JEFF PEARLMAN

Coming October 2022: "The Last Folk Hero: The Life and Myth of Bo Jackson"

“The douchiest” II

So I’ve been working on a piece for a business publication about social media and the job market, and how we’ve been introduced to a whole new form of networking.

It’s quite fascinating, actually. Back in the day (aka: five years ago) networking was strictly meant as a way of using one person to help another person find a job. For example, your pal’s pal’s sister’s uncle used to work for Apple, and your wife aspires to work for Apple. A certain genre of social networking goes on, and hopefully wife+pal’s pal’s sister’s uncle=Apple employment for wife. The magic of networking.

Nowadays, however, the Internet has changed all. You can find everything—absolutely everything—via the web. Word out of mouth has been, in many cases, replaced; substituted by Google searches and YouTube videos and on and on and on. For the most part, this is fantastic. Looking for a gig at Apple? Google “Apple gigs” or send a Tweet to the company’s CEO and you’ve skipped a ton of steps. Bliss.

There is, however, a dark side, and it is this: You want a job! You really, really want a job! You’ve got great references, a sterling resume, experience in the field. All the check marks are met, all the qualifications are met, you had a dazzling interview with the boss. And then (glub) he does a search of your name. An Internet search Google or Yahoo or, well, whatever. Makes little difference. Not only can he find out the name of your relatives; your home address; your date or birth; your social security number; your educational background; photos of your friends … he can also Google every single word you’ve ever Tweeted and blogged. No stone is unturned; no detail is ignored. You are naked. Beyond naked. You are exposed.

That was the message yesterday’s post was intended to convey; that one’s innocent little comments—when posted on the web—stick forever; sorta like a fly in amber. And when you refer to someone as a “dick” or a “cock” or a “fucker;” when a moment’s frustration or anger is placed upon a screen, those words stay attached to you; not to the person you slung them at … but to you. Forever.

Believe me, I know. I’ve made the mistakes, and when I see them committed by others, it stings. Not because of personal angst.

Because of personal experiences.