(The following post has some strong language elements. Though censored, reader discretion is advised)
My videos have been the face of my job search since I made the decision to produce them at the start of 2012. I produced those videos (including the recently completed “David Needs A Job” series on YouTube this year) to inform as many people as possible about my job search.
Before making the decision to create and upload these videos, I knew I was risking some backlash from others for the sake of being mean and vicious. I’ll admit something right now: my face and look is not exactly social media friendly. Sure enough, not long after my videos appeared on YouTube, a (thankfully) small number of smart-aleck comments appeared: pensioner baby boomer whose feeble mind could no longer learn, poor b?????d, etc. Some comments I just delete outright and then the poster is blocked, others I do approve and then reply to correct them on a few points made (such as being a pensioner…I am 17 years away, thank you!), and then the poster is blocked. The last thing I need to get into is a lengthy p???ing match with some online troll that would be publicly displayed for all prospective employers to see.
Not all these personal attacks are so easily deflected. One wiseacre decided to give my link for my 1000 video (the one I was too depressed to write about the 1000th day of my unemployment so I v-logged it instead) to an autism support site, claiming the author (me) in the video was suffering from Asperger’s Syndrome which is a form of autism. The galling part of all of this was the person in charge of the support group took it as fact and posted it with the caption “Example of Asperger’s Syndrome on the Unemployed”.
Before I continue, I must stress that I do not suffer from autism or any other psychological disorder. I’m not on any prescribed medication for any disorders of any kind. The nervousness from being on camera in my videos may make me appear a bit off in my approach but it’s because I hate being in front of a camera (yet I do this in order to try to find work).
The video link, with the caption mentioned, was on that site for three months and it would have been there a lot longer had I not stumbled across it by accident. After I contacted the person in charge of the support group about the misuse of my video, the link was removed and I received an apology for any misunderstandings given. The problem, however, is just how many potential employers did a Google on my name and stumbled across that autism support site and link? How many potential employment chances got blown away just because of some prank pulled?
I will probably never know the answer to either question, but I walked away with a lesson that I want to share with you: if you decide to release videos for public viewing, be sure to ensure their usage is as intended. The last thing you want is for someone to see you portrayed in a way that is not only inaccurate and unflattering, but also damaging to your personal credibility. This is very important when looking for work since your credibility is highly regarded when being considered for employment.
Thanks for reading!