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Linked In Or Out?

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the won't-you-be-my-neighbor-today dept.

Privacy 474

Mr_Whoopass writes "I am the IT Administrator for a regional restaurant chain, and as of late I am noticing more and more people sending me invitations to sites like LinkedIn, FaceBook, etc. Mother always taught me to be a skeptic, and, knowing more than the average Joe about how information can be used in this digital era, I am reticent to say the least about posting such personal details as my full name and where I work on the net for all to see. I have thus far managed to stay completely below the radar, and a search on Google has nothing on my real persona. However, now times are tough, and I see sales dropping in the industry I work in as it is a discretionary spending market to be sure. I wonder if I should loosen up on the paranoia a bit and start networking with some of these folks in case of the all too common layoff scenario that seems to be happening lately. What do other folks here think about this? I am specifically interested in what people who work in IT think (since I know that just about every moron who has 'Vice President' or sits on the 'Executive Team' is already on LinkedIn and has no clue about why they should be trying to protect their identity)."

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474 comments

First questions first (5, Funny)

hugetoon (766694) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951447)

What's your real name allready?

Re:First questions first (5, Funny)

y00nix (775009) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951453)

What's your real name allready?

What is your quest?

Re:First questions first (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951487)

What... is the air speed velocity of an unladen swallow in flight?

Go ahead! Mod me redundant! I know you want to!

Re:First questions first (4, Informative)

dna_(c)(tm)(r) (618003) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951515)

What's your real name allready?

What is your quest?

Blue! Arrrrrggg....

Re:First questions first (1)

bigngamer92 (1418559) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951837)

How is this informative? I mean if you've never seen Monty Python and the Holy Grail then I guess... you've been warned.

Re:First questions first (3, Funny)

DimmO (1179765) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951909)

1. Arthur, King of the Britons.
2. To seek the Holy Grail.
3. What? African or European Swallow?

Re: his name (4, Funny)

wireloose (759042) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951603)

He thinks he's smart, hiding from us, but I googled Whoopass and found 1,180,000 hits.

Re:First questions first (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951689)

Yay, please make whole threads based on rehashed, old-ass jokes that stopped being funny decades ago. Make sure you keep modding these Funny too, jackasses.

So I have a lame rehashed old-ass joke too. I think this entire thread is fucking silly so mine will get modded down. You know how Slashdot is, they think there's something wrong with you if you don't follow the groupthink.

From TF Summary:

Mother always taught me to be a skeptic

Really? Your mother taught me to suck a mean dick! I mean god damn, that woman can suck a basketball through a garden hose!

Ok, I made a shitty joke that's old as hell. Where's my +1, Funny? Oh wait, I didn't follow the groupthink, so where's my -1 Flamebait? Hurry up now, don't keep me waiting.

Want a job? Get on LinkedIn (5, Interesting)

tsa (15680) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951475)

I know many people for whom LinkedIn was important in getting a new job. Not only can people see what you have done, but more importantly, LinkedIn shows potential employers who you know, which is valuable information to them. They can choose you above someone else because of the people they know, and will be incorporated in the company's network by hiring you.

Re:Want a job? Get on LinkedIn (4, Interesting)

tsa (15680) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951509)

Oops I should have used the preview button. What I wanted to say was: LinkedIn shows to potential employers the professionals you know, which is valuable information to them. They can choose you above someone else because of the people you know, and will be incorporated in the company's network by hiring you.

Re:Want a job? Get on LinkedIn (5, Insightful)

schon (31600) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951827)

LinkedIn shows to potential employers the professionals you know, which is valuable information to them.

Why? What specifically is valuable about people who know me? How does who I know affect how well I can do my job?

They can choose you above someone else because of the people you know, and will be incorporated in the company's network by hiring you.

Again, how exactly does who I know affect how competent I am at my job?

And if the answer is "it doesn't, but they might want to know anyway" - why isn't it possible that they might decide *not* to hire me, based on the people I know?

Re:Want a job? Get on LinkedIn (4, Interesting)

Swizec (978239) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951915)

Clients and crowdsourcing.

The more and better people you know, the more clients you can potentially reel in and, of course, the more people from your field you know, the quicker you'll find someone who can help you out of a snag.

In short, they're counting on the idea that hiring you they're implicitly also hiring all of your professional contacts - completely for free.

Re:Want a job? Get on LinkedIn (5, Insightful)

nabsltd (1313397) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951917)

For example, I am first-level connected to several people who have written a moderately well-known RFC. I have more direct access to them than the average person, and I can pick their brain for free.

If I was hunting for a job in that particular field, then my connections might help, especially if the people doing the hiring know those names (even if they don't know the people personally).

On the other hand, I can't see a reason why somebody would not hire me just because I know somebody. For example, I have first-level connections to people that I have done business with (provided them consulting, etc.), but I'm not drinking buddies with (i.e., I don't know everything about them). Now, it's possible that those people are real slime except when dealing with me, but even if they are, it doesn't mean anything...I didn't say I recommended them, just that I know them.

Re:Want a job? Get on LinkedIn (4, Interesting)

Kneo24 (688412) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951951)

Your questions are really simple to answer.

A lot of the companies I've worked for think of themselves as one big family. Because of that, they will hire people other employees know so that there's less of a chance of in fighting and more of a chance of teamwork. It helps to keep the big happy family image.

They will even consider hiring the friends of their worst employees. Don't ask me why, but they do.

