back to article When your squash partner 'endorses' your coding skills on LinkedIn...

The amount of virtual spam I get from LinkedIn seems to be steadily increasing, to the point where, frankly, I can usually ignore the majority of email that has its name on the From: line. But maybe a month or two ago I suddenly started seeing a slew of LinkedIn recommendations from friends and colleagues in my inbox. I couldn’t …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    1. Version 1.0 Silver badge

      I endorse this comment

      1. JDC
        Thumb Up

        Like +1

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      doubleplus like

      He knows his shit, I can tell - that anonymous coward, guru!

      And then, hi-jacking like a tard, I have this to say:

      The only way this 'endorsement' bullshit could have any ring of truth about it, is if people with *the same skills sets listed* carried more *weight* when endorsing. Perhaps peers you've worked with, doing the same job as you. However, you'd also need people to be able to un-endorse you.

      "Holy fuck, Dave just endorsed Duncan as a Ninja, there's no ways that bastard knows *anything* about being a Ninja, heck, he started crying in a sales meeting once when someone stepped on his toe. - I Un-Endorse this shyster now!"

      It's a honesty system at the moment which online equates to getting click happy in the hope someone will notice you exist - "Dude, I just endorsed you as a nuclear physicist , can you big up me as an SEO executive?"

      In short, any prospective employer/business partner taking any stock of endorsements you may have as a reason to work with you is a dufus.

      There's a lot of dufuses out there, I know, I'm one of them...

      1. Andrew Moore

        Re: doubleplus like

        Completely agree.

        I noticed that I got a "Team Leader" endorsement the other day from someone I've never worked with.

        1. Law

          Re: doubleplus like

          I got endorsed for my C#, .NET and debugging skills last month by somebody I worked with as a student in a cinema once.

          I'm 100% certain she has no idea what the skills she endorsed actually are....

      2. JW Smythe

        Re: doubleplus like

        You know, that really encourages me to update my profile. I think I'm going to be a theoretical astrophysicist, recreational extreme mountain climber, astronaut, practical exobiologist, retired covert agent, and successful entrepreneur. I could at least partially pull most of those off. I don't think I'd be very good at nuclear physics.

        1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

          Re: doubleplus like

          I endorse JW Smythe as a theoretical extreme covert exobiologist astronaut. Never seen him entrepreneur anything, though.

  2. Kit_


    I agree on the endorsement side. Actually the people who get a big endorsement score on LinkedIn are those that endorse hundreds of other people. If you endorse someone else, you get a 50%+ chance they will endorse you back out of politeness.

    So it seems a huge score means either:

    - This guy has way too much time on his hands and wastes valuable working time by giving endorsements out to others like confetti.

    - This guy is a salesman and has used endorsements to build up relationships with clients.

    I think LinkedIn recommendations are good, because you put your reputation more on the line to endorse someone in public than simply give them a letter of recommendation that will be seen by only a few managers.

  3. ciaran

    So should I endorse back?

    I've also seen endorsements arriving, and I've ignored them like I ignore everything from Linkedin (why can't I stop it sending me emails?).

    But if someone endorses you, should I endorse them back? By ignoring the endorsement, am I ignoring the person? If they're looking for an endorsement, are they looking for a job? So many stupid questions from a worthless feature!

    1. Jason Hindle

      Re: Endorsing back is fine if honest

      When you click through your endorsement, you are usually given a black of LinkedIn friends and the opportunity to endorse them. My approach to this:

      - If I've worked with them and know they are competent in the skills in question, they get the nod

      - Otherwise I take no action.

      So, it's not abnormal for me not to endorse a skill if, for example, a former colleague has developed new skills in a subsequent job (no matter how honest I personally know them to be). In an industry containing so many arrogant technical primadonnas, charlatans, snake oil salesmen and general purpose legends in their own lunchtime, I feel the need to draw the occasional line in the sand.

    2. Wibble

      Re: So should I endorse back?

      No. It's pointless.

