I worked for LinkedIn for a bit and am now working at Facebook.
While I visit the site/app only every other week, I still think it's very valuable to connect to people I talked to at meetups and that I would like to stay connected with somehow. Some of the people I'd like to stay in touch with, don't have at twitter account or are so low frequency that I'd miss things I care about. I probably wouldn't connect with them on Facebook since to me it still feels a bit too "personal".
Considering that LinkedIn was instrumental in the two biggest "moves" in my career and fills a good niche for me, I personally like them as a network.
I agree that the UI is a bit annoying at times, but they're way better than they used to be in that regard. I don't even mind recruiter emails. I have a bit less than 5 years of experience, so I still think it's a bit flattering to receive them :)
So while linkedIn may have opened doors, it is pretty unlikely through something like HN or your own irl network, you wouldve ended up unsuccessful. My own feelings towards linkIn aside, anecdotally it certainly seems that it was useful for you. It certainly has the ability to provide great things, or speed up connections/opportunity.
I agree with the article in that it is a soft requirement for a lot of things:
Entrepreneur: Helpful for hiring, networking looking at competition, finding investors.
Freelancer: Getting gigs, proving reputation.
Bigcompany: online presence, hiring.
So while you certainly aren't unique in finding value in linkedIn, it is utterly painful to use and sometimes i feel like if I put my cursor in the wrong place I'll accidentally agree to realtime uploading of all my data & that of my friend.
As an aside, it really can't survive much longer:
* Users hate using it
* it is totally unpleasant and insisistant on you conforming to what it demands.
* signal to noise is so out of alignment it is painful.
* Companies have to deal with the need to be on the platform and endorse enployees who are incentivized to self-promote sometimes to the company's detriment.
* I personally, and I largely suspect this to be very common, have connections I don't know. Either we have drifted apart, were breifly engaged in something, or I was just to lenient with accepting/reaching out.
* Increasingly, it is becoming less profitable as it struggles to give away enough data to be useful, but hold back enough to upsell premium packages.
While facebook certainly seems to care little about privacy, there is a compelling engagement and feeling of human connection that is just not there with linked in.
They should just sell to salesforce, that way the data and privacy could stay just as exploitive, but they could allow users latitude to enjoy/benefit from it a bit more.
LinkedIn has been amazing for me and I find recruiter's messages flattering and a way to increase my salaray by telling them Im making more then I am. How high can they go. There are tons of recruiters hitting us tech people up each week on Linkedin ... one of those messages will turn into your next and way better opportunity.
I a HN reader since 2007 find LinkedIn incredibly useful and I use it everyday. The UI on mobile is fine, even the recent updated UI/design is decent; was really used to the previous.
That may very well be, but I have never heard anyone say this except on HN
Professionally, it is dangerous as you can't show coworkers the great job you found. Most of the articles are advertisements or a logo and smiling people holding laptops, and the jobs (as all sites) are just crawled from every other companies site.
I can only assume that if I have to pay to send you a linkedIn mail we're not connected, and if we are connected I would send you and email.
So, the only reason I go on linkedIN, is because it is too hard to write a crawler to parse what I can only imagine is like 10K LOC of JS, and copy paste the source into my crawler to pull the info. Also, for potential investors & enterprise customers
to view these profiles is $80 a month. So the top people who don't want to talk to us get unsolicited inbound emails from us because linkedin sold them out for $80 a month.
so yes this is HN, and yes I bloody hate LI.
I'm originally from Germany, so my professional network I developed while being a student turned almost useless after moving to the US.
I could have probably tried to establish a bit of an online presence through e.g. open-source work, but that tends to be a lot more time-intensive compared to just adding a few keywords about what I like and can do and a bit waiting :)
LinkedIn most definitely has its warts, but I think as an online resume and a way to connect professionals, it succeeds.
Exactly. And very importantly: it doesn't have any real competition. It is the social network for professionals to network on, get contacted by recruiters, post their resume, etc. Facebook doesn't have all that, and FB is for your personal stuff anyway, and anyone who mixes their personal life on Facebook (with inane posts about politics or cat videos or whatever) with their professional life is asking to never be hired anywhere. Twitter obviously is useless for the things LinkedIn is used for.