There is that off chance that who you know could hurt you, but that's probably small. Just don't keep friends or contacts who are total dick bags and it shouldn't bite you in the ass.

Re:Want a job? Get on LinkedIn (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951765)

or vv.. they can choose NOT to hire you based on the people you know.

You can't win if you don't play (4, Insightful)

salesgeek (263995) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951479)

The whole social network phenomenon is a lot like the lottery:

* You can't win if you don't play.
* You can't loose if you don't play.

The price of admission to the social network game is:

* Loss of privacy.
* You may meet new people. Some may be good and others may be bad.
* Get a new free email account because harvesting emails out of social networks is the new hotness for small time spamtrepreneurs.

It's a lot like real life. The more friends you have the less private life is, and the more people want you to sign up for their MLM.

Re:You can't win if you don't play (5, Insightful)

liquidpele (663430) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951589)

To add to that, LinkedIn is about the only real site worth doing for your career. Facebook, mysapce, and others are more social and likely to hurt more than they help.

Re:You can't win if you don't play (4, Insightful)

poena.dare (306891) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951903)

I chose LinkedIn to be my employment oriented networking site because nobody there cares what half-assed band you like.

Re:You can't win if you don't play (4, Interesting)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951623)

Yeah, but most of these "friends" aren't real. It's like facebook where you can have 100s of so-called friends but none of them would actually do anything for you. What use is that? It's like the late-90s/early-00s internet bubble, where instead of companies trying to grow marketshare but having no viable business plan, you have people trying to be popular but with real viable end goal for it all.

Social networking to meet new people is great, but as far as networking goes, the more people that are in it, the less each individual is worth. I would think you're almost better using social media to meet new people, but having fewer but true friends and some contacts around the industry that know your potential value to a business from real contact rather than just another face online hyping him/herself.

Re:You can't win if you don't play (5, Insightful)

dintlu (1171159) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951629)

As sites like LinkedIn grow in popularity, and as users learn to game the system to their advantage, I expect that the value of such services for hiring decisions will be diminished to the point where actual word of mouth matters as much as it did before the existence of the service.

Re:You can't win if you don't play (1)

HeronBlademaster (1079477) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951675)

I agree with you 100%. I have avoided Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. like the plague for various reasons, one being that in the long run I don't think it will actually do me any good. I get jobs effortlessly enough as it is ;)

Re:You can't win if you don't play (1)

ickpoo (454860) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951757)

Think of LinkedIn as a glorified address book and it is still useful. Just ensure that all your friends are really people you know.

Re:You can't win if you don't play (1)

dintlu (1171159) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951805)

This is a naive way of looking at a social networking service. People are going to pursue the behavior that results in their getting the best jobs.

Re:You can't win if you don't play (5, Funny)

mh1997 (1065630) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951817)

* You can't loose if you don't play.

What can't you loosen if you don't play? I can see a scenario where you can't lose if you don't play.

For what it's worth, I've never hired a person because of a facebook profile, but I have not hired plenty of people because of facebook profiles.

Re:You can't win if you don't play (4, Interesting)

speedtux (1307149) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951913)

For what it's worth, I've never hired a person because of a facebook profile, but I have not hired plenty of people because of facebook profiles.

Contrary to what you seem to think, the employer/employee relationship goes both ways, and finding and keeping good employees is just as important for you as finding a good job is for them.

So, if you decide based on my Facebook page that we aren't going to get along, it's better for both of us to find that out before you hire me.

On the other hand, if you don't have a decent and convincing online presence yourself, I may not even consider you, and you'll never know.

Get over it... (4, Interesting)

jopsen (885607) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951835)

As a kid I was always told not to give my real name and address online because there could be pedophiles... :)

* Loss of privacy.

Yes, but in general you shouldn't share information on facebook, twitter, you blog, website or anywhere else online that you don't want everybody else in the world to know about you.
That's as simple as it gets... Now really is your full name something you don't want to share with everybody else?
Also it's okay to be critical about what pictures you accept being associated to on facebook... And it's okay to censor your blog for comments you don't want people posting on it...
Personally, I've linked my slashdot account to my website, on which my name, address, email and phone number can be found. And so to the extent possible I try to only post stuff that I'd stand by (yes, sometimes I'll stand by for some bad comments too :))...
And if I absolutely must say something I don't want put my name on, then I'll consider if I really ought to post it anyway, and I must AC is always an option.

It's a lot like real life.

It that a metaphor people on slashdot understand? How about a car analogy.
(Sorry, couldn't help but wondering :) )

Re:You can't win if you don't play (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951873)

The whole social network phenomenon is a lot like the lottery:

* You can't win if you don't play.
* You can't loose if you don't play.

* You can't spell if you post to Slashdot, apparently.

Degree (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951485)

The only site I use is LinkedIn, because it is a good way to keep a thin attachment to people who are just contacts, but people I don't want to loose touch with entirely. That to me is far different than telling people misc details about my life that I consider to be private.

Re:Degree (4, Funny)

MillionthMonkey (240664) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951727)

LinkedIn is great because Kevin Bacon is on it and you can see how many degrees removed from him you are. He has "500+ connections" on LinkedIn. I'm only 3 degrees away myself and I'm not even in the entertainment industry.

Re:Degree (4, Interesting)

PPH (736903) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951773)

That's a good point. And it brings up another aspect of these web communities: Companies hire people for both what they know and who they know. The latter is often exploited by marginally ompetent people looking to latch onto someone else's coattails.