  4. Headley_Grange Silver badge

    AAAAAAAAAA++++++++++ Article

    Fast delivery, just as described, no problems.

    1. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: AAAAAAAAAA++++++++++ Article

      Headly, that's close to my standard feedback for a good seller. It's short and conveys the pertinent information. The "AAAAAA....." is a bunch of crap though. It doesn't say anything meaningful.

    2. Annihilator

      Re: AAAAAAAAAA++++++++++ Article

      You forgot "would reccommend", "would recomend", "wood reccomend" or the highly unlikely "would recommend"

  5. Zilla
    Thumb Up

    LinkedIn a waste of time

    As far as I'm concerned LinkedIn is nothing but a waste of good time. Time and time again I'm told by my colleagues that I should be on LinkedIn, because ALL the recruiters use it.

    The problem is that fundamentally it's a load of horse shit. People use it to craft this image of themselves which in most cases tends to be a complete lie. One particular example is an ex-colleague of mine who I had the misfortune of training some years back, his LinkedIn reads like some epic novel of achievement when in reality he was completely incapable of very basic tasks.

    I'm not gonna bother for now, I've never had a problem getting a job through the usual channels and I don't intend to whore myself out to another social media wank fest unless it's absolutely necessary. (that is, every single agent on the planet starts using LinkedIn exclusively)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: LinkedIn a waste of time

      '..Time and time again I'm told by my colleagues that I should be on LinkedIn, because ALL the recruiters use it..'

      For precisely *that* reason alone, I'm not on it.

      Recruiters/ Recruitment agencies are a strange and annoying bunch to deal with as both a client and a prospective employer.

      I had the pleasure of one character who'd gotten his hands on my CV somehow pester me about a programming/sysadmin contract, not knowing that I knew the guy who ran the section of the organisation who were looking to fill the vacancy. One quick email to my friend later, found out that this agency had no business trying to recruit people for the vacancy.

      Another time, whilst trying to recruit someone, even though the ad explicitly stated no agencies, we received upwards of ten calls per day from them for the fortnight the ad was live, and I won't tell you how many CV's we had emailed through to us from them..

      1. BillG
        Thumb Up

        Re: LinkedIn a waste of time

        Not a waste of time if you use it correctly, I get the bulk of my business from LinkedIn, you just need to know how to use it.

        Yeah, endorsements are little more than a +1, but RECOMMENDATIONS are where you see real value. if someone takes ten minutes to write a paragraph on your skills and why you are good, that means something.

        BTW, I get no spam, but then again I only connect to people I know.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I get the bulk of my business from LinkedIn,

          i doubt that you work. How old are you, 12?

        2. Dr Scrum Master
          Big Brother

          Re: LinkedIn a waste of time

          "RECOMMENDATIONS are where you see real value. if someone takes ten minutes to write a paragraph on your skills and why you are good, that means something."

          Yes, they mean something, but the not necessarily what's written. I've seen recommendations for people who I've had the misfortune to have worked with and the LinkedIn recommendations paint those people in a completely different light to the experience I had of them.

    2. ACx

      Re: LinkedIn a waste of time

      I think you just described a CV.

    3. Rampant Spaniel

      Re: LinkedIn a waste of time

      Bloody well said. Any company that bases hiring decisions on endorsements on linkedin deserves to tank. The people who bug me about getting on linkedin are the people who spend all their time 'networking' and sod all time working.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: LinkedIn a waste of time

        Any company that bases hiring decisions on endorsements on linkedin deserves to tank.

        It will be cheaper, faster, easier to game and probably exactly as accurate as "personality profiling" (and the rest of the voodoo, fraud, and snake oil) that recruitment agencies and HR-bods commit themselves to these days.

  6. bluesxman


    In my experience the endorsements are even more trivial than described.

    If you click through an endorsement notification (or click the "Endorse Connections" link from your profile page) it pops up a selection of contacts with a single skill already selected for you. All you have to do is hit the yellow button to spam them all with some profile cruft. You don't even have to read (let alone think about) who you're endorsing or what you're endorsing them with.

