Google your way to a better online reputation

 

Not everyone will admit that they Google themselves. It can sound kind of vain. But most people really do want to know what's being said about them.

It makes sense. Who wouldn't want to eavesdrop on the collective consciousness? Plus, we know that potential employers, customers and even dates are using it to form opinions about us, so it's smart to find out what the word on the street is.

With any luck, you'll like what you see. For many people, it's a showcase of their most noteworthy accomplishments: awards won, articles written, donations to charity, affiliations with upstanding organizations. Some people's results are dominated by their contributions to social media, including blog posts they've written or YouTube videos they've created (which can be good or bad, depending on what you've put out there).

Unfortunately, for some people, Google unearths unflattering profiles, bad reviews, or even slanderous content. Maybe you crossed the wrong blogger. Maybe you have a more serious PR problem. Heck, maybe you're in the mafia. Sometimes, there's information out there that isn't even true.

If you don't like what you see, at least you'll have some insight as to why you didn't get a second interview or why that girl never called you back. The first step towards improving your online reputation is knowing you have a problem!

What sorts of unexpected things have you found looking yourself up on Google or Bing?