I'm already known in my professional community. So there are a lot of people trying to find details about me, like my wife's/kids'/dog's names so that they can go into an interview and BS people into thinking that we're the best of buddies.

As an employer, I don't place much weight on these sorts of resources because they are easily manipuated. And as an employee I wouldn't want to work for an outfit that placed too much emphasis on social networks. Its an engineering firm, not a frat house.

Re:Degree (3, Interesting)

turbotroll (1378271) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951857)

The only site I use is LinkedIn, because it is a good way to keep a thin attachment to people who are just contacts, but people I don't want to loose touch with entirely. That to me is far different than telling people misc details about my life that I consider to be private.

I share your opinion. Although I am very negative towards the very idea of social networking as such, I still find LinkedIn to be acceptable because it is professionally oriented (unlike Facebook and others). I primarily use it as a job seeking tool and use to receive some offers from time to time.

Re:Degree (4, Interesting)

happyslayer (750738) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951863)

because it is a good way to keep a thin attachment to people who are just contacts, but people I don't want to loose touch with entirely.

That's one of the best reasons to be on it. I started using LinkedIn (free, not paying!) to get in touch with old colleagues; that's it, nothing more. Recommendations and invitations are for only people I absolutely know (I reject any others out of hand.)

For any social networking sites, it's the Thermodynamics of Humanity--crap and chaos will increase. AOL, Yahoo Message boards (social, financial, etc.), the garbage always builds up.

On that note, are only a few places I still follow that have stayed "fairly" clean. Joke as much as you want, but Slashdot has stayed pretty close to mission over the years. Groklaw [groklaw.net] is still pretty good. Motley Fool [fool.com] is still fairly new, but has hung on to it's central theme for a couple of years now.

Think of social networking sites like sex, or dating: Before you sign up, imagine that some Glenn Close nutjob is going to hunt you down and kill your pets, or some pimply teenager is going to show up on your door step 16 years from now at the family reunion shouting, "Dad! Mama tol' me you owed us for that fling all those years ago!"

If those kinds of problems are foreseeable, don't use the sites.

Questionable advantage (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951497)

I am a very private and cautious person also when it comes to giving out personal information. I really doubt that your giving any personal information would actually bring in any substantial business and you would be best served by continuing to protect your identity.

Re:Questionable advantage (4, Insightful)

masdog (794316) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951563)

It depends on how you use the sites and what you put on your profile. I have a lot of detail on my Facebook profile, but the only people who can see that information are the people on my friends list. My LinkedIn profile, which is geared for a more professional atmosphere, contains parts of my resume and my previous work history because I use it as a professional networking tool.

Facebook has really fine-grained privacy controls that allows you to restrict who in your networks can see your profile, what they can see, and when they can see it. You can even go as far as adding "friends" to limited profile lists that restricts what they can see or blocking them outright.

Re:Questionable advantage (2, Insightful)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951877)

...the only people who can see that information are the people on my friends list.

So can anybody with a subpoena. Or even without one nowadays.

no offense.. (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951513)

...but I am surprised you are an IT admin and unaware of how both social and professional networking websites actually work. About the only thing strangers can see is your name.

Why are you afraid to put honest professional information out there? Nothing says you have to post everything about you. My profiles on social websites is very controlled and only portrays what I want. The basic rule, for me, is to keep my professional and business aspects of my life separate.

Lastly, I use my name for professional networking and a variation of my name for social. So, if a potential client e-stalks me with "Ruthered B. Hayes" they will never get the social sites I have under "R. Brenticus Hayes"

Bottom line, you control your image, be careful with it, but do not be afraid.

Re:no offense.. (1)

EpsCylonB (307640) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951627)

Lastly, I use my name for professional networking and a variation of my name for social. So, if a potential client e-stalks me with "Ruthered B. Hayes" they will never get the social sites I have under "R. Brenticus Hayes"

Unless they see this post as well.

Re:no offense.. (1)

Belial6 (794905) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951683)

That is exactly why I have considered making a hundred fake personas so that I can show that I am 'LinkedIn'. This would give perspective employers the ability to see that I had hundreds of satisfied clients who are undyingly loyal to me, and that back me up when I claim to have invented the internet, automobile, and the light bulb.

Re:no offense.. (5, Interesting)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951707)

Huh? LinkedIn makes no secret of the fact that they sell "premium" accounts which can see the full details of anyone, whether they are in your network or not. The result of this is that if you're even remotely worth hiring you will be nagged by head hunters day and night. This is why I kindly requested LinkedIn to take my info off their stupid site.. it took 3 strongly worded emails, but they did.

Re:no offense.. (5, Insightful)

Moxon (139555) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951799)

Should have tried a nicely worded one instead. That worked in one go for me.

Re:no offense.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951813)

Dude, there's no point clicking the 'Anonymous Coward' button if you're going to put your name in the post.

Yours sincerely,

Rodney A Greenwald

Re:no offense.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951847)

Finally! We have the name of Anonymous Coward, his trolling days are over.

It is entirely optional (5, Insightful)

Toe, The (545098) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951519)

I love this stuff... It is all optional. There is no requirement to do it. Oh, but if you don't opt in, your life will suck.

My favorite is medical privacy forms:
I, James T Victim, hereby give my consent to Dr. Scrupulous to share every facet of my every bodily function, my entire medical history (including incriminating stuff I have to reveal for medical purposes), and my entire credit record to whomever may request it for whatever reason. I understand that I can refuse to allow this sharing, but then the doctor may deny me medical care and I will likely die a horrible, painful death.