    It utter shite.

  7. Graham Dawson Silver badge

    I thought it was bad when they invented the A* rating at GCSE. Never understand that.

    I still don't.

    Must be why I get such a snippy attitude on ebay all the time. "Will purchase from this seller again" probably means I want to murder their dog and eat their children these days.

    1. DJV Silver badge
      Thumb Up


      I got A* in the exam for my Astronomy GCSE evening class - seemed appropriate - can't think of any other reason for it though!

    2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      I thought it was bad when they invented the A* rating at GCSE.

      I assume it means you're good at traversing graphs.

  8. Jumble

    Iit's good to talk.

    Over many years of recruiting, I've only ever taken one sort of reference seriously. It's the one you get when you call a previous employer (preferably a direct manager). The most important question is 'Would you rehire this person?'

    OTOH, linked in can be great for finding stuff out about people that they've tried to conceal from you.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Iit's good to talk.

      "Would you rehire this person?"

      The kind of problems that answering that question would give should be enough to deter anyone from even engaging in such a conversation. There is *no* way you will get an unbiased, honest answer.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Iit's good to talk.

        The answer is actually useless because there is no context:

        If the person is a total arsehole and perhaps got sacked for nicking from the till or sexual harassment, then the former manager would perhaps prefer this candidate to get a job with the competition and thus gives a glowing description of the candidates unique qualities! Maybe the former boss is an idiot, so he/she will try to sabotage anyone who leaves them so good people get a shitty review - e.t.c.

        The best one can hope is to find out if they lied on the CV. Many people do!

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Come across similar in a photo sharing/review site. You'd post a photo and people could review it - trouble is, you'd get people posting a wonderful review of something you knew was iffy (having posted it in the hope of receiving constructive critism) and then expecting you to post an equally effusive review of their (usually) mediocre photo.

    If you dared post a less than flattering review, then suddenly you'd get a host of negative comments about your images. Made a harsh (yet accurate) review of some Italian's photo and from then on every image I posted was slagged off from the same bunch - all with Italian sounding user names.

    Problem with these sites are that people "endorse" someone else in the hope of receiving an endorsement in return, therefore making the whole thing completely worthless.

    Oh, and it's not "BEST TWEET EVER", it's "BEST TWEET EVA!!111!!!"

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Such things have a very succinct name:

      Mutual Admiration Societies

      I waste no time with them. If I think you've done a good job, I'll tell you. If I think your work is a load of crap, I'll tell you. I do not expect anything in return for such deeds.

      As for LinkedIn, I added the whole site to my spam filter when they started sending notifications to Gentoo mail aliases like mips and mozilla — to which I'm subscribed.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Such things have a very succinct name:

        Yeah, but it's Circle Jerk not a Mutual Admiration Society.

        My wife was convinced to setup a Linked In account by a recruiter who assured her that a prospective employer didn't consider candidates without one. I can well believe they would have this policy, since in the last round of job interviews I did there was an employer who would not believe me when I said I didn't have a Facebook account (they wanted me to "friend" someone from their HR department for f*cks sake).

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Okay, it has a very succinct but politically correct name, and an even more succinct name that isn't politically correct.

          And how I am thankful that my employer doesn't care about my lack of any social media accounts. :-) I'm not sure I'd want to work for a company that did insist on friending people.

    2. Rampant Spaniel by any chance :-) If you think thats bad don't go on fm forums, the same thing only more so. Stay away from any forum where users list all their equipment and put the L's in red.

  10. Jackieboy


    I constantly get updates from LinkedIn that recruiter X or Y were endorsed by person Z or whoever else for "High frequency trading" or "RedHat" or "Cisco" or "Active Directory" or whatever (technical) else.

    Can anybody tell me why do the recruiters put such skills in their profiles anyway?

    (I am a techie so I do not put "Recruiting" in mine).

