Aside

Flesh And Blood

Let me just say the truth that no one else wants to tell you:

We are sick to death of that grey faceless icon you let be your image on Linked In or Facebook. Said more positively, we want to see you. Not a grey faceless icon, but you. And, not some weird, Second Life-style digital rendering either. You means the real you.


Linked In, the social network for business, allows their users to become users without uploading a picture. Which I don’t get. Isn’t that a core profile element? FaceBook allows it too. Which seems kinda surprising because of the whole “face” thing, they seem so into. You’d think they could set a policy that says “we like actual faces here”. On Twitter, I recently confused two different “Todds” that I was corresponding with. One changed his picture to be a closeup and I thought it was the digital  2nd-life picture guy finally adding his realness. I admit I am embarrassed to share this, but I’m fairly sure I’m not the only one with this problem.

Why are we doing this people? Why are we hiding ourselves? Is it that we’re afraid to be seen? Are we really that “face-less”? Is it that we think, it’s not necessary because the people you care about already know what you look like? Perhaps that’s true. Perhaps you don’t need the picture, but others do. It gives them context; It’s kind to the community. Is it fear that someone might judge you for what you look for and therefore you might not get that all-important interview? Guess what, if that person is really that way, you don’t want that interview.

We call a lot of these mediums “social” but quite often we are not being social beings. We are acting like automatons instead of flesh-n-blood humans.

Hiding yourself makes us wonder if you’re 500 lbs. or your face is covered with 20,000 zits. In which case grey faceless might not be such a bad idea. But otherwise, please let us see the real you. We can take it. And so can you.

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2 Responses:

  1. Tara Rodden Robinson. August 5, 2011 at 8:02 pm  |  

    Hi Nilofer,

    Yes, yes, yes! I’m amazed at how many people are reluctant to show their faces, especially coaches and consultants who are hawking services that depend on trust and authenticity. I’ve seen more websites than you can shake a stick at which are not just faceless, but nameless, too. It’s crazy!

    When I went into business, I made my mind up from the very start to show up as me, full name, real photo, everywhere, all the time. Yep, even Google reviews of restaurants. If I’m unwilling to show up as the real me, I don’t go there.

    Thanks again for the post and have a great weekend!
    Tara

    Reply
  2. Khalid. August 6, 2011 at 10:46 pm  |  

    Hi Nilofer,

    Being a Muslim, this could be tighed to our religion!

    But the way I see it, it provides more privacy in a sense I can say whatever pops in my mind without caring what others might think of it!

    It ignite the real you behind the person you look at!

    We are having political unrest in my country unfortunately these days and thre was a lady who works with me in the company who got a warning letter because she said what she thinks is right but that was against the company itself! That’s why hiding my picture makes me feel safer as I can voice my objection abot my stupid company policies!

    Regards,
    Khalid

    Regards,
    Khalid

    Reply

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