It propably won't.. (3, Interesting)

monse53 (1484197) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951537)

I was signed in to LinkedIn for a couple of years, and never had a single job offer (I'm MSc i Computer Science and have never been unemployed, just for the record). Neither have I heard of anyone else who has had any benefit from it. So it propably won't pay off. Or - has anyone got a job through LinkedIn?

Re:It propably won't.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951587)

I was signed in to LinkedIn for a couple of years, and never had a single job offer (I'm MSc i Computer Science and have never been unemployed, just for the record). Neither have I heard of anyone else who has had any benefit from it.

So it propably won't pay off. Or - has anyone got a job through LinkedIn?

I got a blowjob.

Re:It propably won't.. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951651)

you're welcome..

Re:It propably won't.. (1)

turbotroll (1378271) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951897)

I got a blowjob.

Was it from an 85-year old grandmother who removed her denture? If not, it doesn't sound like fun at all.

Re:It propably won't.. (1)

edcheevy (1160545) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951635)

Jobs won't fall from the sky just because you sign up with LinkedIn. Think of it more as a networking facilitation tool instead. For example, it makes it easier to target companies for informational interviews, since you can quickly and easily scan your contacts for links in companies you may be interested in. Any time you can avoid a cold call for something like that, you're a step ahead of the competition.

Re:It propably won't.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951653)

Some of my friends got RIMjobs.

Have you, you know... (1)

PaulBu (473180) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951665)

*ASKED* for one? ;-)

If anything, the fact that you do not get unsolicited job offers from random LinkedIn users speaks good about their "lets' be a bit more careful whom we show your real e-mail" attitude.

Paul B.

Re:It propably won't.. (3, Insightful)

dave562 (969951) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951745)

I just joined LinkedIn because of a job prospect that came up. Our phone system vendor wants me to design some Crystal Reports for them. She has a profile on there and has over 200 contacts. She is big on networking, online or otherwise. It's only a matter of time before I'm "Crystal Reports guy" in her social network. Like the OP, I generally try to stay away from Myspace, Facebook and the like. I made the exception in this case because someone who is offering me work told me that I could find even more work if I create a profile on there. My perspective on it at this point is that it can't hurt and it might help.

Re:It propably won't.. (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951843)

I was on LinkedIn.. Head hunters were nagging me day and night, so I kindly requested they take all my details off the site, and LinkedIn was happy to do it.

Re:It propably won't.. (2, Insightful)

Dragonshed (206590) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951849)

People don't hand out job offers, on or off LinkedIn. What may happen is recruiters may attempt to contact you if your profile is desirable.

I've had dozens of recruiters mail me through linked in over the last couple years, atleast one every couple of weeks. But that is missing the point. I'm less interested in making the recruiter's job easier and more interested in watching where my colleagues and former colleagues find new employment. *This* is the tool that is most interesting about linked in, traversing the connection tree of people you've work with from now to 10 years ago. And the person with the right mindset could use it to their advantage when looking for a new job.

Re:It propably won't.. (1)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951889)

I haven't used it to find a job, but I have used it to keep track of old coworkers to see where they're working now and to request references.

Re:It propably won't.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951937)

I get TONS of offers to phone interview from Linkedin.

Companies that have contacted me to request that I phone interview:

Facebook
Digg
Linkedin
Mint.com
Mozilla
CBS
Any number of recruiters who happen to represent random startups.

I get probably 3-5 requests a week, and I'm not anything special, just a PHP/Java dev. with a few years of experience. I have around 70 linkedin contacts and a couple of good recommendations.

The best part is, when the companies contact me I get a feeling of power over the situation, rather than feeling like the one who needs a favor. Even if it isn't true, it alters my attitude such that I better represent myself.

Although, to be fair, I'm about to start a job I didn't get through linkedin - so who knows...

Does the economy really affect your principles? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951561)

It seems to me that the argument that you set up is that you don't use the personal networking sites because you don't want to lose control of your privacy and trust a 3rd party with your data.

But since the economy goes bad, you saying that don't care about your privacy as much anymore?

Re:Does the economy really affect your principles? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951645)

No, he is currently employed, so finding a new job is a low priority for him. If he becomes unemployed or just anticipates becoming unemployed, finding a job becomes more important, probably more important than his privacy. The absolute value of his privacy doesn't change, but the value relative to finding a new job. "I was young and needed the money" doesn't (necessarily) mean the person's a slut.

What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951565)

I wonder if I should loosen up on the paranoia

You, sir, should be banned from Slashdot

Wait, what? (1)

edcheevy (1160545) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951569)

You're in IT and you think the only way people can put together your full name and your place of employment is through LinkedIn??

I know a ton of people (IT and other) who have made the leap. I have a greater awareness of what they are doing professionally as a result (as opposed to something like Facebook which is much more personal). If nothing else it increases my awareness of their career goals when I see something pop up that might be perfect for them. Just be sure to only post what you're comfortable having the world know and pour through the privacy options on whatever site you sign up with. It's anecdotal, but profiles from social networking sites (if you're sharing them publically) seem to shoot to the top of Google rankings. What you put on there WILL be seen by potential employers when they do the cursory Google search.

Social networking: not just for Facebook! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951581)

If you feel that you might get the ax, or really before that's a possibility, start reaching out to folks in the industry. Make sure everyone knows what you're up to, and keep your resume up to date.

