How to Secure Your Child’s Digital Future

March 10, 2015 · Filed Under Branding, Domain Names, Online Reputation Management · Comments Off on How to Secure Your Child’s Digital Future 

A few days ago we had an interesting conversation on Facebook discussing what you should do (digitally-wise) once your baby is born. It started from this meme:

When your kids are born meme

 

… and developed into us sharing what we (might) do to make our kid’s future career easier. The Internet has changed our personal careers paths dramatically: Most employees look for prospective interviewees’ web records even before setting up the actual meeting.

So can we help our kids with their personal reputation management?

One of the most obvious things to do once your spouse and you agree on the baby’s name is to register the exact-match domain (if possible) for your kid not to have to worry about it when he/she grows up.

But really how crazy should you go about securing your kid’s digital future?

Well, personal reputation management is huge nowadays, and conversely so is identity hijacking. If we can in any way help our children to own their online identities, why not?

After all, you have two obvious choices:

  • Make sure your kid has a very wide-spread common first and last name (In this case, you don’t have to worry about your kid’s online reputation: There are hundreds of people sharing the same search results page) OR
  • Make sure your kid’s name is more or less unique and when he / she grows up, they will be easy to get found in whatever search engine we are going to use then.

In the latter case, securing important domains and usernames may be a good idea actually.

Helping your kids control their web identities may be crucial for their future. Dan Gillmor has put it very well:

[We] are partly who others say we are. That’s a key reason why each of us needs to be one of the voices (preferably the most prominent) defining us. To the extent that they live public lives in any way – and like it or not, it’s getting harder not to be public in some way – tomorrow’s adults will need an online home that they control. They need an online home, a place where they tell the world who they are and what they’ve done, where they post their own work, or at least some of it.

Dan Gillmore quote

What to Register

A domain is an investment and when you deal with kids, this investment is for at least 10-15 years to come.

Domains are not expensive nowadays but seriously, there’s no way you can register ALL of the variations. There are lots of them! And the list is going to be growing.

So which one to secure?

I suggest going with .com

I have no idea what the Internet is going to be in 15 years but I think .com domains will remain as common and popular as they are now or were 5 years ago.

If there is any other top level domains that fit particularly well, why not consider them as well. I’d register ann.smarty once .smarty becomes a top level domain, for example.

What to Do with That Domain

Keeping it registered is already very thoughtful of you but we know that sites are more valuable than domains.

There’s no reason to keep your kid’s domain stagnant. Installing WordPress and keeping it hosted is easy and cheap. Here’s one of the easiest guides on starting a simple blog: Your kid’s blog is just a couple of steps away.

Updating a blog is easy, you can even do it via email: So you can simply use it to collect photos and memories (Like that email address idea we started from. The difference is that hosting everything on your own sites means you actually own the collection).

What Else to Secure?

Owning your domain name is only one step. Today’s digital identity is spread across multiple social media platforms – owning all of those is also essential to better control your child’s identity.

Do we know which ones are there to stay in 10 or more years?

Will there be Twitter? – Hopefully yes!

Will there be Facebook? – It seems so…

Will there be Google Plus? – I wouldn’t count on that…

Will there be new ones? – Absolutely yes…

How to keep track of emerging social media platforms to register your kid’s name there?

Knowem has a cool service that lets you register your name on all imaginable social media platforms to secure them for your child.  They also offer a subscription service that will continue to secure your name on 20 new and emerging social networks every month, so you never miss out on any new ones:

KnowEm Social Branding Search Engine

Have you ever thought about securing your children’s digital future? Please share your thoughts in the comments!

KnowEm Turns 2 Years Old!

April 20, 2011 · Filed Under Announcements, Domain Names, KnowEm News · Comments Off on KnowEm Turns 2 Years Old! 

It seems like only yesterday I was up until 2 am making sure everything was ready for our launch. Myself and my partner, Barry Wise (@BarryWise), were about to launch our first product-related site.  It was a far stretch from the affiliate sites and client consulting work we had done in the past but we both thought it would work.

KnowEm was originally born from an off shoot of our site CheckUsernames.com which launched in February of 2009 after the original concept site by Jon Sykes was taken down. I was at IM Springbreak in Florida when I began to speak about the service of KnowEm and what we planned to do with a few other marketers.  One of the first people I spoke to was Brian Chappell (@BrianChappell).  When I told him what we were debating to do with username signups he thought it was a great idea, as did everyone else I spoke with.  We started development right away.

Partnerships and New Features

I have always believed that products need to evolve and adapt to keep fresh, new and useful. With that in mind it’s with great pleasure I announce a new feature that we are launching today:  Domain searching on over 200 tlds and gtlds, thanks to our new partnership with United Domains.  Now with one simple search you can look at over 200 domain names and social media usernames, all from one interface.

Where to Next?

Our company is at a bit of a turning point.  We have two more products on the burner for launch and are looking forward to releasing them to the public shortly. To give you an idea, we have always received the same request over and over again, “Now that I have all these social sites, how can I update them all?”  We are working on a dashboard solution to solve this problem, as well as a first-of-its-kind dashboard for businesses or agencies with small business clients to manage their local search information, social media presence and reputation from one centralized place.   As always both of these platforms will be available for white label.

Often Imitated Never Duplicated

We are still proud to be considered the number one trusted source for helping individuals, brands and companies secure their username across the ever growing social media landscape. We are still the only company that uses our own in-house on-shore staff to do this. Security and quality has always been our main focus.

On behalf of Myself, Barry, Richard, James and everyone else – thanks for a great 2 years and here is to exciting times ahead!

 

KnowEm Announces Domain Name Availability Checking

August 17, 2010 · Filed Under Announcements, KnowEm News · 2 Comments 

Today we are happy to announce that after a great many requests we have integrated a domain name search with our social media network username search.  This was a feature that we had talked about since launch and we are happy to finally be able to release it.

We also made a little interface change to our initial search page.  Rather then search our entire database of almost 500 social networks right from the start, we have limited the initial search to the top 20 social networks as well as the top 8 domain extensions. You will notice the tabs at the top which will take you into deeper searches of both, over 400 social media sites and over 40 different domain types.

Things have been very busy with everyone at team KnowEm.  So far our second year in business has been a very interesting one – from sending out a cease and desist to a company that copied our site right down the meta tags to hiring our 30th employee. We continue to grow and build the best set of tools for companies, individuals and brands to make sure they are secure on the social web.

We have another big announcement coming soon, so be sure to check back, become a fan on Facebook, or follow us on twitter so you will know when our next big announcement hits!

To your success,

Michael Streko & Barry Wise

Founders,
KnowEm LLC