Have you ever stopped to think what would be your I.D. in this ever-changing and evolving world where the Internet is a key pillar? There are nine elements of digital citizenship that you need to think about, but the very start should be to take care of your online identity aka carefully manage your digital footprint.
We like. We share. We comment. We interact. We learn online. As human beings, it’s quite normal to we want to connect with others and share our opinions. But we do have to be mindful about the trace – data – we leave behind. As well as the impression we leave on others. Since – and don’t we all know it – first impression today are made online.
Jeremy Jordan is one of the “dot-MErs” who gets this and who decided to take control over his online identity by creating his own personal website. By doing this, gained full control over his narrative and found a way to combine all different aspects of his personality under one online roof. But before we get too philosophical here, let’s jump over to Jeremy and see what we can learn from him. 🙂
First Things First, Who is Jeremy Jordan?
Jeremy is a machine learning engineer from North Carolina currently working in the field of cybersecurity. Plus, according to his personal website, he equally enjoys sailing, paddle boarding, and traveling. You can learn a lot about the person from his website and content they share, and so it happens that we find Jeremy to be a curious person always eager to learn and grow.
His blog posts are a reflection of his desire to share with the world and his future self what he is learning professionally. He shares insights on various interesting topics from engineering to neuroscience and design. The posts are alike journal entries and present a record of his ideas, thoughts, and the things he has learned and covered in his self-set curriculum.
Jeremy made his content public because he hopes to help people with the same things he is working on and invites everyone to join the discussion. As he puts it:
“I’m a big believer in the open, frank critique of ideas and I believe the best way to grow an idea is to attack it.”
What is Open Annotation Software?
To encourage others to challenge his views and share their own opinions and suggestions, Jeremy uses open annotation software.
For those of you who are not familiar with this type of software, we are talking about a feature that enables users to leave comments aka annotations, even if there is no comments section. This feature is growing in popularity in the US publishing communities like the science and research community, educational community, etc.
The aim of this software is not to help you troll people or lash out at opinions you don’t agree with. In fact, it’s there to help make a collective contribution to a piece of work by engaging in meaningful discussion, by providing supporting arguments or opposite claims, and even helping the author(s) with typos and edits.
The company behind this brilliant idea is Hypothesis. The vision behind their software is to create an environment that fosters a respectful exchange of ideas and opinions. If you are into publishing articles and other kinds of materials on your website, consider installing this feature.
The Positive Aspects of Having a Personal Website
Taking control over your digital footprint is one of the starting points to becoming a respectable digital citizen. With this, we mean that you have to be conscious about the websites you visit, emails you send, interactions on social media and so on. You also have to approach the content you share strategically, and the best way this is through a platform only you control, from its name to its design – a personal website.
If you take Jeremy as an example, you’ll see that owning a website is beneficial in so many ways. What his website is doing for his brand is far-reaching. He is using storytelling to engage his users and build his brand. He is doing this by sharing stories about his life and dreams, his thoughts and beliefs – precisely the elements of every successful brand out there, no matter if it’s a personal brand or company brand we’re talking about.
By working on strengthening your online persona, you also contribute to your digital notability and credibility. This can help you in your pursuit of a new job or that project you really want to get your hands on. When someone searches your name, whether that is the person you met at a party last night or the HR department of your prospective employer, you want those results to present who you really are and what you stand for. You’d be amazed by the leverage you get over talent hunters by having a personal website.
If we imagine ourselves as recruiters and take Jeremy as an example, we can see that his learning goals are self-set, which tell us he is proactive and hardworking. Also, by taking a look at the variety of topics he covers, his favorite quotes, talks, and reading lists, you get a sense of who he is as a person, what he values in life, and what he aspires to achieve. If you wanted to evaluate a cultural fit, a personal website is a space to go to, and employers know this.
We are proud that Jeremy has recognized the values behind .ME domains and chose to build his online home on a .ME of his own. By building his personal website on a personal domain with a NameSurname combination, he sends out the message that the content he is sharing with the readers is a reflection of what HE, Jeremy Jordan, is trying to accomplish. With .ME being the most personal domain extension out there, it has the power to reinforce one’s message and create a feeling in the reader that they are in a real personal space. The more you become involved, open, and honest in your digital representation, the more human you seem.
This brings us to the following point…
The Many Benefits of Blogging
By bringing value to other internet users you take on the role of a respectable digital citizen; not to mention that you can work miracles for your personal brand!
Posting regularly adds up to your organizational skills, as well as discipline and time management for that matter. Let’s say you decide to post once a week or bimonthly, and you publicly announce that you are going to do so. What this will do is push you and motivate you to stay on schedule. Not only that, but you will have your readers as your accountability partners who will help you stay on track. Plus, you’ll want to do it for yourself, of course.
Writing 1000-word posts on a regular basis will undeniably do wonders for your written skills over a course of time. Creating well-written digital content which brings value to the visitor will help you stand out. Also, you will get to be creative and express your artsy side with your design and layouts.
Not to mention that you get to work on developing skills you can later monetize. We are talking about learning things like programming languages, website creation, web design, SEO, email marketing, and how registering your own domain name and hosting works. It might sound like too much and something that can’t be handled by oneself, but it’s amazing how much you can learn if you choose to go down this path.
To Stand As A Reminder…
Jeremy is a great example of a new generation of proactive people who realize the potential of having a website with a personalized domain name. Furthermore, he is one of those people who teaches us about the importance of accepting and encouraging other people’s opinions about our work. You don’t have to share the same opinion with them, but this is definitely one of the things that will help you grow and develop on a professional and personal basis.
Not only this, but Jeremy Jordan keeps reminding us that by owning your online presence and managing your digital footprint you are in control of your online brand and that has long become the priority and personal responsibility of all digital citizens.