In the wake of the Cambridge Analytica and Facebook scandal about the secret as well as nefarious sharing of personal and private information/details – this augmented by yesterday’s MSE’s Money Tips newsletter suggesting that we all inspect our Facebook details, and the more general advice here and there that we all just delete our Facebook accounts – I decided to have a check online about what information comes up when I type my name into Google Search [accepting the probable irony of that action].
Yes, that is the reason for this self-search.
I had a number of surprises. The first was that I had two poems published in Wild Goose Poetry Review in the Summer of 2017 here. I do of course remember submitting these, but I do not recall, and can find no record of, being contacted about the poems having been accepted for publication – and I am quite good at keeping email records of correspondence. Not that this is an issue: I was delighted to see these, even if over a year late.
The other two [did I not state there were just the three surprises?] were less welcome but by no means problematic, or worse, dangerous. The first was a reference to my having co-authored a Poetry Anthology for a New Century Readers series, which I haven’t – though I did have that momentary if ridiculous wonder if this is something else I have forgotten of late, or if my teachings ideas had been appropriated by someone else. I think I might have even accepted this book’s existence regardless of my inability to remember being in any way involved until I read that its purpose was to prepare students for Key Stage 3 English SATs, something I would not have done as a publishing venture under any circumstances. I taught Key Stage 3 English and SATs preparation, because I had to, and very often challenged the outrageously stupid marks regularly awarded [or not] to students, because I had to. But I never wrote a text for these. And I never ever marked a SATs examination. This was the Devil’s work.
The second was a reference to my eBook Writing with Hammers, a satirical novel about my teaching experiences of over 30 years. I wasn’t surprised to see a reference to this, as it is available online, free here, but because out of all the chapters and pages there are, and even in this google ‘selection’ of pages to view, the following piece of narrative is the one that gets quoted in the search paragraph,
Other than this, I didn’t find anything else of concern, mild or major, and I am yet to decide if that is in any way a disappointment.