My Google Identity

This assignment was interesting because I have never googled myself before…and I was pretty surprised to find what I did. First, while I was typing my name into the google search bar, the name Olivia Granata started to appear and showed a bunch of links to her facebook, myspace, etc. But once I typed my name I found several links that were directly associated with me. The first three links were to Twitter—to my own twitter page, a group list that I am on, and a list of people who follow me.

Then there was a link to a site called MyLife, which I’ve never even heard of but it listed my name next to my hometown. I clicked the link and it listed my name, hometown and age. I found this extremely creepy and pervasive. There was also a WhitePages link to someone named Barbara Coronato, which was weird because that is my mother’s first name, but the last name was not relevant. It listed me and my dad as the “associated people” under the link. However, when I clicked the link the webpage didn’t feature my name or my parents’ names, so I was confused as to why this page was one of the first few ones linked to my name on Google. The next link really surprised me; it was my grandma’s obituary from 2003, and while my name was obviously listed in it, I never personally saw it online. The link to my introduction entry on this blog was also listed, as well as a Chicago Sun Times story that included my name along with others in my hometown area who made the 2011 deans list at our respective colleges. But the more I kept clicking through the Google results pages, the more I found irrelevant links somehow linked to my name or parents’ names.

Overall, I was shocked at how much of my personal information is on the internet. I always protect my privacy on social network sites, but it clearly isn’t enough. I never realized how much information makes it on the internet and is available for anyone to see. This was a great example to see how the internet clearly blurs boundaries between private and public information.

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