Monday, November 10, 2008

"Keep your Myspace page private or take it down" a career counselor advises, quite bluntly


The Career News this morning has a bruque posting “Things the election taught us about job interviews,” link here. Career News says that the posting came (abridged) from Usnews, a periodical known for brevity and high-level stories, but I couldn’t find it online there.

There is a rather blunt command in this piece of “advice”: ” Stay professional on the Internet. Make your MySpace page private or take it down. You need to make sure that whatever you post there, you'd also want on your resume.” (Sorry, when I titled this posting I changed the "make" to "keep". What's done is done.)

That sounds like the job applicant is weak and powerless, begging for a job that, given this economy, the employer can yank away at any time (particularly it it’s GM). Or, perhaps it expresses the moral sentiment that no one has a right to be “famous” until he “pays his dues.” Is there a bit of turf protection going on here? I find the appearance of such an attitude like this in a career newsletter quite offputting. I wonder how others think. The notion that the recent election campaign and "Saturday Night Live" candidate impersonations would lead to a career page posting like this is just plain bizarre.

True, it you don’t feel “publicly” proud of the work you do for a living, maybe you shouldn’t have the job.

By the way, I did find an older article from August 2008 in US News, “7 Signs Your Interview Went Well.” No belligerence here.

The bottom line, for me on this issue of personal blogs or profiles and the workplace, it all depends on what the job is, and how public the job is going to be.

Picture: My giving a talk about my writings at a Unitarian Church near Minneapolis, 2002

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