Branding MySelf has a long click list so that you, yes you, can create a little gizmo to put on your profiles and websites so that everyone can see how you brand yourself. Or rather, how you define yourself through brands. Here’s what I’d look like if I went wild:


I know it’s all in fun (kinda) but these things really bug me. For one, they’re not clickable, so that if I see that icon I can’t click it and get to your page, I can’t click the flickr to get to flickr. More than that, though, it’s a weird hodgepodge way to define yourself as the combination of products you don’t get a say in creating.

To say nothing of all the things that aren’t there at all. In music, for instance, I can brand myself as a fan of the Libertines or U2, but that’s about it on my genre, and neither of them are in my top 50. I can mark myself as having a Fujifilm camera, but not an Olympus even though that’s a nicer camera. I can choose Johnny Depp as a favorite actor, but I don’t get any actresses to choose from at all. I get Pepsi, but no Diet Pepsi. Baileys but no Glenfiddich.

But the fact that the site’s there at all, with its long strange lists of almost-random (and obvious Deutsch-o-centric) choices for which icons you want to associate yourself with, and the fact that these things are popping up all over the net, shows once again how people are more and more eager and willing to identify themselves in terms of taste and brands.

What bothers me most of all is that it shows that it’s not enough to merely USE the products now, we need to advertise for them as well. Ok, need is overstated, but I just don’t get the hunger to mark myself as a Mac using, Toyota driving, apple and orange juice drinking, chocolate and licorice eating, Solitaire playing Pisces where e’re my internet travels take me. But then, I identified with William Gibson’s Cayce in Pattern Recognition who never wore anything with logos and obsessively sanded the buttons of her jeans until the brand name was gone. I loved the scene where she hyperventilated in the Tommy Hilfiger section of the department store.  I’m not so clinical, but I figure if I’ve paid for a product already, they ought to pay ME to advertise it for them.

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