So until something comes along which does the stuff LinkedIn does, but better, we're stuck with it.
This is an interesting angle. There was a time when Facebook was only friends and family. My impression is that (for better or worse) this is changing rapidly. I wonder if Facebook will try to get into one of the fields mentioned in the four points in rdli's comment.
- contact information for professional contacts in one place, updated by them
- job offers (yes, mostly good or at least decent)
- can look up people to see their experience and common contacts
- updates on what previous colleagues are up to.
More here: http://henrikwarne.com/2013/08/21/linkedin-good-or-bad/
LinkedIn is great if you just want to endlessly socialize with recruiters. Don't worry about finding them: They'll all try to connect with you and chat you up about one of their jobs that is just like the one you have but at another company. Hell, you might even get an interview out of it, but good luck turning that into an actual job in today's picky environment.
And if any of those LinkedIn recruiters are reading this, Try This One Neat Trick That Candidates Love: Instead of approaching someone with a job posting that's basically what he did 2 years ago or what he's doing today, approach him with what he might want to be doing 2 years from now. You'll get better responses, I guarantee it.
I think it is a language thing. I have noticed that non-native English speakers tend to refer to job ads, recruiter contacts, and such as "job offers". I think it comes down to what sense of "offer" you are using: "to give someone the opportunity to accept or take something" or "to make something available".
As for how they should approach you, I recently got annoyed enough by bad approaches to write a blog post about it: http://henrikwarne.com/2015/11/22/recruiting-software-develo...
Why do you socialise with them? Every few days I check in and accept all connection requests (almost all recruiters). I have email notifications turned off so their messages to me just get ignored. Then when it came time to find a job I replied to three or four of them with my requirements, picked a few companies I liked from each, and had interviews setup. Much more efficient than me having to find these companies myself.
I have gotten to the point that whenever I consider a client, job offer or employee, I:
- google them for general information
- look them up on LinkedIn to see what they've done professionally and/or if we have anyone in common. (Yes, they may see I have checked out their profile--so what?)
- look for them on twitter (much lower hit ratio)
All this gives me a much rounder perspective on a person than I would have without these resources.
> Yes, they may see I have checked out their profile--so what?)
You can actually turn that off - it means you won't be able to see visitors to your own profile, but I don't care about that information either so I have it disabled.
I actually like to see who has looked at me (I guess it is an ego thing), but yes, that's a good point.
Speaking of ego, one of the developers I worked with recently said, jokingly, that LinkedIn is where she goes when she's feeling down, because she has recruiters contacting her all the time (she has a number of years of Angular experience).
Caveat: I'm unfamiliar with the US/EU status quo for this category; maybe there are better options in those markets?
Your mileage may vary, but as a WASPish male mid-level dev based in London, this is true for me. I can appreciate that people outside that circle may get more value from LinkedIn.
LinkedIn on the other hand gets me maybe one offer per month on average.
I also have a blog at http://henrikwarne.com/ but I have never received any job offers via it.
I go to very few meet-ups, but the ones I've been to have never generated any offers. So in my experience, LinkedIn wins hands down in that respect (I'm in Stockholm, Sweden).
Maybe they found you on LinkedIn :)
I remember trying to figure out how to unsubscribe to emails from (I think) careerbuilder a few years ago and it was an absolute mess.
>>> maybe there are better options in those markets?
One site that seems most nimble right now would probably be indeed. They are growing a lot particularly here in europe and are more flexible in their partnering agreements. I work at the moment for a SaaS recruiting product, and I know all the big players are a pain to work with for integrations.. just reams of red tape.
Another thing that is far more common in europe is that the job sites are much more fragmented. There are so many craigslist type sites that are driving lots of traffic that recruiters want to integrate with.
1. They have an advertising business, that sells to marketers.
2. They have a recruiting business, which sells to recruiters.
3. They have a individual (networking) business, which sells to individuals.
4. They have a sales business, which sells to sales people.
While they all have a core basic similarity (use a rich database of professional people), when it comes to monetization of this core platform, there are little conflicts that add up over time. For example, for #2, they should make it as easy and free and valuable for people to join and update their profile. But then that conflicts with #3 a little bit, because a valuable feature is looking at other people's full profiles -- but that means you can't charge for individual subscriptions. And so forth.
