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Sunday, 25 October 2009

1000Heads will roll...

1000Heads, "the word of mouth people" (I've got a word of mouth for them) have murdered my You Tube channel. God knows this blog post has been festering within me for a long while now, but I had thought the situation had been rectified. I have spent time, money and energy on this nightmare but have come to realise there is no solution other than my channel's suicide. I shall here explain, and hope that Google search results prioritise this for people who might otherwise read 1000 Heads' "Respect" section, in particular Rule No. 6: "We protect privacy and permission". (snapshot above)

In all my previous posts, if I ever mentioned PR and blogging/ YouTube, it was probably with faintly triumphant derision. It seemed to me that the little people were calling the shots - I was rather naive. As uninformed individuals, we are in fact exceptionally vulnerable novices and far more disposable than a corporation.

Not long ago, 1000 Heads were asked to draw up a PR showcase for Aussie haircare, and I and several other randomly selected blogs were chosen as "Aussie Angels". The whole convoluted "treasure hunt" seemed terribly infantile and dreary to me but in any case I was unable to make that event so who knows. A few days later, out of curiosity, I checked out the website and was horrified to see my full name listed. Every other blogger had their stage name, and then, starkly contrasting, there was my full name! And, unlike every other stage name link, mine had linked to my You Tube. I was horrified. It was a catastrophe. No-one in my real life has been told about my channel, no-one. Suddenly it's the very first result if anyone happened to look me up.

I had already written and tried to contact by mobile phone these ["word of mouth"] people, with no luck. However I had the wisdom to go to the organ-grinder instead. Aussie haircare is owned, like so many drugstore household names, by Proctor & Gamble. It was easy enough to find the correct representative. Miraculously, I then hear from the ["word of mouth"] people.

I am confident that from henceforth they did their best, just as I am aware that this whole disaster was highly unlucky - i.e that it hit someone who was determined to keep their channel secret - and that all it took was a lapse of concentration. People are human and mistakes happen, but do not hold yourself up as having sacred rules if you are as infallible as any other PR outfit.

Initially, PR speak was delivered to calm me down and assure me that the google results were certainly not permanent and were being erased with ease. Days passed by with no change, yet still assurances were offered up. My case was pushed from one individual to another, and none seemed aware of what had gone on before. I would phone up (one went on holiday without warning), and I'd ask what was going on. I'd always have to give my reason for calling.

"Oh, a blog", a withering voice would intone.

Eventually I decided to take matters into my own hands and seek out a professional expert, who managed to stem the tide. However for some reason after a hiatus, the results are now back. I cannot get the expert I paid for to do the job again without paying again, and frankly, I am not going to start this fiasco anew.

I am upset to be deleting my account as it is the one that was once upon a time in the Metro newspaper and also the illustrious Gossmakeupartist gave the channel a priceless 'shoutout'. However I have been left with no option, due to the carelessness of sloppy data input and my own naive decision to not use an alias. I have certainly learnt that as an individual without the force of advertising, your details may be treated irresponsibly and it is wise to have a stage name behind your stage name for protection. Who knows, perhaps even a P.O Box isn't going too far. It seems that for the sake of free shampoo, I have cost myself all the videos I ever worked on and all the subscribers I painstakingly amassed.

I do appreciate that the company belatedly tried to undo the damage, but it is no good: Google results are tenacious, particularly with a YT result. The harm is irreversible and although I was happy that a brief reprieve was attained, allowing me to go on holiday and relax, the fact that it has now resurfaced will hopefully act as a beacon not only to 1000 Heads, who might be more diligent when dealing with personal information, but also to my fellow bloggers and You Tube reviewers - to see past the dazzle of being approached.

With a heavy heart, I will imminently bid adieu to my Ooglegail channel. I will probably be back "O, be some other name!/What's in a name? that which we call a rose / By any other name would smell as sweet". Indeed.

28 comments:

  1. I must be missing something as I can't see what the problem is? Soon the post that had you name on will be irrelevant and no one will even read it never mind try and find you what am I missing?

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  2. haha if only! Although the original post is gone, the imprint is still there. Anyone from my personal or professional life can look up my name (eg if I wanted to apply to a new job or anything really) and they will be directed to my YT channel. Too mortifying for words.

    I think this blog entry is pretty sloppy but that's the basic idea...

    Xxxx

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  3. I am sorry you feel that way. I would be proud of what I had achieved on youtube :0)

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  4. I feel scared people will judge me for being shallow and silly :((

    Although the tragedy is that I was quite proud. I wish I had been allowed to continue as I was. xxxxx

    Thank you

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  5. I would say commited and eloquent, informative and dedicated.You have no need to feel shallow or silly as it shows another side to you. In interviews they always ask what interests do you have and you could have easily said I blog and vlog about beauty items nothing shallow in that it is called maintenance and if you are concerned about your appearance it shows you would also been a person who would see the job through and care about the finished result of anything you started.
    Have another think about closing your account I fear you will always regret it :0)

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  6. hmm I try to think that way but I know most people would assume it's shallow, vain and frivolous. I know, so unfair. But for my stress levels I have to just sacrifice the channel.

