Personal projects key to dream job, says Facebook's creative 'rebel'

Personal projects key to dream job, says Facebook's creative 'rebel'

Humourous dialogue added to advertisement. (Source: Bubble Project)
Humourous dialogue added to advertisement. (Source: Bubble Project)

Diving into your passion & making it public brings valuable exposure & can teach more skills than corporate ladder-climbing.


Personal projects are key to dream job, says Facebook's creative 'rebel'

AFP News agency

SAN JOSE - Standing out from the crowd in today's digital economy isn't easy, but the key might be pursuing personal projects more than polishing resumes and CVs, according to a senior member of Facebook's creative team.

Ji Lee, creative strategist at Facebook, believes that humour and standing out is what makes a personal initiative successful and allows you to stand out from the crowd when landing your dream job.

Advertisement with dialogue added courtesy of the Bubble Project (Source: Wikipedia)


Ji Lee talked to a conference in Costa Rica on Thursday.

"Today every individual, if you have a cellphone in your hand you have a superpower," Lee said. "You have access to billions of people in the palm of your hand."

Bubble project modified ad (Source: Bubble Project)


Lee, who was born in South Korea, raised in Brazil and now a long-term US resident, was able to break out of a dispiriting entry-level New York advertising job thanks to a quirky project he did on his own time and dime 15 years ago called The Bubble Project (see

That involved sticking blank cartoon speech balloons on New York advertising billboards that invited the public to write whatever they wanted.

Lee was fined several times for vandalism and given warnings from advertisers' lawyers.

But the experience won him the attention of a boutique ad agency -- and then years later landed him a creative director job at Google.


He ended up being poached by Facebook six years ago -- where he ensured he kept up with personal projects as a priority.

"My Facebook interest just supports what I do, because they understand what I do, that the whole stuff I learned in my personal projects brought me to Facebook," he told AFP.

Indeed, he has turned his whimsy to the social networking giant, whose feeds that mix news, ads and user posts he admitted can be an "overwhelming experience sometimes."

He started what he called a "white feed," which posts empty white space onto followers' Facebook feeds, injecting little oases of nothingness in the incessant flows of messaging.


Lee agreed there was "an act of rebellion" in a lot of what he does.

But he believes humour and standing out -- not trying to sell anything -- are what makes initiatives like that successful.

"I think there's plenty of reasons to be angry and to rebel against things," he said.

"My approach is doing it through humour because when people smile their barrier goes down and they're more susceptible to messages."

Blank bubble that people put on ads and wrote their own words on (Source: Bubble Project)