A big thing is to make and maintain professional contacts at other companies. If you take someone to lunch every once and a while, that helps.

The comment about the lottery is correct-- if you don't play at all, you have zero chance of winning. But there's another aspect that's similar-- you're unlikely to win big on a fluke. More likely, someone who already knows your skills and likes you personally will think of you when there's an open slot. In the upcoming tough economy, there won't be quite as many "casting calls" for jobs-- people are going to seek out the workers they want, because it's an employer's market.

Use Social Networking to Defend Your Reputation (4, Insightful)

cyriustek (851451) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951585)

Social networking sites can be one avenue in which you lose your privacy. However, there is another side to this coin. Namely, do you want to be able to make your identity online, or do you want others to determine your identity?

By using LinkedIN, Facebook and others, you can craft a very professional image that is put forth. In kind, you can be selective as to who you allow as a 'friend' or 'contact.' Therefor, your professional image retains intact.

Obviously you want to avoid posting pictures of you doing your last beer bong, or wearing a lampshade on your head, whilst posting white papers, and pictures of you presenting at conferences.

Re:Use Social Networking to Defend Your Reputation (1)

autophile (640621) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951895)

Obviously you want to avoid posting pictures of you doing your last beer bong, or wearing a lampshade on your head, whilst posting white papers, and pictures of you presenting at conferences.

/me sadly puts away photo of wearing a lampshade on my head whilst posting white papers.

Re:Use Social Networking to Defend Your Reputation (3, Interesting)

Samschnooks (1415697) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951933)

...or do you want others to determine your identity?

I am a very private person and I do not share much information about myself. Anyway, one day, I showed up at a function with a girlfriend. Folks were a bit surprised because they all thought I was gay. Talk about folks determining your identity! I have also been accused of being an alcoholic because I do not like to talk about what I do between jobs.

I don't think a person should blab every minute detail about their life, but it is important to share a few things about yourself otherwise folks assume the worst. I have gone a bit far in preserving my privacy and as a result, it has hurt me because folks just assume I have a lot to hide.

LinkedIn is basically for business (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951595)

while FaceBook is more general. However, before you sign up with FaceBook, read their Terms of Use. It is pretty Draconian:

"By posting User Content to any part of the Site, you automatically grant, and you represent and warrant that you have the right to grant, to the Company an irrevocable, perpetual, non-exclusive, transferable, fully paid, worldwide license (with the right to sublicense) to use, copy, publicly perform, publicly display, reformat, translate, excerpt (in whole or in part) and distribute such User Content for any purpose, commercial, advertising, or otherwise, on or in connection with the Site or the promotion thereof, to prepare derivative works of, or incorporate into other works, such User Content, and to grant and authorize sublicenses of the foregoing."

Now, just below that there is a clause that says: "You may remove your User Content from the Site at any time. If you choose to remove your User Content, the license granted above will automatically expire, however you acknowledge that the Company may retain archived copies of your User Content. Facebook does not assert any ownership over your User Content; rather, as between us and you, subject to the rights granted to us in these Terms, you retain full ownership of all of your User Content and any intellectual property rights or other proprietary rights associated with your User Content."

If you look at that carefully, it says that the "license" will automatically expire... but it doesn't say WHEN. The when is given in the first part: you have granted them "perpetual" license. Maybe ending after forever is better than not ending at all... I don't know.

Further, they say that FaceBook does not assert ownership... of course not. You are the owner. But you have licensed them to do literally whatever they want with your data.

I wouldn't touch a site like that with a ten-foot pole.

Re:LinkedIn is basically for business (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951927)

No, if you read it correctly the perpetual license expires when you choose to remove your "user content".

ie the license expires at the earlier of forever, or when you delete everything off the site...

Good enough for Marks then good enough for me. (3, Funny)

auric_dude (610172) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951601)

I don't want to linked into to any club that will have me as a member.

Re:Good enough for Marks then good enough for me. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951893)

Good ol' Marx.

nice try (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951615)

Ok, Zuckerberg times are tough for everyone. Your terms of service thing backfired but this is no way to get new sign ups.

Privacy Is Dead, Get Over It (3, Informative)

mbstone (457308) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951619)

Privacy Is Dead, Get Over It [youtube.com] with Steve Rambam: This is the first part of Rambam's essential lecture, presented in five-minute snippets. It's like a good book that you don't want to put down, you'll keep viewing the snippets (or search for the entire lecture if you have time to view it all at once). Nobody who uses LinkedIn or any other of what Rambam calls "self-contributed data sites" should miss this.

Sales & Privacy (1)

holophrastic (221104) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951637)

Most VP's and other executives could care less about their own privacy -- any successful executive doesn't really have much in the first place. Remember, a lot of these people are actually forced to divulge their own pay structures as a part of being a public company. So for them to throw their details into such networking sites doesn't actually cost them anything -- it's just another phone book.

On the other side of the coin, you shouldn't allow these difficult sales times to influence your decision of these networking sites because they still won't help. Most of these networking sites are simply an out-sourcing of maintaining accurate contact lists. I doubt that you're in one of those industries where your clients and suppliers change contact information with any degree of regularity. And the ones that do probably become useless to you anyway, or keep you informed on their own.

Not to mention, in difficult times, these networking sites experience the same difficulties.

Privacy options (1)

tsvk (624784) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951639)

You seem to worry much about losing your privacy. Most social networking sites have rather extensive privacy settings, so you get to select in detail what should be revealed and to whom.

