On August 15, 2018, I will be celebrating 10 years of iWebU - that's over 500 weekly posts .
Leading up to that momentous date, I am re-releasing the "best of iWebU", starting in 2008 and moving forward.
These are the posts that stand the test of time and remain as valuable today as they did then.
And so, I revisit Web Secret #195: Nobody Knows You're a Dog.
Why? To function in the 21st century, most of us need a profound understanding of the power the Internet. This means that what we throw up on the web is a representation of who we are. Put up a crappy website, Tweet a thoughtless remark, post something idiotic on Facebook and that becomes who you are in the minds of many.
Conversely, a well crafted web presence can provide us with amazing opportunities because nobody knows there is only one person behind the curtain.
Web Secret #195: Nobody Knows You're a Dog - February 29, 2012
Raise your hand if you've ever heard the saying "On the internet, nobody knows you're a dog."
This adage began life as the caption of a cartoon published by The New Yorker in 1993. It features two dogs: one sitting on a chair in front of a computer, speaking to a second dog sitting on the floor. As of 2000, the panel was the most reproduced cartoon from "The New Yorker."
Now raise your hand if you knew what the Internet was in 1993...
Initially, some argued that the cartoon marked a critical moment in Internet history, when it moved from being the exclusive domain of geeks and academics, to being a topic of general interest.
To others, the cartoon symbolizes an understanding of Internet privacy that stresses the ability of users to anonymously send and receive messages.
But what does this concept mean for you, a professional?
Simply put, on the Internet, nobody will know whether you are a two or a two hundred person operation, nor an expert with one or twenty years of experience - unless your online presentation is unprofessional.
If you have a professional looking website, use Twitter, Facebook and other social media appropriately, upload professional photos instead of candid snapshots, users will think that you are smart, current, honest and dependable.
If you are going to put yourself out there, whatever you do, it better be sharp, and classy.
Otherwise, users will assume you are a dog.