    1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: Recruiters

      Can anybody tell me why do the recruiters put such skills in their profiles anyway?

      So that their profiles will appear in the search results for those skills, obviously. It's a form of advertising. You might think that no rational person would respond to a patently deceptive and manipulative advertisement like that, but fortunately for recruiters, people are not rational.[1]

      [1] Even though they all eventually terminate.

  11. Mage Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    "thumbs up"

    Sadly it's true.

    Though most of my linkedin recommendations are valid as mostly I only accept connections from people I have actually worked with or in similar fields of expertise.

    But many on LinkedIn seem to be "connection whores", or like Stamp collectors.

    Why do only average eBay sellers think they should get 5 stars? IMO only exceptional should get 5, so mostly I give 4 on each category.

    1. Wibble
      Thumb Down

      Re: "thumbs up"

      Seems to be this rampant 'Merkinisation of the world... Can't just have a nice time, has to be "the greatest", "the best", "utterly fantastic".

      What sets El Reg apart from the LinkedIn / FaceBook tosh is the downvotes. And my alter-ego. I'm massively uncomfortable about my "Real Name" on LinkedIn, hence my CV says sod all about what I really do.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: "thumbs up"

        Seems to be this rampant 'Merkinisation of the world... Can't just have a nice time, has to be "the greatest", "the best", "utterly fantastic".

        You missed out the most important of all. OSSUM!!!11!!

        But here's a thumbs up for you anyway. Now give me a one too.

    2. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: "thumbs up"

      eBay has this weird rating system for sellers. If you are getting below about a 4.5 star rating, you are dodgy seller and should pay higher fees. That's why sellers ask for 5 star ratings, so they can keep from paying even more of the usurious levels of fees that eBay demands

      A 3 level system works the easiest. One means the seller is deficient, two rates the seller as just average and three denotes a seller that is working hard for your business.

  12. Ted Treen


    "...To a large extent, social networks (especially Facebook) are about creating and reinforcing friendships rather than getting into deep philosophical discussions,..."

    But to a much larger extent, social networks (especially Facebook) are about selling you to the targeted advertising industry, and making the founders (especially Zuckerberg) exceedingly rich people.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Slowly shutting down sites like LinkedIn

    There is a simple experiment you should try - kill off every filter in LinkedIn and watch what a barrage of data you get thrown at you from everyone. You cannot switch off what gets transmitted, only how much you receive of it. Once you realise that every single twitch gets reported to everyone you should think about reducing your exposure because you are no longer in control over your professional information - LinkedIn is.

    As a matter of fact, I'm presently working on projects which involve privacy, and I have removed every association with clients from LinkedIn. If you find someone linked to me in LinkedIn, it's a 100% guarantee that I do NOT do business with that person.


    - recruiters who exclusively/preferably use LinkedIn - we don't use them. Deliberately.

    - recommendations: you have no idea of the diligence behind it, so it has little usable value.

  14. disgruntled yank


    A few weeks ago, a sometime co-worker endorsed my skills with a certain CMS. I know how to spell its name, and that's about it. But it was good of him to think of me.

  15. Tim 11
    Thumb Up

    +1 me too

    sorry - couldn't help myself

  16. Adrian 4

    Seriously ?

    I'm astonished that anyone would give a toss what LinkedIn does. It's instantly apparent from the invitations it generates what sort of people make it up.

    You are Dilbert's PHB and ICMFP.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Seriously ?

      And they don't stop spamming you either! The amount of spam (ahem, invitation emails, reminders about those emails and reminders about the reminders) is just silly.

      For this reason, their mail server is now blocked on our company exchange server.

  17. picturethis

    What's next?

    I've been on linked in for quite a while now and I don't connect with anyone that I have not personally worked with on a project. I had to do this because otherwise I felt really uncomfortable when someone asked me to recommend them and I had to decline because I didn't know anything about the person. Needless to say, I'm not the most popular person around because of this...

