Alchemical Thoughts

How many profiles do I have? Probably too many

Posted on: August 21, 2007

I have to say this is not a question I have really considered much. The question caught my eye when I saw a post over at the Social Networking Weblog asking "How Many Profiles Do You Have?" So here is my attempt to see exactly what I have. It may not cover everything, since there are some things I have stopped using over time. Here goes:

  • Well, for openers, the most obvious is my profile here on Vox. I use the username maverick.librarian. I also have a student resource blog under the username gypsylibrarian on Vox. Once I chose that username as a sort of persona from my main blog, I have set up other accounts using it. It makes for consistency. Ok, it makes for something easy for me to remember. Maverick Librarian has been an alternate username choice. I suppose one could write another post speculating about why one chooses certain usernames, but I will save that for later. Anyhow, we have then two accounts/profiles on Vox. This one here is my scratch pad.
  • Yahoo! 360. I have a profile on Yahoo!'s very limited attempt at social networking. You can find it here. I just activated it from the e-mail account I already had with them, which was connected to the My Yahoo! page I use for news. I used the blog there for my scratch pad, but they offer no privacy settings for individual posts, and the overall structure is more restrictive. So I moved the blogging from there here. The profile is kept up to date, but otherwise, the page is no longer being used. I just refer visitors to the blog here.
  • Blogger. I got my start in blogging with Blogger. My professional blog (The Gypsy Librarian) and my first personal blog (The Itinerant Librarian) are there. Both are still active, though I have been too busy lately to do anything with them. I will be getting back to them soon enough. Gypsy Librarian is where I post about my experiences as an academic instruction librarian as well as some reflections on my craft and the profession. Itinerant Librarian is the unruly cousin; it is where I post about anything else that may interest me or catch my attention. I like to say that I use the unruly cousin's blog to write about stuff not talked about in polite company, but I throw other things in. Usually, if it does not go in The Gypsy Librarian, the unruly cousin handles it.
  • I now have a profile on Facebook. I have written a few posts on my humble experiences using Facebook. Find a recent example here.
  • I have a profile on Ning. On Ning, I belong to the LIS students group and to the Librarian Bloggers group. Joining was sort of an impulse thing. I check on it once in a while, but I am not an active user of the device. At this point, I don't find it terribly intuitive, and people in it don't seem terribly active either.
  • For books, I finally caved in and got an account in one of those social networks for readers. At the invitation of a friend, I have now an account with Good Reads. Find my profile here. An immediate turn-off is that the profile URL is not terribly easy to remember (based on a number). However, I have enjoyed putting in my books and shelving them in categories. I did add the widget to the blogs on Blogger. The jury is still out on this one for me, but so far, it looks good. I know a lot of the L2 crowd favors Library Thing, but since I am not one to pay for a service (they charge after 200 books entered; I am already up to 100+ on Good Reads), I decided not to use it. Way I see it, go with what works, not just the hype.
  • For music, I do have a Pandora account. Find my profile here.I don't listen to it everyday, but I would say I turn it on at work at least once a week. I don't do a lot with it other than listen to music and now and then maybe mark a song to my favorites list. I think I almost have the techno/trance station I set up to a level where I like it. I definitely like this idea of typing in a song and the system finding you similar things.
  • Also on music, I have an account on Last.fm. Here is the profile for this one. I did not find Last.fm to be very intuitive or user friendly. For a 2.0 tool to work, in my case, has to be something I can use with ease, and I have to be able to figure it out pretty quick. This tool had an extra download to install a tool, which I don't use, meant to use any music on your computer as a way to synch with Last.fm. I did not care much for that. The radio stations seemed very awkward to use when compared to Pandora. I may give it another chance, but not anytime soon. I don't see the appeal on this one at this point in time, but I can say I tried it.
  • For movies, I have a presence in Flixster. Find my profile here. I got invited to it by one of my students. It works ok for me. I am not one to watch movies as they come to movie theaters, preferring to wait for the DVD. Therefore, I don't review or rate films in a way as timely as others. And for me, it is ok. I now and then like to play with their ongoing movie quiz. I did add the Flixster widget to my Facebook profile just to see what adding one outside application would to a Facebook profile.
  • I have a del.icio.us account. Find my page here. I don't use it as much as I could. When it comes to bookmarks, some I don't mind if they are public, others I want private. While This tool now allows for putting some bookmarks as private, I don't find it the most efficient thing. Anyhow, I am still experimenting with this one. I can see uses for it, but I would need to make it more of a habit.
  • For photos, I have a Flickr account. I have to say that I am not big on taking photos, and personally, I see myself as a bit shy and not particularly photogenic. As a result, I limit the photos I take. However, to try it out, I did put some photos of myself up. That there are options for privacy was something I liked. Find my profile here. I found it easy to activate it when Yahoo! bought them, since I just used the same Yahoo! account for it. One thing I have found this useful for: photos of library displays I have made. I think this can be useful as a supplementary way to document some of my projects.

Those are then the profiles I can remember because they stand out. Way back when, I was registered with Netscape and some of the old search engines and directories (things like Lycos), but I no longer use those. However, since the Netscape one was connected to AOL, I used that username for my AIM. I should say I am not a huge IM user. I have some people I keep in touch with using IM, and I let students know the usernames for AIM and YIM. A couple of students do talk to me that way, but it is not a major thing for me. I do turn the IM on when I am at my desk at work.

Also, I have tried a few other tools with mixed results. I could probably make a post on some of the failures, but that would be some other time. I also have a couple that I liked, but that time has prevented me from engaging. That is one thing I have learned when it comes to these 2.0 tools. Time is a factor. One has to be selective. One has to go with what works. If it does not work for you, drop it. There is probably a better tool out there for your needs or desires. So, there is a few of my online profiles and expressions. 

As a final thought, I should say that I do like having some bits about me that others can find. It's a nice way to allow others to learn about me and find me. I am very introverted, which I find amusing considering the work I do. So I don't like to have splashy pages (a reason I don't have a profile on MySpace, for instance), but something in moderation works for me. In the end, that is another lesson: one has to remember moderation. I do enjoy trying new things here and there, but I am not one to jump on every tool or toy online. That's what works for me.

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2 Responses to "How many profiles do I have? Probably too many"

I'm also addicted to del.icio.us, flickr, jaiku, last.fm, ning, tumblr, upcoming, vox, xing and yahoo360 ! PS You might be interested in my Mutual Friends and Reciprocity VOX groups !

I may just have to take a look at those groups. It can be very easy to get addicted to various things if one is not a bit careful and selective. Best, and keep on blogging.

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