photo-wise that I expect might be ripped off and cause harm to my family.  I leave my thoughtful writing elsewhere, where I am completely anonymous, and unfortunately, not on BagMomma.

If you are my Facebook friend, you may have noticed that I am posting less and cleaning house.  I removed the networked blog application because I realized that even though my FB profile is locked down from being indexed out on the web, my name still appeared on search if I “liked” a blog.  Argh!!!  Damn you FB!  I removed 95% of my photos too.  I didn’t have much out there, and my photos were viewable ONLY to my friends on FB, but I didn’t feel comfortable leaving them there for Mark Zuckerberg to cache them off into whatever evil plot he has to take over the world.

Twitter is still my friend, and to be honest it’s where I am most comfortable now. Even though I know every tweet is being archived for posterity, it is the best place for me to “talk” to my Internet friends, get instant news, and follow the latest social media swarm topic. And, there was this live wire from yesterdayOy vey.  The freaks came out in full force, and slammed our humble community in the name of free speech.  I do love how some folks use that argument to justify evil.  I sleep more soundly at night knowing I am still not a crackerjack at the bottom of the food chain. 

It’s the little things.

Speaking of Twitter, yesterday I clicked over to a link from Mama Kat:

Her link went to a pretty neat tool I too have used recently which marries your name with your Internet presence to show how exposed you are.  It can be very eye-opening if you’ve been avoiding the reality.

Or, you can just Google yourself for the nitty gritty.  I occasionally Google my name to ensure nothing squirrelly is hanging out for search engines to feed.  If you don’t do so on an a regular basis, you should start PRONTO.  If you are a person with a common name, consider yourself lucky that you still might be able to hide in Google search pages.  Unfortunately, not the case for me.

So where does that leave me?  Well, a little more comfortable that I am taking steps to preserve my digital history and yet, a little melancholy that I have to remember to protect it.

It’s the world we live in now. 

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