    Hopefully I will start afresh some day and maybe even get my subscibers back. God knows it took me a while to build the channel up, this isn't a decision I took lightly. I invested in having it saved but ultimately it was doomed from the moment they leaked my full name.

    xxxx

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  7. As a long time anonymous blogger, I totally appreciate your love of being able to do all this anonymously - and having the veil of anonymity whisked away without your permission is hugely annoying so no wonder you're furious with them.

    You shoudn't worry about your wonderful videos being seen as 'shallow' or anything though - 99% of the girls I see doing make up videos seem like smart intelligent women - it's just another side to our personality being interested in make up.

    xo

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  8. Gail, I've struggled with the same issues, I do not put my name let alone mobile number on my website like normal make up artists and do not give those details even to prospective clients. Bookings and consultations are all done through email or I call them from my ex-directory number. In the future I may change my mind but at the moment I am sticking to this decision.

    It may seem over cautious to those who have no idea what it's like (see above comments) to receive emails from people who want to hurt you and your family for no other reason than their amusement. There are also those who would take it further than just emailing to real harassment at your door/workplace or by phone.

    Personally you have my vote to close your channel for the moment. It should be your decision whether you reveal your name and to have that taken out of your hands just would leave me shocked and a little frightened about it. Do whatever you think best and come back stronger when you're ready. You can always re upload your old videos and go from there.

    xxxxx

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  9. its a shame this has happened and i hope you do come back,your one of the down to earth girls that i greatly appreciate.

    love Carolanne aka foxycleox xxx

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  10. @ Ondine

    Thank you, I couldn't put it better myself - that's exactly it... xxxx


    @OxfordJasmine

    Oh wow you're such a consolation to me! I wish I'd bothered you sooner whilst I was suffering alone. I will lose all my vids as they're prob not backed up but that's the price I must pay. I am so glad for your words of support, and so lucky to count you as a friend. Thank you xxxxxx and PS Congrats on being in The Independent on sunday - yet another string to your bow!!! (saw it on Misschievous' blog.)

    @Foxycleox

    Thanks Carolanne, your sweet messages are always precious to me and I hope to come back - it's just so depressing having to start right at the bottom again :((
    xxxxx

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  11. For a lot of people creating YT videos is just a fun hobby where they get to talk about something they enjoy and forget about their 'real' problems. So, I can totally see why you are upset that people may see this and judge you by it. I will miss your videos though!! Adele x

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  12. I came across you video by accident but I am enthralled!
    Ive never understood people that put them selves out there and make videoes to then cry that someone knows they do it - its on the internet - its broadcast for everyone to see - you can choose to keep your videos private and share with friends only.
    Youtube is there so people are viewed and get excited over how many subs and ratings you get - yes search engines are used to find out more about people - Ive googled prospective girlfriends before - you never know do you!
    But I dont think making a few videos about hobbies or makeup are anything to feel ashamed of or indeed to delete your account over. If you wanted to be a provate individual then putting yourself on youtube isnt the best way to go.
    At the end of the day if people really want to find out about you there are enough ways and means. I make videos about gardening - my work colleages would take the piss but well its my hobby. Have courage to stand your ground.

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  13. Hey Gail! It's so sad, that You have to close Your channel! :( I really love your great videos and blogposts. But I must say - I totally understand You. You have named the reasons in previous comments here, why I don't want to even start on Youtube. I'm afraid of reactions in my small community. I try to hide my idendity in my blog as well. It's really hard though- I don't want to publish full-face pictures and it's quite annoying, cause some things are hard to explain without full-face photos. Maybe one day I will be more courageous in blogging. I have sometimes been quite outspoken about my beatyproducts obsession and I've experienced, that lots of people have disapproving attitude toward this kind of hobby.:(
    Best regards from Silja
    (sorry about my bad English)

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  14. @ Adele

    Hi, thanks for understanding, and I hope it time to start again if poss... watch this space xxxxx

    @Anonymous

    I know it must seem quixotic, or an oxymoron, and so on... But, it's one thing to be found by a fellow make-up addict, and quite another to be randomly found by someone trying to gauge you- and who would find an interest in the beauty world undermines any intelligence and marks you out as a bimbo or whatever. I have to assume people will judge me, sadly. You could never have found my videos by name before, nor was I famous enough to have inevitably been named by the media, so there was no reason to have disturbed the balance. 1000 Heads media have wrecked all my hard work. To quote Great Gatsby which just came to me (haha) "they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money of their vast carelessness, or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made".

    I do know that perhaps you are right and there is a measure of cowardice or perhaps even pretence on my part, but I should be entitled to control which facets of my personality are shown and to whom. This right has been taken away by a stupid error of slovenly work. That's how I feel, and why I feel deleting and restarting is the only way to get back to where I was (hopefully) x Thank you, that was interesting and I appreciate it!