Secondly, you absolutely do not want to start ranting about "principles" or "ethics" during an interview - or being overtly negative about fairly common-place things - unless you're pretty sure they're looking for RMS and your beard is looking exceptional that day.
But, all that said, I think you could probably get out of a "Why don't you have a LinkedIn profile?" scenario in a fairly anodyne way just by saying something like, "I'll be honest, I used to have one, but I got sick of the spam."
from the link:
> DON'T buy a parrot figuring that it will be a fun surprise for me. To acquire a parrot is a major decision: it is likely to outlive you. If you don't know how to treat the parrot, it could be emotionally scarred and spend many decades feeling frightened and unhappy. If you buy a captured wild parrot, you will promote a cruel and devastating practice, and the parrot will be emotionally scarred before you get it. Meeting that sad animal is not an agreeable surprise.
Sounds like a valid point to me, parrots really do live forever.
What other high school cliquey things do you expect on an interview?
That you know of. The most common negative response would most likely be an eye roll and going elsewhere/talking to someone else.
But you won't notice you've not received offers of employment on linkedin (because you don't have a linkedin account) or missed out on social events on facebook (because you don't have a facebook account - and won't necessarily see the photos/aftermath statuses etc).
Imagine you tell me that by not joining a certain club in my town, (golf anyone?) that I’m missing out on job opportunities, social events, even marriage possibilities.
Well, yes, obviously I am not doing some of those things with my time. But I’m doing other things with my time. So in what sense am I “missing out?”
I’m only missing out if I know for fact that I would gain a deeper sense of satisfaction from those other things. And if I’m currently happy, the onus is on the person telling me that I’m missing out to prove I’d be better off joining the club.
Naturally, if my days are empty and my heart sad, that’s different. But coming back to LinkedIn, the simple fact is that lots of people who aren’t on LinkedIn think they’re doing just fine.
The frustration is that it could be so much more. They have the richest demographic of customers and the worlds best human capital map. They could be doing so much more than paid Lead Generation for salespeople and recruiters. (And this is coming from someone who has used it for both)
And yes, it could have been (or could be) so much more than just recruiter-oriented. Something as basic as letting me keep notes about my relationship with someone - where did we meet, who introduced us, etc - would have made them truly indispensable to an entire generation.
"What if I lose out on an opportunity, or seem strange, because I'm no longer on LinkedIn?"
If I ever end up in a world where it's only possible to get a job using LinkedIn, I can probably recreate my profile, along with contacts, and recommendations in a week or so.
Clients from LinkedIn in are way more high maintenance on average compared to StackOverflow/SE and GitHub. Maybe it's not as bad for recruiters.
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If you're into that sort of thing, you could take a gander at my
Without them, I'd pretty much never open the site.
...straight to my spam folder.
The only reason I still have a Facebook account is "in case" I ever need to contact some of those old associates or school friends (a bit like hoarding old computer parts - I might need them one day!). I still have a LinkedIn account because I changed industry and thought I should at least have some way of contacting old business associates if I ever needed a way back.
Otherwise, I'd have deleted both accounts. They are of no practical use to me on a day to day basis, and I only hold on to them for a "just in case I need to contact someone" situation.
I did this a few years ago. Have a nice list. Never email any of them :-/
On top of that the near non-cessant spamming from job recruiters "HEY BRO YOU WANNA JOB BRO PAY REAL GOOD", seeing ex-coworkers humble brag.
It's a cognitive dissonance at best, you expose yourself more to the non stop flow of information, you are going to get burnt out.
After quitting LinkedIn I feel great like there was a huge baggage following me around. With all these crazy shit going on around the world like people getting doxxed and swatted, I just don't feel safe to expose information voluntarily just because all the monkeys are doing it.
Monkey see, monkey do. A human may see what other humans are doing but the higher consciousness will lead to contrarian behaviors.
I thought if everyone is just gaming it like that, the whole platform is totally worthless and even worse.
Needless to say, I now have a very minimal presence on it and never anymore link with recruiters as they will suck you dry timewise.
It's really just a "Hey" that I'm sending to some long-lost co-worker's mailbox. Often, endorsing someone will spur a reconnection or an email conversation with that person that I otherwise might not have had.
