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April 10, 2009

Identity Crisis

-1 I'm having a bit of an identity crisis. And it's not the kind you think. You see, I have an online identity separate from my IRL identity. It all started when I first began blogging and chose to blog under an alias for a variety of reasons: to protect my family, to avoid embarrassment, to not jeopardize my job. But then, I joined Facebook for work reasons (no, really!) I monitor new media and high-tech products to keep tabs on the business practices of technology companies. The problem is, that I joined FB waaaay back when you had to be invited to join through a network.

And, as luck would have it, that network was my professional network setup by my co-workers at my place of employment. Of course I had to use my real name to join...and so my identity crisis was born.

I've tried very hard to keep my FB identity (i.e., my real identity) separate from my blog persona. I setup different email accounts and make sure not to make any mention of my blog on the FB page and no mention of my FB account on my blog.  And it was working fairly well until recently. Now FB and Twitter have become the way to build your brand and your business. It would be in my best interest to let my 300+ FB friends know that I have a blog and also to let my blog readers know that they can "friend" me on FB and I could develop bloggy relationships that way. Also, now that I am planning a conference, I would love to promote that on my FB page. But alas, unless I want Tom, Dick and Sue from the office to know all of my business, I absolutely can't go there.

It sounds lame and not like a real problem, I know. But as social networks become increasingly integrated, the more I feel backed into a corner. I haven't sync'd my FB page with my blog. I haven't linked my Twitter page to my FB page. I don't respond to bloggy friends (who know my real name) and add me as a friend on FB. I fear that I'll mess up one day and divulge my bloggy persona to the folks at work.

Such a bizarre quandry and a true testament to the times. They really should call it: Spider-Web 2.0!

An original DC Metro Moms post. Justice Fergie also blogs at MamaLaw and JustFergie, in addition to contributing to other sites. She is also the Co-Coordinator of Blogalicious 2009, The Social Gathering for Women Bloggers of Color.

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