[Podcast Transcript]

Welcome to Screen Space your podcast about creating usable, accessible, effective, and efficient web, blog, and digital media design for the everyday (and non-expert) designer. This is episode 14 of Screen Space, “An interview with Sarah Brown on ‘Personal Branding and Online Identity Construction.’”

I am your host, Dr. Jennifer L. Bowie. I teach and conduct research in areas related to digital media, web, and blog design. Before we dive in to the interview, welcome to my new listeners from Manchester, UK; Vasteras, Sweden; and Bangor, Maine in the USA. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you come on back.

In this episode, we hear from Sarah Brown on “Personal Branding and Online Identity Construction.” This interview occurred at Computers and Writing 2010. Sarah has accomplished much since this interview. She graduated from the MA program at DePaul and is currently the Technology Administrator for DePaul’s College of Education. Next year she’ll also be teaching first-year writing at DePaul.  Congratulations, Sarah.

Please note: the transcript for this podcast is limited as I do not have time right now to transcribe the interview. If any of you want to, I welcome your help. I did provide a brief summary of the interview for my audience that has difficulty with sound.

Now, let’s hear what Sarah has to say about Personal Branding and Online Identity Construction.

Transcript/Summary of the interview

Sarah noticed that students were having issues switching between porfessi0onal and social identities online, especially with email, even after covering how to write professional emails in class.

First used leet speak to demonstrate how language can be used to create identity. Next, she had them analyze their personal identity on Facebook or the social networking platform they use. She finished by having them create a professional profile and identity on Linkedin, a professional networking space.

Her advice for the everyday web blog, and digital media designer:

Choose three terms that represent  who you want to be in that scenario (professionally, socially, whatever). From those three terms choose three images and build off of that. Make sure everything connects back to those three images or terms. Helps focus and direct your identity. These can then be applied to your e-folio or other such things, where you need a clear identity. The terms and images can help you even select typefaces and colors for your designs.

The three resources she suggests:

  1. Creative Commons for images and media
  2. Lifehacker for cool tips and ideas
  3. Google “design principles” or “design ideas” for a range from good, bad, and ugly

She suggests too that you Google yourself to see what is out there.


And that concludes that helpful interview with Sarah. Thanks Sarah, for such a great interview. If you would like to contact Sarah, feel free to email her at or check out the Center for Educational Technology blog, where you can find out more about what she’s up to. I’ll provide those as links in the transcript.

That wraps up episode 14: “An interview Sarah Brown on ‘Personal Branding and Online Identity Construction.’” Join me next week for the third of the Computers and Writing interviews. Justin Lewis will talk about “Copyleft, Digital Pirates, and Content Creation with Remixing.” Ahoy matey—it will be fascinating! Then, in two weeks, we have the last of the Computers and Writing interviews. I will interview Shaun Slattery on “Information Management Techniques for Writers.”

If you have questions, comments, or thoughts on what you want me to cover please send me an email at or check out the Screen Space blog— You can also follow @Screen_Space on Twitter for hints, tips, advice, news, and information on  designing websites, blogs, and other digital media texts. Also, check out the blog for a transcript of this podcast complete with links and resources.

Have fun and design well!

Screen Space is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. So, feel to send a copy anyone you think needs better personal branding, but don’t change the podcast, do give me and Screen Space credit, and don’t make any money off of it.

Screen Space’s opening music today is “African Dance” by Apa Ya off of Headroom Project and the closing music is “Survival” by Beth Quist off of “Shall We Dance”. Both these selections are available from Magnatune.

Episode 14 Links and References:

Sarah Brown’s contact info:

Other links:

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One Response to “Screen Space 14: An interview with Sarah Brown on “Personal Branding and Online Identity Construction””

[...] me about this topic at the conference, and she recently posted the interview on her blog, Screen Space. We had a fantastic conversation, and I hope you enjoy listening and/or reading some [...]

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