    I can't help but think what happens on linked-in when everyone is linked to everyone, what's the point then?

    I also don't like the idea of just searching for a checklist of skills (but linked-in isn't the only one guilty of this).

    "Connection whores"... I like it, that's funny.

  18. AndrewH

    It's even worse than that...

    I've been endorsed for skills I don't even claim to have by (presumably) well-meaning colleagues (i.e. who know what I actually do)

    At least there's an option not to accept these endorsements.

  19. GrahamT

    Memento mori

    I was endorsed by an ex colleague for a skill I only acquired after leaving that company. (He was a salesman so maybe fishing for a return endorsement.)

    Secondly, when in Linked In one day I was aksed to endorse various people, one of whom did have the skills to be endorsed, but I felt I couldn't endorse him as he had died two years earlier.

  20. LordHighFixer

    An endorsement..

    Is more of a reflection on you and not the person you endorse. I do not endorse people who I know do not have a particular skill. It is a matter of trust. I don't want to look like a fool for endorsing someone for skills they don't have. Granted it probably won't have any effect on me, but it could, and I do after all have some standards, and a little bit of ethics, I like to try to uphold.

  21. WylieCoyoteUK

    Facebook by another name...

    Personally, I tried Linked-in and realised that it is just Facebook for fat old business types.

    And frauds

    I looked up an old colleague, and apparently he's been "headhunted" for every job he has held in the last 20 years.

    Yeah right, I know that it actually went like this:

    1.Left in a huff because he went after a team leader position and didn't get it.

    2.Left before the area manager could sack him

    3.Was made redundant when they closed his division

    4.Jumped ship before the downsizing got him

    He has also claimed to be in roles he never held (luckily, the firms in question no longer exist as such, so no one can check).

    Mind you, he was always a Bull**** merchant.

  22. Martin Maisey

    Actually potentially not so stupid...

    Agree that the number of endorsements you have for a particular skill will still be a very poor indication of how good you are at it. This is because an endorsement as currently displayed in LinkedIn doesn’t provide any indication of the expertise of the endorser. Therefore gaming this metric becomes trivial - I just need to find people to ‘swap’ skills with.

    But I suspect that this is only the first data collection stage in a sophisticated plan. I spent 4 years in a role specialising in social network analysis (have moved to a different, unrelated job now), and combining analysis of networks with good quality real world data is powerful, even in the face of large amounts of "noise" of the type described in this article.

    Building an expertise score for each person/skill combination is much more involved than just counting the endorsements. It's analogous to Google’s original PageRank algorithm, and in particular its cousin TrustRank. Implementing this in large networks is technically hard, but the basic idea is that you ‘flow out’ reputation scores for each skill through the network of endorsements, starting at known experts. Endorsements for a particular skill from someone would be weighted by their own score. As a result, an endorsement wouldn’t count for much or anything unless the person providing it had been directly or indirectly endorsed by someone who is definitely an expert.

    As they’re clearly collecting lots of endorsements very quickly, LinkedIn’s main challenge will be to identify good experts. It could probably be done manually for common skills in highly LinkedIn connected industries such as IT, although this wouldn’t scale for less connected industries and less common skills.

    However, LinkedIn will have lots of ways of doing this fairly well on an automated basis given the incredibly rich datasets they have access to. In the IT space at least, they are rapidly approaching saturation. This means they know about many of the approaches recruiters make to potential candidates. They also know about virtually all job moves and whether they resulted in a person staying with a company for a while and forming a stable professional network. This is valuable data to mine.

    LinkedIn is, if they play their cards right, about to establish a high quality set of skill scores ranking a significant proportion of the world’s population. They may well not make this directly visible to users, but use it for - for example - refining recruiter search results. Once established as a key recruitment tool, being a participant in this system will not be optional, and it becomes a self reinforcing monopoly - similar to the one Google have managed to manufacture for themselves in advertising, but I’d argue more valuable.