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  • access: having the opportunity to have or use something - มีโอกาสในการใช้
  • according to (prep): as stated or reported by somebody/something - ตามคำบอกเล่า, ตามรายงาน
  • ad agency: a company that does ads for other companies -
  • admitted (verb): agreed that something is true, especially when you are unhappy, sorry or surprised about it - ยอมรับ
  • advertiser: a company which makes an advertisement -
  • advertising: telling the public about a product or a service, political candidate, etc. in order to encourage people to buy, use or support it - การโฆษณา
  • approach: a way of doing or dealing with something; a particular way of doing something or thinking about something - การจัดการกับปัญหา วิธีการทำให้ถึงจุดหมาย
  • attention: interest, especially interest that the public has in a person, event, situation etc - ความสนใจ
  • barrier: an object like a fence or wall that prevents people/vehicles, etc. from moving forward from one place to another - สิ่งขัดขวาง, กำแพง, อุปสรรค
  • billboard: a large board on the outside of a building or at the side of the road, used for putting advertisements on - ป้ายหรือกระดานใช้สำหรับโฆษณา
  • blank: empty and contains no writing or other marks - ว่าง, เปล่า
  • boutique: (of a business) small and offering products or services of a high quality to a small number of customers - ร้านเล็กๆ ที่ขายสินค้าหรือบริการที่เฉพาะเจาะจง เช่น ร้านขายสินค้านำเข้า
  • break out of: leave or exit from -
  • conference (noun): a large official meeting, usually lasting for a few days, at which people with the same work or interests come together to discuss their views - การประชุมร่วม
  • corporate: involving large companies - บริษัทใหญ่
  • creative: involving a lot of imagination and new ideas - ซึ่งมีความคิดริเริ่ม, ซึ่งมีความคิดสร้างสรรค์
  • crowd: many people gathered at one place - ฝูงชน, กลุ่มคน, มวลชน
  • did on his own time: did not at work or as part of work -
  • dime: money (a dime is 10 cents in the US, 100 cents = 1 dollar) -
  • director: one of a group of senior managers who run a company - กรรมการบริษัท
  • dispiriting: boring; not motivating; takes energy and spirit out of you -
  • dive: to move or jump quickly in a particular direction, especially to avoid something, to try to catch a ball, etc -
  • ensure: to make certain that something happens or is done - ให้การยืนยัน, รับรอง, ให้ความมั่นใจ
  • entry-level: the first and most basic version of a product available to buy without any special features -
  • experience: the knowledge and skill that you have gained through doing something for a period of time - ประสบการณ์
  • experience (verb): to have something happen to you or to live through some event - ประสบ
  • exposure (noun): the act of showing something that is usually hidden - การเปิดโปง, การเปิด, การนำออกแสดง
  • feed: information or programmes that are sent from a central station to other stations in a network; the system of sending out this information or programmes -
  • fine: to be required to pay an amount of money because you have broken the law - ปรับเป็นเงิน
  • flow: supply of something that continues without stopping - การไหล
  • humour: the ability to find things funny, the way in which people see that some things are funny or the quality of being funny - ความตลกขบขัน
  • incessant: never stopping - เรื่อยๆ, ไม่หยุดหย่อน, ต่อเนื่อง
  • initiative: a new action or movement, often intended to solve a problem - ความคิดริเริ่ม
  • inject: to introduce something new that is necessary or helpful to a situation or process - ฉีด
  • invite: to ask somebody formally to go somewhere or do something - เชิญ
  • involve (verb): to be an important or necessary part or result of something - เกี่ยวพัน, เกี่ยวข้อง, พัวพัน
  • kept up with: did not fall behind; to continue doing something at the same speed, not slowing down -
  • key: the most important thing - สิ่งที่สำคัญที่สุด
  • ladder-climbing: getting promotions in your work and gradually moving to a higher level in a company -
  • land: to get or achieve something good, especially in a way which seems easy or unexpected - ได้รับ
  • lawyer: an attorney - ทนาย
  • long-term: that will last or have an effect over a long period of time - ระยะยาว
  • member: a person, a country or an organization that has joined a particular group, club or team - สมาชิก
  • message: an important idea that someone is trying to communicate - ประเด็น, เนื้อความ
  • mix: a combination or mixture of different things - ที่แตกต่างกัน ผสม
  • oases: little places that are paradises -
  • overwhelm: to be in such great amount that a person cannot deal with it - ท่วมท้น
  • palm (noun): the inner surface of the hand between the wrist and the fingers - ฝ่ามือ
  • passion: a strong enthusiasm or interest - ความชื่นชม หลงใหล 
  • personal: your own; not belonging to or connected with anyone else - เป็นส่วนตัว
  • polish (verb): to make changes to something in order to clean it up or improve it - ขัดเกลา, ฟื้นฟู, ปรับปรุง
  • priority: something important that must be done first or which needs more attention than something else - การมาก่อน
  • project: a planned piece of work that is designed to find information about something, to produce something new, or to improve something - โครงการ
  • public: the public; all people; the people in general - มหาชน, ประชาชน
  • public: open to people in general - สาธารณะ
  • pursue: to work at something or carry it out - ทำให้ลุล่วง
  • quirky (adj.): a little strange, especially and aspect of someone's personality or behaviour - ซึ่งแปลกๆ
  • raise: to take care of children while they are growing up - เลี้ยงดู
  • rebellion: opposition to authority; being unwilling to obey rules or accept normal standards of behaviour, dress, etc - การขัดขืน
  • resident: a person who lives in a particular area - ผู้ที่อาศัยในท้องที่
  • résumé (noun): (curriculum vitae) a written record of your education and the jobs you have done, that you send when you are applying for a job - ประวัติย่อ
  • senior: with a high rank or position - อาวุโส
  • skills (noun): the ability to do certain things well, usually as a result of experience and training - ฝีมือ, ทักษะ
  • social network: websites or other services on the internet for communication with people who share your interests - เครือข่ายสังคม
  • speech balloons: the little circles in cartoons where the words that a character says are put -
  • stand out: to be easily seen; to be noticeable - เห็นชัด
  • stand out: to be very noticeable - เด่นชัด
  • standing out: being easily seen; to be noticeable - เห็นชัด
  • strategist (noun): a person who is skilled at planning things - ผู้เชี่ยวชาญด้านยุทธศาสตร์
  • stuff: things; used to refer to a substance, material, group of objects, etc. when you do not know the name, when the name is not important or when it is obvious what you are talking about - สิ่ง, สิ่งของ, วัตถุ
  • successful (adjective): achieved the goals you wanted to achieve or made a lot of money - มีผลสำเร็จ, ประสบผลสำเร็จ, ประสบชัยชนะ
  • superpower (noun): one of the countries in the world that has very great military or economic power (or power in a particular sport) and a lot of influence - อภิมหาอำนาจ, มหาอำนาจ
  • susceptible: easily influenced or affected by something - อ่อนแอ,หวั่นไหวง่าย
  • unit: a part of a company or organisation that carries out a particular function; a group of people who work or live together, especially for a particular purpose - หน่วย,กอง,กลุ่ม
  • valuable: very useful or important - มีความหมาย, สำคัญ, มีราคา
  • vandalism: the crime of intentionally damaging property belonging to other people - การทำลายทรัพย์สินโดยเฉพาะของรัฐอย่างไร้เหตุผล
  • warning: an action or statement telling someone of a possible problem or danger - การเตือน
  • whole (adjective): all of something - ทั้งหมด
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