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on Jan 25, 2012 | hide | past | favorite

This seems to be more a comment on GitHire's core strategy and business model than it is an insight into the hiring market. Their model, while bold and innovative, seems to be incapable of delivering on its promises.

Recruiting is ripe for disruption, but I don't think GitHire got the formula right. Kudos to them for trying, but it appears to be a non-starter.

GitHire is a spammer and doesn't deserve our attention.


Hi LatchKey,

I'm really sorry that we sent you that email. We just launched a little over a week ago with this crazy idea, and were extremely surprised at how quickly we were overwhelmed with orders.

We made a bad judgement call in sending some emails to people asking if anyone is interested in jobs.

If it makes you feel any better, you can see that we aren't finding very many talented engineers, and we will likely need to refund a lot of money in a few days.

We are honestly trying to be a great service for software developers and employers. We need feedback from people like yourself to learn how we can be the best service possible to reshape the hiring industry.

We actually sent you an email, but never heard back. Please let us know if you're interested in continuing this discussion further on or off of a public message board.

Thanks for keeping us honest.

--------------------------------------------------------- Hi Jon,

Thank you for the bug report, and the criticism. I was surprised to see that you had not already disabled your profile, so I went ahead and disabled it for you.

We are a new service, and we are truly trying to create the best possible experience for software engineers. Sending you an email about our job openings was a mistake. I'm very sorry about that, and it won't happen again.

We recently implemented a feature where users can see job listings we have open in their profile and let us know if they are interested, so in that way we only contact people who let us know they are interested in specific job openings. I think that this is great start of a feature that could be good for everybody.

Thanks again, Steve ---------------------------------------------------------

Above is the form letter you sent me in response to me calling you out on spamming me. I wonder how many people also got that same exact email? Never mind the fact that the original email was a form letter too!

The part about 'surprised to see that you had not already disabled your profile' seemed pretty absurd given that there was no way that I could disable my profile from your site.

In fact, I shouldn't even have to disable the profile on your site. To begin with, you should have never created one for me, or anyone else. I certainly never asked you to do so and you've clearly violated GitHub's terms of service.

Why are there still profiles up on your site? Why do you feel it is necessary to post the big names first (http://githire.com/best) and try to profit from their profile information? It isn't like they are looking for jobs.

I'm sorry you made multiple bad judgement calls, but that isn't my fault. I also don't know why you expected a response from me. I really don't want to have anything more to do with your spam business.

Even the title of this HN article is misleading. You are basing the failure of your business to recruit people from GitHub on economic indicators? Seriously?

Really, guys, you're downvoting this quite reasonable complaint? [Edit: I realize that by the time I posted this, it was no longer downvoted, but I'm not going to ninja-edit beyond posting this disclaimer]

Take a look at http://githire.com/best - do you really think Linus Torvalds is actually looking for a job, let alone going through this site to do so? If not (which is obviously the case), how is it not spammy and misleading to put him as number 1 on a "best" list on a jobs site? That goes along perfectly with the story that latchkey has told about being approached, unsolicited, with unwanted interview requests, and makes me think somewhere along the line, somebody forgot to think about what was proper and what was not. That's not okay, and I'm not very willing to dismiss it as "oops, we were launching, so we took a few shortcuts", it's spammy behavior, plain and simple.

There's probably something that could be done in this space, but this all just seems super shady.

Just want to say this is an excellent response, humble, taking responsibility and genuinely saying sorry. Please carry on like this.

I do believe that latchkey mentioned some very valid points though, perhaps taking those on board and changing your strategy would be a better way to entice talent.

Bullshit. GitHire are HR spammer scum. I've gotten multiple requests for Rails and JS jobs. Look at my github profile. Clearly that is not my specialty.

And they do not respond when I point out that I'm clearly not a good fit for their form email. I should report them for CAN-SPAM because there is no way to opt-out of their emails.

This isn't an economic indicator. GitHire spammed me and all my coworkers with offers of a $10 Amazon gift card to interview at a startup. By doing this, they basically said our time was worth $10.

Unfortunately, the emails were sent as the company they were hiring for -- so GitHire didn't get the brunt of the ill will, the unsuspecting company that hired them did.

Agreed. That a start up recruitment site isn't generating the numbers the founders dreamed about is more probably an indicator of a poor business model, poor exposure or in this case alienating all prospective users by opting them in (spammy and suspicious behavior) and then exasperating the users further by not providing a "one-click opt-out". Whats the real difference between Githire and scrapping blogs and web sites for e-mail addresses and spamming them? I can't really see a difference.

I think GitHire is a great idea but I am not sure they have quite reached the status of "economic indicator". That would be like saying my new blog (http://www.kiteandcode.com) is the pulse of the blogosphere. It is not.

I understand the technical reason for this, but it sounds backwards. In order to opt out, I need to authorize GitHire with my Github account.

They already spammed my email once, so they have it. Send me an opt out email.

I was contacted by GitHire regarding a Lead Python Developer opportunity. My GitHire stats estimate that I'm in the top 5% of Githubbers (whatever that means). I'm flattered, but as a college student with just a few years of work experience under my belt, I can't imagine being in the top 5%.

"The search engine I made has returned no results. The internet must be empty!"


Hmm isn't it too early to write this off? Their about page states that they have 30 days to find 5 people for your job listing. Almost every page has more than 20 days left to find these 5 people, and although the current results do not look promising (based on the few introductions made) this page does not tell me anything about their review process. It is obvious that some aspects need to be tweaked (spamming issues aside) but everyone tends to make mistakes when they are creating a new product or service. Until they consistently can't meet their obligations I would not write off this business model.

I am not convinced by the underlying concept; I initially ran queries as well in Google to find Github users located in my town that I may be interested in meeting.

The thing is that these people are usually not the ones you can hire, they are more proxies that may help you build a network of connections which will help you reach out to a potential candidate.

In the end, I think you'd need to tap in a much wider community than Github to find your next hire; it's what the cool kids use but it's far from being the white pages of the development community.

They advertise no jobs at all outside of San Francisco and Houston. They base everything on GitHub, screwing over those of us who have been using Sourceforge, Google Code, Bitbucket, or some other open-source hosting service since forever. The first problem they can fix; the second is the fault of basing a business model on the institutionalization of the fad for GitHub.

Those are both non-issues. They're a startup. Their product is a two-sided marketplace, naturally geographically limited. Any other open source hosting service would do just fine. It may happen that github is the most insular and the one most likely to have a critical mass of programmers in certain skill sets (it seems to massively dominate for Rails folks).

Based on the error messages I get, I think they're running rails. Can anyone confirm?

I just opted out, but now I get an error when I try to opt back in.

The big problem that githire has is that it is an opt-out service and not an opt-in one.

Programmers are usually very savvy internet users and don't want to be opted in automatically. If I want to participate I opt-in.

Also the opt-out procedure where you have to authorize their application to get out is very counter productive to say the least.

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