Geez, I hope not.
It hasn’t bit me yet. *knocks wood*
Google me. Go ahead, I’ll wait.
See? Just boring storyboard blog stuff.
No drunken photos of me licking people’s faces, making obscene gestures or my leg draped around strange men.
No videos of me lip syncing to AC/DC, swilling beer or screaming curse words.
All that stuff is safely tucked away in photo albums and video tapes on my bookshelf.
Right where they should be.
That they are only on my bookshelf is one of the benefits of being an old fart. No camera phones and YouTube when I was in my twenties.
Thank friggin’ gawd.
Well now that I’ve opened myself up for my friends to post my dirty laundry on Facebook, I’ll get to the point.
What would happen if I Googled you?
Because you know, that’s what bosses do these days. And Human Resources people. And your co-workers.
Just something to think about.
I bring this up because of a little thing that happened to someone I know. He’s a storyboard artist too.
We’ll call him Mr. X (because I’m so damn original).
Turns out Mr. X was the subject of a post on some fairly famous comic book artist’s blog recently. (At least I think he’s fairly famous. I’m not really up on my ‘famous comic book artists’.)
Anyway, Famous Comic Artist Guy found the online portfolio of Mr. X. And lo and behold, it had some of his old storyboard drawings on it. Apparently Famous Comic Artist Guy used to do storyboards too.
So he called out Mr. X in his post and people left all sorts of nasty comments about Mr. X because he was passing off this guy’s work as his own.
On the Internet.
Pretty dumb, huh?
Lesson One: Don’t steal other people’s stuff and pass it off as your own. Ever. You’re a complete tool if you do.
Lesson Two: If you don’t mind being a tool and still want to steal someone else’s work and pass it off as your own…don’t post it on the friggin’ Internet! You will be found out. And you’ll be found out if you do it in the ‘real world’ too. Eventually. (Tool!)
But the story doesn’t end there.
Mr. X showed up in the comments to defend himself. He was a little high and mighty about things, but basically explained that this was all a horrible mistake and his “assistant” (possible translation: girlfriend) posted those up by mistake.
He had them as reference on his computer, files got lumped together, it got posted, bla bla bla. Long story short, he apologized to the guy on the phone and everything was cool.
I’m sure fans of Famous Comic Artist Guy still don’t quite believe Mr. X. Which is understandable. I doubt I’d believe him either.
If I didn’t know him.
But I do.
And I do believe it was a mistake. Why? Because despite some organizational issues, Mr. X is an exceptional storyboard artist. He has no possible reason to pass off someone else’s work as his own. He has a huge body of work and it just didn’t make sense.
So I believe it was mistake.
The damage is done.
Other comic book forums picked up the story and linked to it. That original post is still on Famous Comic Artist Guy’s blog.
And guess what happens when I Google Mr. X?
All that stuff will be there for a long time. He can’t really erase it. His name is kinda muddy and tarnished. His trust factor is way down.
Because of one stupid mistake.
Lesson Three: Do your portfolio site yourself or check and double check everything before your site goes live. Mistakes like that last a long time on the Internet.
Don’t trust your Internet presence with anyone else.
Especially assistant/intern-girlfriend/boyfriends. : )
Now go Google yourself and report back.
Read the Storyboard Blog by RSS Feed or by email in case I do ever decide to post pictures of me licking someone’s face.