This morning I saw a tweet from @ValaAfshar that said traditional resumes are dead and that the web is your resume... It also had a simple formula as follows:
Personal Brand = Digital Footprint + Digital Exhaust
I largely agree with this: faced with reading a resume or googling someone, many people these days choose the latter. This largely ties back to a previous post I made on Klout scores in that something becomes important if people are judging you by it. So, if your resume is now a fallback and the web is your primary face, you need to make sure you look good.
The biggest drawback to this is context and accuracy: if you've a common name people may research the wrong person, and out of context, information can look harmful - especially images.
Some people might call Digital Exhaust "the litter you leave on the internet", but what looks like litter to one person may be something valuable to someone else. Just looking at my own, it's a mixture of my passions; ships/boats, space, astronomy, music, bad puns and technology. All of which can look like detritus to people not interested in that stuff.
Your brand is really more important than many think, but also, it's very complicated and prone to misinterpretation.