BOOK REVIEW: What Happens in Vegas Stays on Youtube by Erik Qualman

Whatever Happens in Vegas Stays in Vegas is a quick reference guide to managing your reputation in a digital world. The book is written in an easy-to-read accessible style with plenty of relevant and interesting case studies or ‘Learning moments’ and ‘lesson’ as Qualman calls them. You can easily read this book in an evening loan payment. It is ideal for people who want a general overview and gives some valuable recommendations for protecting your digital footprint/shadow working as a freelancer.

The first chapter professes 36 new rules of reputation. My favourites are:

11. Complain = Digital Pain
Qualman says “Complaining is negative energy and the enemy of greatness. Remember: Anything you post online is in “ink”, and not “pencil.” Do you want your digital footprint littered with complaints?

This is a difficult recommendation to swallow. I understand that you don’t want your digital footprint to sound as though you are a “moaning minny” but equally should we let brands get away with unsatisfactory customer service? There are loads of case studies about how companies have turned round their customer service for damage limitation to their brand. Dell is a great example and their customer service on social media is excellent. Don’t we have the right to inform our networks about poor service? But I take the point that you don’t want your stream littered with negative comments.

15. Words: Measure twice, post once “A good carpenter measures twice and hammers once. We too must read our words twice and post just once. While it may take extra time in the short-term, it will save time in the long term.” I mostly like this as a good friend of mine always says “Measure twice cut once.” It’s very good advice. In fact, the advice that is lacking is never post under the influence of alcohol.

18. Multitasking = Mistakes “Neuroscience reveals that our brain doesn’t have the ability to multi-task like a computer. Rather we switch between tasks requiring our brain to decide which task is more important. Time and energy costs are associated with each of these switches.” This is so true. I lost quite a few amends today that I was making to an important document because I was ‘multi-taking’. All that work went to waste.

Chapter 2 is ‘Lessons Learned’ which offer real examples from the business world and also personal social media interactions. Examples include cyberbullying and texting while driving to the antics of Justin Beiber and Prince Harry and how they spread on social media. It also gives a number of case studies of people who have ended up in prison as a result of their postings.

Chapter 3 is ’15 Digital Reputation Tools’ which is a great list of online tools such as Google Alerts, Kred, Klout and Social Mention that are available (many free) to help people manage their reputation and privacy online.

Chapter 4 ‘Protecting Your Identity’ provides 20 tips for protecting yourself against identity fraud. Some of these are common sense, but a couple surprised me, especially this “Hotel magnetic key cards contain all the personal information you provided to the front desk. Cut the cards in half and destroy them.” Is this true? It’s awful if it is. It’s also incredibly wasteful to cut the cards up. Surely something needs to be done about this.

Chapter 5 ‘Putting Your Best Face Forward’ is 20 tips to be a video star. In my opinion this is the weakest chapter and probably not overly relevant to many readers. Unless you want to become a vlogger of course.

Chapter 6 ‘Preventing Cyberbullying’ is a succinct chapter with 14 tips. It also provides links to some helpful online resources. This is a chapter that will be particularly relevant to any parents with teenage children or indeed younger.

Chapter 7 ‘Keeping Your Family Safe Online’ is another relatively thin chapter with some sensible brief recommendations. Chapter 8 is great. It provides a series of questions to help organisations, teams and families to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of social networks. See if you can find my ‘Digital Stamp’ in Chapter 9. It’s quite weak compared to many of the others haha.

Overall a great quick reference guide to managing your reputation online.

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