Becoming Professional: A Blog

Google Before You Speak?

Posted on: July 27, 2010


A motivational poster saying "Google Before You Tweet is the New Think Before You Speak"

My boyfriend sent me this link a few days ago. I wish I had checked it out sooner. As far as I can tell it was originally posted here, though it was sent to me via yayeveryday.com.

This poster is reminiscent of an SAT analogies question. Google before you _______: Think before you Speak. But is this true? Is Googling really the new thinking? Is Tweeting the new speaking? Besides the obvious change from a non-digital form of the action, we’ve replaced thinking and speaking with brand names. As much as I love Google and Twitter, they are companies. Thinking and speaking are my own creation, yes, defined by a word, but at least I don’t have to follow it with a (r) or ™ sign. Or pay royalties. But this might just be a mountain out of a mole-hill. After all, when I sneeze, I ask for a Kleenex.

There is the obvious applicability to personal branding. Tweeting is very public, like many forms of speaking, particularly when gabbing with the rumor-spreaders at work. Rumor-spreaders probably love Twitter, too, since it makes it easier to share the gossip. Only unlike just thinking before you speak, we now have lots of tools to be sure that not only is the information we’re sharing accurate, it is applicable. For instance, before posting this blog, I Googled the phrase “Google before you Tweet” and discovered that most of the mentions of this poster on the first few pages of results are just that, an image of the poster with little or no comment or analytical response.

So yes, please Google your topic before you Tweet about it. Be sure that you don’t jump into the middle of a conversation without knowing the details. It helps to prevent you from looking the fool. But please remember that Googling is not thinking. Googling happens on your computer; thinking happens in your brain. Both are useful.

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3 Responses to "Google Before You Speak?"

Not only is Googling not thinking, it can also prevent thinking. Say you are having a conversation with a colleague, and you have an idea. You could either Google it later to see if someone else has already done it; or just suggest it then and there!

If you do the former, and find out someone else has already thought of it, you will be discouraged from having ideas in the future, because you assume that everything has already been done. But so what if you blurt it out and only find out later that someone has beaten you to it? You have still Had An Idea, and begun to pursue it. That’s good practice for the next one. Google can wait – speak first!

Great point, Pete. It’s better to have thought and been proven wrong/not original, then to have never thought at all!

[…] says “no” Kate The Professional recently posted on the idea that “Google before you Tweet” is the new “Think before you speak”.  I agree in the narrow sense that you should be aware of the facts before you go wading in with […]

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Who Am I?

I am a Digital Native who is trying to puzzle out what exactly that means. I share my thoughts on social media, digital business models, and PR here on this blog.

I am currently getting my Masters in Digital Marketing from Hult International Business School, having gotten my B.S. in Marketing from Arizona State University. Everything is on track and I am making headway towards my dream: World Domination... or being a productive, helpful citizen and marketer. Whichever comes first.

Don't hesitate to get in touch. I Tweet daily at @KateDavids and also have a science fiction and fantasy blog (maskedgeek.wordpress.com) and Twitter (@Masked_Geek).

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