The problem of course then is that managing these privacy settings can be quite tricky, if you don't have a clear picture of what knobs you have available to turn.

Here is a rather recent and extensive walk-through of the most central privacy settings Facebook offers:

http://www.allfacebook.com/2009/02/facebook-privacy/ [allfacebook.com]

You're afraid to send out a resume? (4, Insightful)

im_thatoneguy (819432) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951643)

Wait... so you're afraid to post your resume online?

Who cares what your name is and where you work? The Yellow Pages are more invasive. They give your home address and name.

When you meet someone at an informal function do you keep you name and place of employment secret as well? Just what exactly are you afraid someone would do with this information?

When you send out a resume do you just list "'Company A', 'Company B', and 'Company C'" on your empoyment history? Or do you write it out and then black it all out with a marker like a top secret intelligence report?

Stop waffling and start getting noticed online. I've gotten numerous job interviews that I didn't even apply for because people were reading forums and thought I sounded competant and knowledgable. In fact so far I've never needed to even apply for a job.

If the only people who know about you work in your server room that's as far as your reputation extends. If they google your name which would you rather them find: Nothing or an insightful blog on proper network security procedures and a list of glowing praise from your superiors and coworkers?

You are your name. That's your brand. Sell it! Make it famous!

Who's the moron? (1)

4D6963 (933028) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951673)

since I know that just about every moron that has 'Vice President' or sits on the 'Executive Team' is already on LinkedIn and has no clue about why they should be trying to protect their identity

Here's a question to you Mr_Whoopass, why should they be trying to protect their identity, and by that I mean what you mean, which is making sure no one knows that someone named like you works at the place you work. It sounds as if we were talking about dangers that everyone is aware of to the point it's not necessary to mention them. Well I don't know what dangers we're talking about, so do tell me what's the worst that could happen.

Also, are you sure it was sceptic your mother taught you to be? It sounds to me like we left mere reasonable scepticism a long time ago.

fools (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951679)

This guy once told me he made up his own rap song:
 
Muthufsck Dre, Muthufsck Snoop, Muthufsck Death Row
Foo, for you comes my left blow.
 
I'm going to modify that a little bit:
 
Muthufsck Linked, Muthufsck Face, Muthufsck MySpace
Foo, for you comes my left blow.
 
Actually that second line doesn't rhyme very good. I need some help with that.

Can you afford not to be? (1)

skware (78429) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951685)

As an IT Administrator, your users are going to be increasingly using such things as Facebook, Myspace, Gmail, Linked-In etc. Can you afford to be left behind and not know what is going on in your environments? You'd be stupid to think you could.

No. Not Now. Not Ever. I'm Coming For All Of You! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951697)

If "Linked-In" was any good, they would PAY YOU for your information --and if you had decent parents, it would make for a more obvious decision to quickly run away from their offer.

You might have less opportunities at your disposal, but at least the folks who consider you aren't "control freaks" (which means they are less likely to kill your organs with on-the-job stress that your wife doesn't get paid for).

Don't listen to the kids! Privacy Does Matter.

Connections (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951723)

Past a certain stage of your career, its no longer what you know, but rather whom you know.

It's more of a professional site , catering to Engineers, VP's , etc, people that can recommend other people, and have something against that recommendation can stand.

For IT people, places like facebook, and myspace are the place to go, since their careers are still in the entry-level phase.

footprint (1)

funkelectric (931604) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951739)

I used to be on linkedin, but got tired of duplicating information that is already in my CV and on my website. Then linkedin has a way of nudging you towards filling in ever more stuff (previous employers et cetera), if I remember correctly perhaps even with some daft reward system. It has both free and paid-for services, and I very soon ran into the limits of the free service. Many of the establish-a-link e-mails I received felt tedious and some people like to farm links like, well, link farms. But first and foremost these days I wish to control my footprint on the web, especially regarding the type of information that linkedin requires. Hence I withdrew. It may well be that if I were unemployed or simply looking for another job linkedin could be useful. To me the uncertainty in the rewards and the cost of playing are too large.

job potential (2, Informative)

Johnny Mnemonic (176043) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951743)

Most jobs are found through networking and friends. Only the worst, lowes-end jobs are in the paper. That's plain fact. I've started over a few times, and I'm not interested in having to do it again.

I dunno if LinkedIn is the best place to grow your networking, but it's an avenue. If you're careful with it, I think it could be a valuable tool. I haven't yet had to put it to the test, and I hope I don't have to any time soon. But it's something that you need to build while you have a job, and not wait until you're already out of work.

I agree with another poster--of the networking social sites out there, Linked In appears to be the only one that has career value.

Re:job potential (1)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951957)

I don't agree. I've never gotten a job from a paper, but I have through Monster, headhunters, and job fairs (back in college). While one of these ended up being a bad match for me, none of them were bottom of the barrel job other than the right out of college one, which is supposed to start at low responsibility as you season. My current job was from a job board contact, and I was basically hired on to be the main man on my team and one of the top programmers at the company.

On the other hand, it would have to be a lose the house type situation before I'd consider taking a job interview from a friend. If you do badly there, either due to performance or due to politics, it would reflect badly on them. I wouldn't add that kind of stress to a friendship unless I had no other options.

Undoubtedly you can get good jobs from friends/family. I know people who have, I've even gotten people interviews. But its hardly the only way. And from my experience at company's I've worked for, less than 50% got their jobs that way.

