Saturday, February 09, 2013

I am now Linked In

I may not be on Facebook, but I'm definitely on Linked In. I've had a LinkedIn account for years, but I never really bothered to do anything with it until recently. One reason for my sudden refocus on LinkedIn is that, lately, my email in-box has been bombarded with LinkedIn-related emails, and they finally became so annoying that I decided to discover what, exactly, LinkedIn was. What had I signed up for?

Now that I've labored long and hard over my profile, I think I have a better notion of LinkedIn. It seems to be a sort of Facebook for nerds and serious people. It lacks-- praise Cthulhu-- all of the cutesy appurtenances that make Facebook such a vomitous form of social networking. No goddamn Mafia Wars, no fucking Farmville, no stupid photos of frat-boy shenanigans. It's a much quieter, more peaceful district of cyberspace, and I like it already. It's social networking for the civilized.

If I'm not mistaken, LinkedIn began as a website for job-related networking. The idea was to put you and your résumé out there in the hopes that someone might come along and scoop you up. This makes LinkedIn much more focused and purpose-driven than the random and sloppy Facebook. Now, though, LinkedIn seems to be sliding toward a more casual paradigm. "Connecting" is the LinkedIn version of Facebook's "friending" (why isn't it "befriending"?), and given LinkedIn's 200 million members, it's possible to amass as many connections as one can have on Facebook. I currently have only twenty-some connections-- a measure of my introversion, perhaps. Some of the people with whom I'm now connected have hundreds of contacts. Fearsome party animals, they.

In any case, I'm now on LinkedIn. I don't know how this might benefit me, especially since I have an introvert's tendency to hit "Ignore" when someone I don't know tries to connect with me (sorry, random French dude). But if you're an employer, and you're willing to offer me a job in the $50,000/year salary range, with good benefits, decent working hours, generous vacation time, and strong job security, I'm all ears.


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