    One final thought. A really interesting (meta-)score you can generate for each person is how good they are at endorsing people who are already highly scored by others. You can then use this to further weight the reputation flow in the network and filter out people who are genuinely skilled, but endorse unreliably. I’d argue this is a very interesting metric in its own right. Particularly for senior people, the ability to accurately assess another’s skill level is possibly the most important skill of all.

    I’d recommend people are highly selective about who they endorse and for what.

    (The above is mostly rehashed from a blog post I've done at, which also talks about the major problems with Klout if people are interested...)

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Two thumbs up

    Thankfully us commentards on El Reg are above such meaningless endorsement. That's why you'd never see a completely accurate comment receive receive a zillion downvotes, just because the writer made some perceived criticism of Linux or Android.

    Oh. wait...

    1. Graham Dawson Silver badge

      Re: Two thumbs up

      You forgot apple.

      I was goig to say "you forgot mirosoft" too, but nobody likes Microsoft.

    2. Anonymous Coward

      Re: Two thumbs up

      How could you mention downvoting without mentioning either Microsoft or Apple?

      So I downvoted you.

      1. Anonymous Coward

        Re: Two thumbs up

        Can the next release of the El Reg comment engine allow loading all comments on a single page? I don't like sounding like a twit (even if I can spell (sorry Graham))

  24. OneArmJack

    Facebook: for friends outside of work

    LinkedIn: for people I've worked with

    And never the twain shall meet.

  25. Johan Bastiaansen

    LinkedIn... LinkedIn... LinkedIn...

    The word rings a bell.

    Hmmm, didn't they go public a while ago?

  26. phuzz Silver badge
    IT Angle

    Here's a question for you: I have a very common name, but I don't have any social media profiles, or at least any publicly accessible ones. Should I create a sanitised version for recruiters/potential employers to find? Or hope they find my lack of facebook acceptable?

    1. Steve Aubrey

      John Smith? I'd know you anywhere!!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      just sign up as john;init 0; smith, or something equally destructive.

      1. Anonymous Coward

        You don't have a son named Robert'); DROP TABLE Students; per chance do you?

  27. Anonymous Coward

    I think its a somewhat useful barometer of skills...

    But really, when its so easy to endorse people, it doesnt show a lot of real thought. I'd rather have someone give me an unsolicited 1-2 paragraph recommendation, rather than 10 endorsements.

  28. An(other) Droid
    Thumb Up


    > If a friend posts a newspaper article to Facebook about a government minister who’s been caught embezzling millions, does a like mean “I like it when government ministers embezzle millions,” or does it mean “I like it when government ministers who’ve embezzled millions are exposed in newspaper articles”?

    BEST. LINE. EVER!!!!

  29. The Alpha Klutz

    let me tell you about linked in folks

    no one cares that you and your mates put an obviously sexed up list of skills on a website. you are not employable. you are scum.

  30. Daniel von Asmuth

    It will only take you a second

    please click *here* to endorse my beer drinking skills.

  31. a pressbutton

    my first endorsement

    Was from an ex I left a little abruptly and less than completely gently in about '96

    She endorsed me in change management

  32. Russ Tarbox

    I removed my LinkedIn profile after privacy issues.

    I was linked in the "People you may know" section to two of my "housemates" (I barely speak to them - everyone works, it's not a sociable house). The only way, whatsoever, that LinkedIn could have known is that we all logged in from the same IP address. LinkedIn would not admit to this when asked, though, saying that they don't use this information. They were downright lying, so I removed my profile. I've never particularly liked their service and it's not served me any great purpose. This just seems to be another "feature" that is virtually pointless.

    1. MachDiamond Silver badge
      Thumb Down

      Re: I removed my LinkedIn profile after privacy issues.

      One or both of your housemates may have used the LinkedIn function that combs an email address book and tries to match you up with people you know.

      I've never used that "feature" and never will. I consider it a gullibility test to find people that can be scammed easily.

