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Twittervox, flatlisters and a possible trip to Paris

In today’s Twittervox episode we had Nik Butler talking about his idea of the flatlister. The concept is based around the idea that when someone is promoting themselves and building their own persona they are a flat lister. In other words they are in charge of their own persona and their own reputation. This carries on from a topic that was discussed by Jeff Pulver when he asked whether we prefer to use our real name or a nickname.

There is one school of thought that believes that you should turn yourself into a brand whilst another school of thought believes that you should create a nickname as your brand can be sold off should it become successful enough. That’s just scraping the surface though and here is a short description of how others and I are attempting to use new media and social networking to promote our skills.

A few months ago I got a message from a documentary producer asking whether I had more footage of an event they were interested in. They had seen a short edit either on youtube or my site and thought that this would be of value to their project. I said that I had more footage and so over a period of time I sent over the material which they looked through. They decided to use my footage and as a result their documentary will be broadcast sometime in Springtime of 2008 on Arte. That’s great news for me and I’m really happy. There’s going to be a screening of the documentaries and I’m going to do my best to get there to meet these people in person. Any opportunity should be taken to meet new people.

In today’s media and cultural landscape any job that’s advertised is seen by thousands of eyes. What that means is that you’ve got a lot of competition and sending your CV is not enough. One job I recently applied to had over a thousand people apply to it. With such great numbers of people applying there’s little chance of finding work through as passive a method as sending an e-mail and electronic cv to find work. One person in Geneva said that you’ve got to stand out, after all those sorting through applications have a pile of several hundred cv on their desks to sort through.

I’ve been using Linkedin recently, adding all those people whom I have had contact with to see whether there are any of their contacts that could help me find people whom have a need for my expertise. Jemima Kiss recently made a comment about Linkedin asking why people don’t put their full CV on the website. As a result of that comment I added a few of the more interesting experiences I have had.

When you’re at Podcamp every single person has a website. Everyone is their own brand. If you listen to them introduce themselves they will all say who they are and what their website is. Some will even wear the T-shirts that promote either their site or that of the software they use as work tools.

They also have twitter accounts. Twitter is one of those tools that’s great for entrepreneur and freelancers because it makes it so much easier to judge the quality of character of those you are working with. You get an idea of their lifestyle, of their work ethic and more. if you’re awake by 7 or 8am then that shows through. If they’re working on one large project or several smallers ones you see it as well. In brief you know when is the best time to contact them for working on current or new projects.

We are now living in an era where everyone has access to the same information around the globe and as a result we have a great deal of competition. It is up to us, as individuals, with the tools we have available to demonstrate that we have the required know how.

How do you use the tools currently available to us and do other people in your circle of friends also use them? Has it changed your way of working? I’m looking forward to Nik Bulter’s Flatlister article and your feedback.

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