With the help of Google

I have now developed the habit of googling the names of all my clients and getting
an idea of the person who will be arriving to stay at my property.
It does not work for “John Smith” but it is a helpful tool.
So …before I recommend a new client to a chef, caterer or any busy acquaintance or friend I
would do the same.
The information which google provides can be very interesting.

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I find that slightly unpleasant. When I go somewhere I like to decide how and when I am going to share any information about me and my circumstances.

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I googled myself and got a picture of Myra Hindley, an afro-american horn player, a woman with a ‘prison’ tattoo on her face and what looked like a load of convicts.
Maybe I’m schizophrenic and have had some secret lives - secret even from me.
Think I need to go and comtemplate where it all went wrong now!!!


Why do you have to do that Barbera?have you lost your self judgment of people which is very important in your line of business do you not think it might be the time for you to retire if you have to resort to that to check up on your guest’s.

Didn’t think my name would be that common but there’s lots of mes out there. Take your pick…

Hahahaha Barbara, it is called stalking and teenagers spend their lives doing it to their new acquaintances!


No it is not called stalking!
If you have strangers visiting your property to stay it is perfectly
understandable to want to know something …just a little about them.

When they arrive they are left to enjoy my property.
I only engage in conversation when giving them relevant info.
The info comes up on Facebook mainly…and from the basic details which I find
there lies a small reference.
It gives away only what the person wishes to placate.
From this they have no reason to hide.
Maybe you have the picture…if you do not then you really do not
have any idea about me.

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Ps Martin…

You are assuming a lot.
When my clients book they usually are booked through an agent.
I have no details from my agent except for a name and how many
people in the group.The finances are also collected by the agent.

I have no intention of giving up just yet…I am fairly good at what I do
and I enjoy it.
And it pays for the up keep of my feline friends.

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I also look up the addresses of people renting my apt on Google Earth and street view.

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It’s all very well using Google to look up the name of someone coming to your gite, appartement, restaurant etc - I’ve done it myself, but sometimes there can be hundreds of people with the same name. And what do you do when you think you might have found out something that you’re not happy about - turn them away , lose business?
Sometimes best not to research people too deeply.


Yes but it can help.
And good to know who and how to make recommendations to
associates in catering.

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I routinely use a search engine (there are others apart from Google…) to get an idea about potential clients. As Barbara says the usual thing you end up with is someone’s Facebook page. These can be very revealing about the type of person I am going to visit & potentially be working for (& who will at some point be owing me money).

Another approach is to go to the domain name that appears in someone’s email address, if it’s an individual one such as john.smith@ficticiousbusiness.com. This usually leads you to someone’s business site, or that of their employer. Once on such a site you can often find out, for example, if the person is the MD or the teaperson.

I see nothing wrong with wanting a bit of inside information - people have always checked up on others, even before the internet (i.e. artisan A asks artisan B if client C is trustworthy). I work in an area where non-serious clients can waste a lot of your time (& diesel!). If anyone is concerned about what others can find out about them online then they can do what us “snoopers” do & find out what is out there about them, & remove/control accesss to it if needs be.

It works both ways; clients can also check up on businesses. If the person you are looking for doesn’t seem to have a web prescence that confirms the trade you might be hiring them for then they you might want to delve a bit deeper…:face_with_raised_eyebrow:

We live in a fairly transparent world.
Before clients come to stay with us they can find out
a lot.
But they know that they are safe in our place as our agent is
prominent, reliable and ATOL members…they have been in
business for more than 13 years and we have been established
for 10 and with a reputation which takes us way back.
But not way back enough to want to go to sleep with our
slippers on.

I still think that there is a huge difference between booking into some holiday accommodation and applying for something that requires a copy of your CV and access to your private life. Luckily I have a very common name and any snooping would be unlikely to find out anything about me.

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oh David really…what would I need to know about you?

And I do not look so far into my clients facebook pages…
Not interested in how many children they have or what car they drive.
Just like to see a happy, smiling face.

Michael, do you have a gite? Do you have people you do not know stay in your property?
We do the same. It gives us an idea of their background.

As I said before, when I’m away on holiday I want to be in control about how much personal information that I share with strangers.

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Michael if people book through an agent you do not know a lot about them.
It is not a question of self judgment, but of informing yourself of a bit of the background of people who are going to stay in your property.
I find your comment to Barbara totally unreasonable and an apology would not be out of the way.

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Well I suppose if the info is out there on Facebook etc we can’t complain too much. I know employers in the UK also use social media to check up on people.