My in/out rules (1)

papaia (652949) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951753)

Link-in with whom it may make sense, professionally only (Linkedin = mostly professional social network, vs. Facebook, Twitter, Socialedian, FriendFeed, Myspace, etc.) but definitely do NOT link with coworkers - it would make no sense (although I work in a company where almost all office employees have linked w/each other, to the point that no one can handle the internal "social noise").

As a credit professional... (4, Interesting)

svunt (916464) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951761)

I heart facebook & linkedin. Used to be hard to find high-value debtors once they left the country, now linkedin tells me where they are and who they work for. I work in Melbourne, and every week I lovate people in Istanbul, Dubai, Honh Kong, LA, Brussels....once facebook or linkedin gives me a bunch of info to start with, the rest is easy. Like other posters have noted, some people cannot afford not to have a presence on these sites. Works for me...KA-CHING

Kill all the LIONs. (1)

Animats (122034) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951769)

There are successful people on LinkedIn. There's also an army of annoying losers, called "LIONs", trolling for friend requests. These are mostly consultants and marketeers trying to use LinkedIn to spam. They get really annoyed if you click "I don't know this person", because a few of those actions turns off their ability to spam.

LinkedIn has a overreaching EULA like Facebook tried, but that's less of an issue because one can't upload much to LinkedIn.

do it (1)

adpowers (153922) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951791)

I'd be skeptical of someone, especially in IT, who has no online presence. I believe it is good to build up a brand around your name on the internet. You should be in control of what potential future employers see when they Google you. It is better for you to be in the top spot for your name then someone else talking about you, or something with the same name.

When I first joined the internet, I asked my parents if I could have a website on Geocities. They said no. I didn't listen and went behind their back to create it. I didn't have any info besides my first name, so there was no real harm (and I was smart enough not to meet up alone with random strangers, not that I was ever propositioned).

In 2001 I bought a domain named after me and blogged on it (although, it took years for me to admit it was a blog, since those had a bad stigma attached :) ). More recently I've posted the occasional technical entry. Because of this I've been cold called (well, e-mailed) from major companies asking if I want to interview.

It is 2009, nearly everyone has some sort of online presence now. It is unlikely you'll be targeted just for having your name out there. It is much more likely bad things will happen when a company you deal with is hacked and your information is stolen that way. Plus, you can use your presence as a defense. If I wasn't the top result on Google for my name, people might think I was an anti-semite author.

Andrew Hitchcock [google.com]

Yes (2, Interesting)

SecurityGuy (217807) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951807)

In a word, yes, you're being excessively paranoid. To be sure, there are bits of information you don't publicize. but I don't think your name and where you work, just by themselves, meet that criteria unless you're in the CIA or something. Your social, your credit card numbers, address, home phone number, and all that, sure. Keep those to yourself. I don't understand why your name and where you work is such a great secret. I think you vastly overestimate the value of knowing the John Doe works for Regional Restaurant Chain.

It's rare that I say this in a security context, but loosen up a little. :)

The opposite problem (2, Interesting)

RyoShin (610051) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951821)

I have thus far managed to stay completely below the radar and a search on Google has nothing on my real persona.

I actually have the opposite problem: my first and last name combination is so common that I doubt I actually appear anywhere in the first 50 pages of Google Results. Adding my middle name gets nothing. It's only when you add my university that you start getting hits that are me.

I used to think this was a cute benefit. However, with more and more employers doing searches, and my work being all about the web, I realized that having no results related to me could actually be negative. While I don't go out search for them, this insight has caused me to be much more lenient towards any site that is recommended to me, such as LinkedIn, or even an account on a career/job site. I still keep them fairly sparse, but it's better that I have something to point to ("No, that's some other FirstName RyoShin, I'm FirstName M. RyoShin, and THIS is my account on that site") to help ease any confusion.

I'm not gaining any privacy by doing this, but I don't think I'm losing any, either. Furthermore, I am gaining recognition and a firm reputation.

Linked-In (1)

AaronW (33736) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951841)

I have found Linked-In to be an excellent tool as a professional. It allows me to keep track of former colleagues and is proving to be invaluable now since I was recently laid off due to downsizing. Linked-in is geared towards professional contacts. It is not a regular social networking site. Most of my former colleagues are on it and it's great to see where everyone is working. It has features like specifying your current job status and leaving recommendations for people.

Don't be too paranoid (3, Insightful)

Todd Knarr (15451) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951881)

Consider this: your name, address and who you work for are hardly personal, private information (in most cases, at least). The first two anybody can find by opening the phone book. The last probably isn't instantly available to J. Random Passerby but generally isn't something you keep too private. I'd guess most of your friends know where you work, as does anybody they talk to about you. So I'm personally not too concerned about that information being on places like Facebook, Linkedin and the like. I actually put it up there myself so somebody else doesn't impersonate me or get mistaken for me (or if they do, I can point whoever's making the mistake at my page and point out that their mistake wasn't for my lack of having the correct entry up there).

Now, I'm not going to put details of my personal life up on those sites. It's strictly name, address, current employer, and a pointer to my Web site and resume. More than that, is not those social-networking sites are for as far as I'm concerned.

Depends on how you use it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951905)

With a name like "Mr. Whoopass", I'd hope you're not using your Slashdot account for anything serious. That being said, I'd go ahead and create a LinkedIn account with your real name and a separate email account, so that you could have two persona, one professional and one personal.