I would never consider the linkedin skills recommendations when looking to hire someone.
I use my personal network or inmails (paid for by my employer) to contact people and my personal page is a landing page for developers.
I disabled the scrolling facebook like front page and I use buffer to post articles for me during the workday.
It's mostly helpful for getting job offers and generating interest in yourself. Even I get multiple recruitment messages a day so I can only imagine what developers inboxes look like. The problem for some people who haven't found it useful is most recruiters only target the young developers who look like they will be easy placements.
This would explain why I seem to get more add requests/inmails than nearly anyone else I speak to. Thanks for the clarity.
I spend a lot of time on LinkedIn (3 hours on average a day) and early in my career when I was avoiding making cold calls I found what made other peoples LinkedIn profiles stand out and copied them. Now my profile is a personalized and tweaked version of the 100's of interesting profiles I've viewed.
I do a lot of profile optimization internally for my company and team but I have thought about making some type of public guide or offering a service but it seems like there is no good way to edit or suggest edits to a profile without actually logging into someones account and that raises obvious recruit risks for most people.
However If your interested I can send you the powerpoint deck I use to give meeting on this topic.
I've been on linkedin almost from day one and I still haven't found anything even remotely comparable to Linkedin in value. It's like the google of professional networks. Sure you can use other networks that will make you feel like you are missing something.
Are you joking? I've never been on LinkedIn and still get spam from it constantly (though less nowadays than few years back).
I don't get any spam from them. I get info on messages, people viewing my profile and things like that. This is actually stuff I want.
Besides that I don't get any spam from them.
Standard advice for years has been don't unsub from email you haven't subbed to.
That's pretty much the definition of spam. It's unsolicited, it's bulk, it's email.
I haven't seen anyone claiming Linkedin keeps sending after that but I might be wrong.
Useful parts of linkedin (not that many):
- Ability to connect with people you have worked with and keeping in touch with them. Knowing who is doing what profesionally in your circle. This is useful if you know how to use the network to your advantage.
- Decent Job offers from good recruiters once in a while (very rare but it does happen). I call this "Good Recruiter spam"
Things that suck about linkedin:
- Horrible UI and dark patterns.
- Bad recruiter spam. Basically the generic copy/paste messages or my favorite "I would like to connect with you on linkedin" generic message when trying to connect. Really ? You want to connect with a stranger but cannot bother writing why ?
- Groups (just another way of spam)
- The "App" spam on mobile phones. No linkedin, I don't want to use the App. Let me open linkedin.com ON mobile. there is such a thing right ?
I'm not longer a developer, however, so I do wonder how much of the spam is concentrated just of filling technology positions. Dev positions are not easy to fill in just about any U.S. market, so it makes sense why they'd be so aggressively sought after.
We often forgot the burden of online life of those without technical skills. Imagine having all those LinkedIn mails end up in your inbox.
I don't know if it's an obligation, I think it doen't become suddenly okay to spam people whenever it's in your interest.
I also use it to keep track of former colleagues who were difficult to work with and avoid applying for jobs where they are working now. Even if I don't end up working with them again, it's an indication to me that those companies have a defective HR department so they've probably hired other difficult people too.
No seriously, I remember reading articles about their shady behaviour from the very beginning. They were never useful for any kind of social interaction and from as far as I remember, their website was terrible.
I deleted my account 5 years ago and my career didn't suddenly grind to a halt. Nobody has ever even asked me once for a LinkedIn profile nor turned me down for a job because I didn't have one. I must live in a different bubble from all the people in this thread insisting that it's a requirement at every turn in their lives.
Facebook can be opted out of without THAT long of a sidelong glance because it's an overlay of something more temporary in life - a yearbook, or little black book.
Just try saying to a prospective client/recruiter "oh, having a resume/cv is for the naive unwashed masses" ... because that's what most would hear.. the rest will probably be the best candidates ever (if they sincerely agree)
Also removing your profile from the network is a bad use experience: I had to send a customer support request to close it because I had more than 500 connections.
I think that I will build something in the near future because I like the idea of collecting connections and achievements concerning my professional career, but I'll never use LinkedIn again.