  33. Terry 6 Silver badge

    Endorse B*******s

    I regularly chat and swap views with peopleon Linked-in who share my main specialisms (not in IT). Some of them appear to hsve serious and deep knowledge in our field. Some have very superficial skills. But I would neither endorse the former nor condemn the latter, because I've never run an evaluation on them.

    The same would also hold true for anyone I've actually worked with. I wouldn't presume to give a judgement on someone I haven't looked at in an objective way, e.g. done " performance management" on them, or at least shared a significan peice of work.

    The value of an off the cuff view is about the same as a chat down the pub.

  34. Red Bren

    The immediacy of social networking

    Saying “Congratulations!” or “Good luck!” when a friend announces that she’s just giving birth is perfectly reasonable.

    There, fixed it for you.

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fing Recruiters

    Now if only a damned recruiter would actually READ my profile before deciding whether to spam me.

    1. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: Fing Recruiters

      I don't think that being able to read is a requirement to work in a HR department. I definitely know they can write from all of the employment ads I have been looking through lately.

  36. Affian

    It's the little things

    My favorite feature with linkedin is how easy they make it to totally close your account

  37. jake Silver badge

    Speaking as a guy who helps companies fill high-tech positions[1] ...

    ... About 18 months ago, I added all so-called "social" media mentions on resumes/c.v.s to filter criteria that says "shred me, please". This includes Linkedin ... If they bring it up in a positive way during a face to face interview, or a telephone interview, I terminate the interview immediately.

    Other useful filter criteria (in my opinion!) are listed in this three year old post:

    [1] I am NOT a recruiter, not exactly anyway. Rather, I am often asked to help staff newly built data centers. Beer, because, well, I have 3500 resumes/c.v.s on my desk ... Always gives me a headache, but the financial compensation is good, and I can work from home :-)

    1. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: Speaking as a guy who helps companies fill high-tech positions[1] ...

      Jake, you might be missing some good people or at least some insight on somebody by immediately dismissing them for using LinkedIn. In these times of high unemployment, people are using every tool they can to find gainful employment. How they use LinkedIn might be a good indicator of their quality. You can also see how much they have slanted the resume they have sent you. I will agree that other social media mentions are useless. If somebody lists their address for 5 social media sites, a Skype number, their ICQ (are they still around?) and whatever else, it would be a good guess that they are going to be spending much of their day NOT doing the work that you hired them for.

      Yes, I use LinkedIn. I use it very superficially as a place to post my resume and participate in a couple of professional groups that relate to the type of work I do. I don't qualify as a "connection whore" nor do I lavishly endorse or recommend people. My connection list is limited to the people I have worked with. I do not connect with friends, classmates or people I have casually met at a trade show. If I was in a job that I would consider a career, I would probably axe my profile.

      Good luck with sorting the pile of resumes. I looked at your referenced post and wonder why you don't want these sent in via email. I would think that it might make thinning the pile a bit faster if you could automate it a bit. Oh well, be sure to properly shred the duds into tiny bits so the People's Republik of Kalifornia doesn't make trouble for you. -Cheers

      1. jake Silver badge

        Re: Speaking as a guy who helps companies fill high-tech positions[1] ...


        I am "jake". "Jake" is another poster. Which is kind of my point.

        " you might be missing some good people"

        Probably. But it just ain't worth separating the wheat from the chaff.

        "I looked at your referenced post and wonder why you don't want these sent in via email."

        Because the people responding via email (in that case!) are incapable of understanding simple instructions. Simple filters are good when you are likely to be dealing with massive bits of incoming data on potential future employees.

        Note that I don't hate email resumes as such, mind, and I do accept email applications in some places ... but when I know I'm going to get thousands of incoming resumes, and I specifically request formats other than email or .doc(x) for a high-tech position in that particular position, it's pretty easy to drop the emailed or .doc(x) ones on the floor because the applicants clearly can't read for comprehension.

        1. Rampant Spaniel

          Re: Speaking as a guy who helps companies fill high-tech positions[1] ...

