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Blog Transparency can be scary.

So, I've decided to add a bit of transparency to my life. I spend a good chunk of my week networking with people in my line of business and people interested in like-minded pursuits of happiness. Perhaps this web-based venue will allow me to me expand the reach of that network by allowing you, the reader, to get to know me just a wee bit better. I'll let you decide if my transparency is enough to convince you to contact me. Ball's in your court.

I know I'm a bit nervous about this endeavor. Especially out here where everyone in the world can participate in the conversation. By "transparency", I mean "sharing your thoughts, opinions, and selected events of your life openly and freely". Some of the things that cause me to be a bit worried about my personal Blog Transparency include:

  • The Internet is an amazing archiving machine (see also: the Wayback machine). Before you start blogging, should you have to listen to some kind of Blogger's Miranda Rights? "Anything you write can, and will, be held against you in whatever public forum we deem fit".

  • Where do you draw the Transparency line? How transparent is too transparent? How personal is too personal? There are a lot of phishing predators out there. By including personal details (like my age and the events of my birthday party, say), it would seem that I will be exposing myself more than others.

  • What happens when I say something stupid or, rather, forget to say something smart? What happens when I unknowingly offend someone? What happens when I make a spelling or grammar error (there are likely 4 or 5 in this first post)?

  • When should you write about rumor and conjecture you hear on the streets? When should you not write about something?

  • I'm not a writer and I don't play one on TV. I'm much better in person. Really. The "me" that you see here is but a small, and in many ways skewed, sampling of the "me" that I actually am.

  • I don't know if I truly have the time to devote to this activity and to keep the quality of the posts high enough for your enjoyment (I am a slow writer). Let's get started and see where it takes us...

In the final analysis, I don't think any of that stuff matters - I can figure it out along the way. In fact, it is because of that stuff that Blog Transparency is important. Being truly transparent means that you don't have to "spin" or pretend to be someone that you aren't. It means that people see all sides of you - the good, bad, stupid, and the ugly. If someone decides to contact me after reading about some of my not so pretty sides, it means that they actually want to converse with me and not just the external face that most of us project to the world. This makes the contact more valuable to all parties. Transparency improves my network in both quantity and quality.

Ultimately, transparency is truth. Truth matters.

Many have blogged about the value and importance of Blog Transparency. Some examples:

My blog is about things that matter to me. Some of those things include:

  • My family, friends, and loved ones

  • Venture Capital & Private Equity

  • Technology Trends

  • Entrepreneurship

  • Open Source Software

  • Cooking

  • Books

  • Mountaineering & Hiking

  • Motorcycles

  • Golfing

  • Photography

  • SCUBA Diving

  • And, of course, Electronic Gadgets

I hope you will find an occasional nugget of interest to you.

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  1. Guy Kawasaki chats with Seth Godin...

    While discussing Seth Godin’s latest book, Small is the New Big, I particularly enjoyed Seth’s answer to Guy’s question:

    Question: What are the five things that enabled you to be successful?
    Answer: If we define success as the abili...

  2. [...] In a fit of Blog Transparency, I thought it would be fun to create a logo page of the companies that I have invested my money, time, and effort into, and show their results. I limited the list to private companies in which I purchased stock. I’m quite pleased with the result. It’s interesting to note the doubles — companies that showed up twice: EMC, Mohr Davidow Ventures, Sequoia Capital, and NEA. [...]

  3. [...] This post is decidedly personal. More Blog Transparency for you. [...]

  4. [...] 15, 2006 Personal , Startups , Technology , Venture Capital 4 Comments In a fit of Blog Transparency, I thought it would be fun to create a logo page of the companies that I have invested my money, [...]

  5. [...] post has significant Transparency, and I’m trying to keep it fun and fresh. Something more like a resume can be found in my [...]


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