Sunday, November 27, 2011

The Importance of Checking Your Profile Name in Search Engines

Having an online profile name is an image that you portray, therefore, look at your profile as a brand name that you need to manage, promote, and establish a good image for social  reputation and credibility.
Top search engines Google and Yahoo
It is  important that you check your profile name (or googling yourself) from time to time   in search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing, and many others. In this way, you will be able to monitor how your profile rates publicly.

The normal way of googling your profile name is by simply typing it.  If it fails to search your name further, you may refine the search by typing your name in quotations or include other details such as your address. 

2.   The internet is a storage or archive of information that contains the history of  online actions or digital footprints  which can be easily searched by others.   Joining  various  websites and later become inactive without  complete deletion of profile, comments on forums or blogs, uploading photos in social networking sites, playing online games and alike.  

It is advisable to remove unnecessary online content and always check privacy settings of accounts especially with social networking websites such as Facebook. To keep privacy, one option is to   create a separate online profile name in business or various freelancing activities from your  personal image. 
3.   A prospective employer can check your name in the internet to investigate about your background, it is  therefore important that good reference of data will appear on the search.  If there is a  profile name same as yours with a negative record, atleast you are already aware of it and know how to answer during the interview.

To remove unwanted content in the Internet, Google had provided its members to remove certain URLs from their index or search results. Read more about the simple steps:
a. Follow the link,
b. Login to your Goolge account
c. Click "new removal request" and enter the URL you want to remove (be careful since it is case sensitive)
d.There are cases that it may be still visible in Google, you may request "removal of the cached version of the page".  

Removing your content from Google does not mean total deletion of the content, it still exist on the website where it appears. But by requesting from Google, this will decrease visibility from the Internet. The best option is to contact the webmaster especially if the unwanted content affects your online image.  From the Google Webmaster Help page, here are the simple ways to do it:

a.  Find "Contact Us" page from the website, sometimes it is by submitting a form to them or simply just check for their admin email address.  Write to them about your situation and justify your request for the removal of the unwanted page.

b.  Look for the website information by using a special search "Whois", type "who is",  you may also want to contact the webhosting company that appears listed from your Whois search result.
Older links are replaced by new data links, it is advisable to reinforce your online profile by positive descriptions that would be more searchable.

4.   If you are a freelance writer, you will be able to see if someone is using your own  profile name.  You can easily identify the websites you have joined and those that are not which also appears your profile name. 
An incident happened when a fellow writer supposedly a member of a  writing content website that accepts republished articles was not real, but using a different PayPal email address where payment is received.  The fake writer uses the profile name of the real writer, copy the original articles of the real writer from the  source website and republished it to another website.  No one would suspect about the fraud   since they have the same profile names and the second content website is accepting republished articles.     It is fortunate that the real writer was able to discover this fraud and contest it with the second content website.  They acknowledged the proofs presented and awarded the profile name including the payment to the real writer.