    @Silja
    Yes exactly! I don't know if I'm being harsh towards people in my real-life who might find me, but I just hate the very idea!! Thanks so much xx

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  15. Sorry to heatr about what has happened to you Gail - I can totally understand why you feel the way you do. This for me highlights the fact that often PR's do not "get" the fact that we are not actually beauty journalists - we have real lives and real jobs, and that we have to present different personas at work than we do on the beauty community - I would be really embarassed if my work colleagues saw me on you tube. Thats not because I am asham,ed about my channel, just because I have to present a different persona at work, and the two things should be kept separate.

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  16. Oogle...can you email me please - I may be able to help. Don't delete your channel before you let me try and do something please. I'm at britishbeautyblogger@gmail.com. x

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  17. @Mizzworthy

    Yes - you put it so eloquently! That's exactly what I was trying to convey. Thank you so much for understanding xxxxxx

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  18. Adieu, mon ange! A la prochaine.. Tima x

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  19. @ haha Tima this really does feel like my funeral now... thank you, we will still be in touch regardless xxxxx

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  20. Gail,
    I feel very sorry about all that, I truly am as I enjoyed your "company" on youtube and all the love you spread:)

    Sometimes I wish I did not have degrees in literature and languages and instead of that, studied law, I would be able to help then...


    Much love and take care,
    Agnes

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  21. @ laitae

    Thank you, that was such a very sweet compliment xxxx

    I hope it will be possible for me to return at some point. And in the meantime, to continue my blog of course. x

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  22. I know that nothing is private online-- but I totally understand where you're coming from. I have blogs and other online stuff, but I want people to find them because they're interested in the subject matter-- NOT because they're randomly googling my name!

    And as sure as I am that makeup and beauty are not shallow or silly, the sad fact is that there are many people who do think so. Yes, they are SO wrong, but I don't want to have to explain it to them!

    Ms M a.k.a. Laurore44 (yep, I changed it for privacy reasons :P )

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  23. @ Ms M (!)

    fIRSTLY, when did you get a blog?? I'm going to have to look at that!

    Yes exactly, it is so different - I honestly do not understand how people could fail to spot the distinction?? The internet is gigantic enough that having an alias is more than adequate protection to ensure you could never randomly be found, esp in a niche area like beauty reviewing.

    If I got so fantastically popular that my name was leaked, that's unavoidable. But to have to leave because of someone's careless slip up is just very depressing. Oh well. The anger has subsided now... xxxxx Thank you xxxx

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  24. Hi Gail

    We're sorry that you feel your anonymity was compromised; this was an inadvertent error, not a deliberate action.

    The reason we publish our ethics is that we seek to maintain the highest standards at all times. Unfortunately, mistakes do occasionally occur, and in those situations we do our best to rectify them. The last time we spoke, my understanding was that everything had been resolved, so it's a shame you feel you have no choice but to take down your channel.

    But of course, if you wish to discuss the issue further, please don't hesitate to contact me.

    All the best
    Thom

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  25. Hello Thom

    Yes it did seem to have been resolved, the results came up clear for a number of weeks and the results were blocked. But now suddenly the Uncover Aussie site has moved to front page results. I do not understand how, but it seems Google is a very sensitive and tenacious search engine - One false move and Google remembers it, probably for ever - or at least til the Uncover Aussie site is dissolved. Handling sensitive information like names is one that ought to have been handled with express care.

    As you know, I was particularly sensitive about this and after all attempts proved insufficient, the inevitable has happened...

    I was very glad by your personal efforts to help out and am hopeful that this example will prove useful when explaining your ethical code to 1000 Head staff in future. I know I have learnt a valuable lesson and now appreciate the need for extra vigilance.

    Thanks
    & best wishes

    Gail

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  26. Gail, I'm so sorry that you had to go through all that and even more sorry that you're shutting your channel down.....just when you've surpassed the 1,000 subscriber mark. You know I've been cheering you on about that all this time. :)

    I do understand your annoyance/anger about your anonymity being compromised. All because of a slip-up by some PR personnel! There are some out there who wouldn't mind their real identity being known to the whole world but there are many of us who prefer to keep our internet existence separate from our real lives. We have the right to decide that for ourselves!

    Do come back to Youtube soon. You know that your many fans will be waiting to welcome you back with open arms. :)

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  27. Thanks, hopefully I can rebuild myself and be extra cautious in future. xxxxx I really appreciate your kind words.

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  28. My darling Gail.....I've been here, just super busy and not having a moment to myself. Please lets keep in touch, I will await your return. P.S.... I'm going to be in the UK visiting Lizzclare and Anna next week. Any shops/boutiques that have original, classy, vintagy vibes that I should not miss out on? BTW, I made a purchase you might appreciate, too embarassed to mention it on here....$$$$! Very sorry to read/hear about this assault on your privacy. Chin up bella:) xoxoNadia

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