Wednesday, April 23, 2014
In theory, it’s a social network disguised as a professional network. It will help you find jobs, survey applicants, and facilitate connections. And maybe it’s a godsend if you’re a lawyer or in some business-related profession. I don’t know any comedy writers who got staff work because thirty-five colleagues endorsed him as funny.
Endorsements are a key feature of the site. When I’m on Linkedin, boxes will pop up inviting me to endorse people for specific areas of expertise. Half the people I don’t even know. And they keep popping up day after day. “Please love me. Please love me.” If I see a friend pop up I will always endorse him for… whatever. It just takes one click.
Only seven say I’m good in play-by-play, five praise me as a published author, and my sense of humor is endorsed by five. But forty-seven admire my video production. I don’t even know how to download a video production app.
But the best of all is that three people endorse me for Thai Massage. (Only three?)
Do employers really take this stuff seriously?
I have a friend on Linkedin, who as a goof, listed her profession as “farmer.” Sure enough, she has all these endorsements for bailing, irrigation, and cattle rustling.
Scrolling through the home page, the posts are more professional in nature than Facebook. Lots of links to articles and videos interwoven with blatant self-promotion, which is fine with me. Blatant self promotion is the only reason I’m ON social media. And Linkedin has its own version of cute cat pictures and adorable children photos. It’s called “quotes.” People share inspirational sayings like:
"You can neither win nor lose if you don't run the race." - Singer, David Bowie
“Failure will never overtake me if my determination to win is strong enough” ~Og Mandino
"Comparison is the thief of joy. " ~Theodore Roosevelt
Give me kittens hugging stuffed teddy bears.
The truth is, if Linkedin subscribers really believed any of that they’d be working instead of killing time scrolling through a social network.
But maybe that’s the saving grace of Linkedin. You can go on it at work and still feel like you’re engaging in a professional endeavor. I find the site interesting on a human behavior level. And I’m not so enamored that my massage clients complain that I’m late for appointments.
By Ken Levine at 6:00 AM