Frankly, I wish I'd have thought of creating this separation myself, which is why I'm posting this anonymously. I have a Slashdot account, but the email address that it's linked to gives a huge clue as to my real identity.

Since you're an IT professional, I'm sure you can find some potential issue with it, but unless you're in a very influential position, I seriously doubt that people would be overly interested in the fact that "J. Random IT Guy" is the same person who posts to Slashdot as "Mr. Whoopass."

Protect your identity by controlling your identity (3, Informative)

Nonesuch (90847) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951911)

I created a Facebook account solely because somebody with the same name as I already had one, and people were assuming his profile was mine. So by creating a minimal profile on that social networking site, I took better control over my identity.

Linkedin has definite professional benefits, allows you to maintain limited contact with former co-workers, people who you might later find working in the same city as you've just moved to, or the firm where you are thinking of applying for a job.

If you refuse to voluntarily publish positive information about yourself, what will potential employers find? If nothing at all, they may tend to assume the worst, or at least assume you have no notable skills, hobbies, friends or publications.

no online id == no xp (3, Informative)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951919)

Alot of time when going through resumes, if we try to Google the person, do a usenet lookup or other such things and can't find them anywhere, to us (when evaluating resumes), it means you are lying on your resume or have very little work experience. Mainly because people in IT use the internet day in and day out to communicate, ask the community how to do something and so on.

If you aren't communicating, it doesn't tell me that you just aren't communicating, it tells me you have little experience. And in a sense, because you aren't using this resource for what it is for, it is somewhat true. Start posting questions in forums, and creating an online identity. Some online identity is better than NONE.

this is a bad case of (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26951929)

one time I accidentally a fire engine giggle, and it fell over and went boom. dancing man fancypants blue flame hair elation yugo textual masturbation. stuff ur pants get up n dance yugo trax droppin' squance. dub platez r us get on board the disco bus meltotinic spig muthafuckin tuss. afx files the dj piles all the while oxygen guitar. all fun and games, but next day sip sip headache the coffee. 18lb inanimate metal rod can solve this!! liftlift allbetter. touch touch your tose, freeze, breathe 'n' poze. find the signal. what is the frequency, richard. what is the modulator, richard, for the processed vocals in milkman? a 4sho, its just fo decarayshun. kboogie. mork mork mork mork mork mork miff mandy. big big BIG UPS, powers an entire server rack it does. but over time, battery gas magic smoke puff puff, no longer the server rack shepower nemoar. toot toot final battery gas server bell whistle darkness chrrrwrnkkachunk, oh no the halon system, another .com bites the dust. this is why you don't invest in bogeys. tbhey tend to blow. anyways, back to the blue man of fire dancing behind this post window. someday, someone will view this post, and that background will show up again. is it happening to you? if so, feel special, it probably won't happen twice. blue man of dancing fiar is likely the bastard love child of a baccharistic raver and photoshop. he looks a lot like a comic book character reallsjkldfsd ok i'm bored of that. mark mark murk mwap mwump thump dump grump PUMP sump chil chill chill chill ice in the hip-hopper along cropper filler upn topper, wait wats my tracking number? your deli counter position unique MD5 code, orderly service guaranteed. this post will now end, on the order of my bowels, which must upload data via the porcelain modem.

Business cards (4, Informative)

Mr_Silver (213637) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951931)

I use LinkedIn in the same way that I would keep a business card that someone gives me. However, the advantages of LinkedIn are:

  1. When they move company, their details are automatically updated and I don't lose contact. I've got a load of business cards which I have no quick way of verifying if they're still accurate.
  2. I can export my contacts into a format which Outlook will happily read. Not a chance with Facebook.
  3. LinkedIn is geared around working connections, so you don't get all the fluff that you'd get with Facebook. This allows me to keep working contacts and friends separate.
  4. I can see how people are related to people I know - which is useful when I'd like to get some references from people I trust.
  5. It shows employees that when I say I have links to certain people in companies, I'm actually being truthful.
  6. It allows me to have a "way in" to a company as someone working there invariably used to work with someone else I know. I found a great software development team through a colleague of a colleague.
  7. It allows me to find people for specific requests easier. Someone I know wanted to talk to someone at Apple about iSync support for a device, LinkedIn provided him with the Product Managers name and a person they both knew.
  8. They have quite a good jobs selection which, whilst small, is generally more targeted to the roles you're interested in doing.
  9. It's great for being head-hunted or job hunting as a whole as recruiters can access your details (provided you let them) and offer you possible opportunities.

There are probably more. If I was forced to drop Facebook or LinkedIn, I'd drop Facebook as LinkedIn is significantly more useful to me.

Go ahead and make a page (1)

TuaAmin13 (1359435) | more than 5 years ago | (#26951941)

I'd create an account on each one of those sites. Whip it up so it looks kind of professional, but not that you're a stiff. List some favorite movies, books, and whatnot so you seem human. Put one of those stupid apps like lolcat or something.

I'd suggest making a page on at least Facebook (that seems to be the biggy these days, MySpace is for preteens and music bands. I haven't heard of LinkedIn before today). The reason being is because ANYONE can create a page, and that could mean someone makes a page of you. It could be your friends, making a stupid joke, or it could be some e-stalker. They could list a few tidbits of your real information, and now all of a sudden this page looks like its yours. By owning the page you'll eliminate that chance, though of course on Facebook if someone else posts a naughty picture of you everyone can still see it if your friends' pictures are unrestricted.
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