As an additional bonus, I can now view some people's LinkedIn accounts without giving myself away. So I get to look people up without any of the downsides. I guess this benefit will disappear if people start to abandon LinkedIn, but for now it's nice to be able to creep on people anonymously.
The issue is they built a revenue model that rewards quantity over quality for content and that prioritises recruiter and sales lead generation over individuals using it to keep in touch with their professional network. I’ve never used it to find or move jobs.
I was trying to think about how they might be able to reverse the spam factory it’s become and I don’t think it’s possible without a different revenue model.
I’d be interested to see if they start to move towards the ‘Linkedin Qualifications’ platform idea - if you use Linkedin for e-learning it would give you a reason to use the site every day, you would be tied in as you not only display your existing qualifications there but they also award them and it would let them generate revenue from users (charging for the courses) without the reliance on the premium ‘here you can spam people’ accounts.
This opinion piece on Tech Crunch nails why this happens is pretty accurate too > http://techcrunch.com/2016/02/23/linkedin-problems-run-deepe...
Maybe that's why they are having such a difficult time and are hitting a wall and the stock took a dive.
I have no idea how they managed to get such a high reputation.
Speaking of procrastination, the original author should consider that procrastinating is observationally the same as not using. The original author is of the strange binary opinion that having an account means having to use the service. There's nothing wrong with setting up an account then basically abandoning it. Thus no weird interview discussions about "no account". I'm part of the post-FB, post-linkedin, post-twitter generation and I don't use those services more than once a year or so, but I do have accounts specifically designed and curated for the amusement of older HR-types. Aside from social media job descriptions, no interview ever ended early because "I don't goof off online very much". So set up the account and procrastinate at using it.
Still couldn't find the account inception date. Gave up.
My only comment is they could do better by cutting down on recruiter spam and poorly thought out sales pitches.
Just increase the amount of money to send unsolicited emails, especially to more senior people.
Maybe they could have a chat with Amazon as well. Those people abuse LinkedIn way too much.
Oh. My. God. This site is like visiting GoDaddy to try to buy a domain, except worse. It's almost entirely dark patterns. Every time I clicked anything, the file upload dialog on my computer popped up.
Now I'm really conflicted about continuing to use it. Seems like I'm stuck -- been on almost 11 years now, and I've built up quite a network. But who wants to put up with that kind of suck? What kinds of professionals would use it regularly? It's not very reassuring.
Use the contact list, because people update their contact info, you can contact all acquaintances easily without having to keep track of their contact info yourself.
Keep your resume up to date. Looking for a job, somebody asks you for your resume? Point the to LinkedIn.
Haven't regretted it.
That plus the fact I have to be ever so careful to never hit that "search for contacts in email" button that randomly pops up
Resume builder seems like a feature away.
Apt summary of the perverse aspects of the so-called "network effect" if i've ever saw one...
They are the perfect amount of bad for the sake of their business: Their minefield of garbage makes them loads of money, but it's not so bad that a successor can unseat it (ie not at MySpace levels).
LinkedIn does a fantastic job of living on that edge. If they keep being shitty but not super shitty, they'll continue to win.
If other developers like myself leave, then the recruiters who pay premium to be able to spam developers like myself will leave to. Then the model collapses.
In fact, the apps that don't bullshit me are the ones I use most (gmail, hn, craigslist, podcast websites).
Skype, Whatsapp, Twitter, LinkedIn are come to my mind (a few of my personal list), heck even Flash & Java Runtime (same problem different field). For the lack of better and popular alternative we have to stick with these. LinkedIn being on of the prime examples.
Twitter on the other hand has a different problem, solutions such as FriendFeed was a much better, almost by all means compared to Twitter (you could actually have a sensible conversation and while keeping almost all the benefits of Twitter) yet it didn't make people to switch from Twitter. Later acquired by Facebook, so I guess they succeeded.
I looked at my coworker's Windows Skype and was amazed to find a blinking advertisement he couldn't remove - did it by moving that area of the window offscreen.
Best example is now the ability to send PDFs. Making this the first button on the sent menu will totally make me want to use Whatsapp for all my document handling activities.
This is similar to those stupid emails which would force users to click through, login and then read the message instead of just including the message itself in the email. Which to me is insane.