Ms. Trammel asks if blogs can come back to bite you, and provides a number of examples of cases in which they have. This might be of particular interest to an academic in the job market, given that search committees inevitably google their best candidates. But this seems like a small nibble given the upside.
I would hate to think what someone would find if they googled me without my blog. At the very least, it provides me a right-of-reply for those who would intentionally or inadvertently put a less than favorable spin on my life. Indeed, I consider the blog in some ways to be an organ of public relations, a way of managing my personal identity.
I also use it as a way to communicate with my future self. I am candid and try to be extremely honest, both of which I believe to be less harmful to my future than some may think. If something in this record offends a future potential employer or friend, then they are offended by my past, and I am unlikely to want to have a continued relationship.
Because I am candid and honest here, I shape my actions in such a way that I won’t have too much to be ashamed of in my blog. Correct speech leads to correct action. This, in some ways, is what PR ought to be like for a corporation, but it almost never is.
(Why? Because humans are inherently good, and corporations are inherently evil, to oversimplify… Except for the company that the 40-year-old-me is trying to land a consulting gig with. You, sirs and madams, are beyond reproach.)