A Placeholder Doesn’t Cut It

Default image for social media and other sites.

Seriously, I get it. You don’t like to have your picture taken! You don’t think you look good in your pictures! You look old! You’re over or under weight and you don’t want to share that fact with anyone by posting your photo! I really do understand. You have no idea what a mental fight it is for me to appear in my YouTube videos and to pose for the thumbnail pictures. I’m not in one of the young generations of kids who continually take selfies. You are probably not in that group, either.

But, you like to communicate with people so you joined Facebook or Instagram or Twitter or some other Social Media site. When you set up your account, you found a profile placeholder – a.k.a. avatar – like the one pictured above. Instead of uploading a picture of yourself, you leave the grey and white fake photo on your account.

Or, even worse, you put a picture like one of these:

Don’t get me wrong, I love dogs and giraffes and hearts and flowers and trees and even cars. I just don’t want to see them as profile pictures. Here’s the thing: the primary purpose of a photo is to help people find the person for whom they are looking. For instance, if you have a Facebook account, go to search and look for “John Grubb” (without the quotes). Dozens of John Grubbs will appear in the results. There are even some people with my same middle initial. Oh, and there are variations, too – like Johnny Grubb and Jonathan Grubb. Many of them don’t have pictures of themselves, either. If you were looking for me, having a picture of me there really narrows down your search. Additionally, a picture of the person helps jog our memories when we know the name but can’t place the face.

If you want to have a profile photo with your dog or your grandchild or a giraffe, make sure you’re in the picture with them! Having said that, if you’re one of my readers who is using the placeholder avatar or some animal or tree, etc., here’s your assignment: fix yourself up, get your phone and take a nice picture (it’ll be nice even if you don’t think so.), then upload it to whichever account has no picture.

Oh, wait. Perhaps your reason for not putting a picture up is because you don’t know to upload it. On almost all sites, near the placeholder avatar, there will be a button to upload. Simply click that and then find your picture and upload it. If you have problems, feel free to let me know in the comments and I’ll help you!