Do you find it difficult to distinguish your different online personas from each other? I have several different Tumblrs, each slightly different (and more risque) than the other. I'm trying to decide should I keep them separate or if I should consolidate them. I'm trying to become an illustrator IRL and I don't want something to come back and bite me. Do you worry about that? Thanks!
I don’t really have different online personas. I am Katie West everywhere. The only difference is I have different profiles for my students to follow; however, I’m obviously not hiding anything from them because a quick Google search returns my regular internet profiles. I separate them because my teaching doesn’t have much to do with what I do here, and vice versa. I get the impression a bunch of my students may follow both, and that’s fine with me.
In terms of this tumblr, I don’t have others that are more risque; I only have others that are more private where I am super emotional and others where I try to write.
But to your point, I made a decision very early on that I would own all of my choices. Which means if ten years ago I felt like putting a naked picture of myself on the internet, I couldn’t regret it, or be disappointed if it prevented me in some way from doing other things in my life somewhere down the road. And I’ll be honest: it has prevented me from doing things in my life. Things I really wanted to do. But I made that decision and I don’t regret it. I rationalize it by thinking, if someone doesn’t want me to do something because I’m naked on the internet, then I don’t want to work with that person. Or, if this company doesn’t want to hire me because I’m naked on the internet, then that is not the company for me. It is a privileged way to look at things since at the moment I am employed and I’m lucky that my employer happens to accept the things I do on my own time. But at the same time, I wish it wasn’t a matter of privilege and that the things we did on our own time didn’t affect the perception others have of our ability to do a job. It would be nice if our private lives could stay separate from our public lives, but it’s no longer the way the world works. The internet is public and anything you post there is considered available for family, employers, future employers, etc., to judge you by—often without ever having to meet you or even speak to you. Thems the breaks.
So you might want to keep your porn blog under a pseudonym and save your real name for the work you do to prove to people why they should hire you.
I hope that when I’m an old lady I’m one of those cool old ladies that young people want to photograph and interview and ask things like, “What is the secret to a good life?” and “How do you stay so ridiculously good looking?” and “What is the best pizza you’ve ever had?”