          I know it is a pain in the arse (specific methods for submitting applications) when applying for jobs but too many people apply for jobs 'just because'. Having that extra bit of effort in there weeds out of the half arsed applicants. When I have hired in the past it means taking significant time away from my actual job to review applicants and interview them and that was with the support of HR. Desk warmers trying to get their offspring jobs takes up enough time, let alone dealing with any mouth breather who can use a photo copier.

          I would add to jake's list of criteria to shred, the "personal interests" sections. I was hiring a CAD technician (not something I personally know much about but apparently my department = my hire). We sent HR the specs for the role and a generous salary allowance (we were on cost plus and needed good quick). I got back maybe 50 decent applicants and maybe 30 duffers but one duffer stood out. Not well qualified and not experienced but the CV was padded with a significant amount of hobbies which included Paranormal Investigations.

          Of course we had to see this. I was actually considering hiring them as an assistant to the CAD tech, if they were a managers kid etc you never know when you need a favor. As the interview rolls around this pretty substantial individual approaches reception, dressed in an ankle length black leather jacket in the middle of summer, greasy hair, absolutely stank and was simply unable to communicate coherently on any topics outside of his personal interests. Of course on the way out he stopped by his Dad's office for a lift home. Needless to say he didn't get the job. If he had taken a bath, dressed vaguely sensibly and been honest about his lack of experience he might have been hired for a junior role.

  38. russsh

    Most useful feature of LinkedIn when recruiting

    When evaluating a potential hire, the best feature of LinkedIn is to find out who you know in common. That way you can do a reference check from somebody you know and trust, rather than the candidate's choice or best friend.

  39. csumpi

    linkedin is for LOSERS

    Linkedin is for losers.

    If you are on linkedin to find work because you can't find work based on your real life accomplishments, you are a loser.

    If you are a manager looking to hire someone from linkedin based on "endorsements", you are a loser.

    If you are none of the above and on linkedin just to socialize, then you need to get out more and hence you are a loser.

    1. nuked

      Re: linkedin is for LOSERS

      You sir are an idiot

  40. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    LinkedIn could actually be a problem..

    .. given that part of my business has to do with controlled deception.

    You can find any old data on me, but the salient data just isn't online, and has never been. Thus, anyone relying on LinkedIn or other online sources to find out about me isn't operating in the right circles :-).

  41. Gyory

    No ...

    Sloppy article. I took the trouble to check with a few colleagues who endorsed me and they confirmed that they never looked at my profile and have not logged in to LinkedIn in the last two years. Looks like someone just "salted" the endorsements to start the endorsing.

  42. jrick

    Should You "Like" a Post From Your Sister That Her Cat Just Died?

    This reminded me of something I tweeted earlier this month: "If a friend announces bad news on Facebook, should you click the 'like' button?"

    Specifically, let's say your sister's cat just died. On Facebook, she wrote, "RIP, Corey Sue (1998-2012)." How should you respond?

    My two sense: When a "like" can be construed to contain opposite meanings, leave a comment. Instead of clicking, try typing. That is, scroll past the thumbs-up button and move your cursor to the field where you can more fully express yourself. A few words ("My condolences, Jen") mean far more—to both your sister and Facebook's EdgeRank algorithm—than a facile flick of your finger.

    On Twitter, you'll often see in someone's bio that "RTs ≠ endorsements." This means that just because you retweet something doesn't mean you're endorsing it. Let's make the Facebook corollary: "likes ≠ endorsements."

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "...To a large extent, social networks (especially Facebook) are about creating and reinforcing friendships rather than getting into deep philosophical discussions,..."

    Horse poo. Isn't Facebook about grubbing as much marketing info as possible?

  44. Chris Hennick
    IT Angle

    Filtering LinkedIn

    The only LinkedIn filter I need in Gmail is:

    from:( subject:"Do you know"

    Maybe it's those "Do you know Joe Schmo" e-mails that put endorsement spammers in your network in the first place.

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