I just received an recruiting email, where the writer found me via my long neglected Indeed.com resume. It got me thinking about all the sites I've used over the years, that I've eventually abandoned, or at least dropped into neglect. Profiles on Monster, Indeed, NWJobs, MySpace...what do these say about me? To the recruiter emailing me about positions at Microsoft, what is there expectation of who I am, and would any elements of my current reality match?
On a somewhat related note, Om Malik recently posted You've Go (No) Mail. He talks about the sense of loss accompanying the ending of his Gigaom email. I've felt these twinges in the past, with the suspending of my Starbucks and Microsoft emails. But those were different at an elemental level. Regardless of my emotional connections to those institutions, I didn't found them. They didn't hold my name, they never represented me at the same level. The closest I could imagine is with this site, and the email associated with it.
carlsetzer.com is mine, it is me. If this were to become part of a larger institution, which subsequently failed, I expect that would hurt at a deeper level than the losses I've felt.
These footprints we leave across the web, and that the web leaves upon us. Intertwining, weaving with all those others, those we love, those we don't, and the masses we're unaware of, the active and neglected, loved and forgotten, all blend into this thing: the internet.