I’m surprised I haven’t blogged about this yet, but as some of you know, I have this “vanity folder” in my RSS reader. It’s an idea I got from elsewhere quite some time ago, but essentially you search Google News, Google Blogs, Technorati, etc, for your name, domain name, company name and so forth. Each of these result sets are available as an RSS feed which you then add to your reader.
Every time someone says something about you or related to you (according to your search conditions) it’ll appear in your reader. One instance this came in useful is when someone misspelt my name in their article and I was able to be notified, notify them, and have it fixed.
So while it might feel a bit egotistical to check out who’s talking about you, sometimes it can help you rectify small, or even large, errors about you, your company or your brand. It helps you find out who’s interested in what you’re doing which could help you expand your professional or social network.
And sometimes it just shows you an interesting trend, like the Spanish and Bosnians are interested enough to translate the 10 Principles of the PHP Masters - I haven’t found (or looked especially hard for) a French or German version yet.
In related news, Twitter has acquired Summize, a service that allowes you to track words and phrases across the public twitter timeline. I’m currently using TwitterSpy with my jabber account and every time someone mentiones my name, company name or keywords of interest to me (i.e. streaming) I get a jabber message. This allows me to find other Twitter users that have similar interests, and I’ve already started following a couple of “strangers” after finding them through TwitterSpy!
How do you track yourself on the Internet? Have I missed some great tool? Drop me a line in the comments section!