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Ask Slashdot: Is an Online Identity Important When Searching For Technical Jobs? 358

Posted by samzenpus
from the I-don't-know-who-you-are-anymore dept.
First time accepted submitter quintessentialk writes "I'm looking for a new engineering job. I'm in my early 30s, and have a degree and some experience. I don't have an online presence. Does it matter? Is a record of tweets, blog posts, articles, etc. expected for prospective employees these days? What if one is completely un-googleable (i.e., nothing comes up, good or bad)? Though I haven't been 'trying' to hide, I only rarely use my full name online and don't even have a consistent pseudonym. I don't have a website, and haven't blogged or tweeted. I'm currently in a field which does not publish. Should I start now, or is an first-time tweeter/blogger in 2013 worse than someone with no presence at all?"
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Ask Slashdot: Is an Online Identity Important When Searching For Technical Jobs?

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  • by pubwvj (1045960) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @11:54AM (#44085307) Homepage

    What do you do do?

    If you're in IT especially and you're invisible you're suspicious. Lots of job applicants. What makes you stand out?

    • by Frosty Piss (770223) * on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:02PM (#44085379)

      If you're in IT especially and you're invisible you're suspicious. Lots of job applicants. What makes you stand out?

      I expect to see this opinion in more than a few posts on this thread, yet I'm surprised.

      I just can't imagine how spending one's time "tweeting" or maintaining a Facebook page has much to do with what kind of employee I want, unless perhaps those "tweets" particularly socially unacceptable.

      I *might* do a search of technical forums to see what kind of tech questions and answers my applicant is giving / asking.

      But why would I - why SHOULD I - give a shit about my applicant's "tweets" unless perhaps they deal with bizarre rape fantisies or something, in which case I might reasonably wonder why my applicant isn't smart enough to use an alias?

      In other words, in my opinion, your "tweets" and Facebook prattle have no interest to me in terms of evaluating your job skills. In fact, I might be uncomfortable with someone who spends too much time in an on-line world.

      • by uniquename72 (1169497) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:15PM (#44085471)
        If your idea of "having an online presence" is tweeting and having a Facebook page, I would not hire you.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        I agree completely. I would more likely hire someone with no Facebook or Twitter account because people with these, tend to spend half their work day checking, updating, chatting on it rather then working

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by datavirtue (1104259)

          Je suis entièrement d'accord. Je serais plus susceptibles embaucher quelqu'un sans compte Facebook ou Twitter parce que les gens avec ceux-ci, ont tendance à consacrer la moitié de leur vérification de la journée de travail, mise à jour, bavarder sur elle plutôt que de travailler

      • Indeed, none of this stuff is an issue when looking for a job. I wonder what these guys with 100,000+ contributions to StackOverflow are doing with their life. I'm too busy coding and don't even have time to ask questions on there, let alone post 1000 times even in five years.

        • They're probably writing all the APIs and libraries you're using.

        • by pspahn (1175617) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @01:23PM (#44085957)

          I wonder what these guys with 100,000+ contributions to StackOverflow are doing with their life.

          Some of them are doing quite well, actually. I have been a frequent reader of Alan Storm's [alanstorm.com] site, as he seems to be one of the very very few who have managed to take a large chunk of poorly documented code and literally write a book on it. He's a regular contributor to Stackoverflow (and the Magento offshoot) and I can say without a doubt, his "online presence" makes him a very sought-after developer (aside from, you know, being a good developer to begin with).

      • by Cabriel (803429)

        I expect to see this opinion in more than a few posts on this thread, yet I'm surprised.

        I just can't imagine how spending one's time "tweeting" or maintaining a Facebook page has much to do with what kind of employee I want, unless perhaps those "tweets" particularly socially unacceptable.

        Two words: Technological familiarity. Just because a person managed to get a degree and some experience doesn't mean they are good at what they do. Using more "tech" shows greater ability to adapt and learn. To a strong degree, it can also be a stronger indicator of personality traits which may help the job and also show those traits which could hurt the job. After all, someone who tweets and posts pictures about getting hammered at work (or any other imaginable bad practices) probably isn't the applicant y

      • I just can't imagine how spending one's time "tweeting" or maintaining a Facebook page has much to do with what kind of employee I want, unless perhaps those "tweets" particularly socially unacceptable.

        I keep seeing positions that ask for your github username and list of opensource projects you've committed to.

        Which is a bit narrow minded, I've done probably 30 hours worth of coding in my free time last week, but none of it's in github, and never will be.

        Not all the opensource stuff I use at work is buggy e

        • by julesh (229690) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @01:09PM (#44085869)

          Which is a bit narrow minded, I've done probably 30 hours worth of coding in my free time last week, but none of it's in github, and never will be.

          This.

          Some of us are working on non-open-source projects, because we have ideas we think might be profitable.

          Some of us are working on projects that may become open source but don't want to publish until they're ready for end users (which could, in many cases, take years).

          Some of us are working for startups that demand 80 hours a week of our time and don't have any time left for personal projects.

          Not everyone can be judged by the same metrics.

          • by tepples (727027)

            Some of us are working for startups that demand 80 hours a week of our time and don't have any time left for personal projects.

            Is there a reason why the entire stack of line-of-business code created for this startup has to consist entirely of "non-open-source projects"?

        • by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @01:43PM (#44086087)

          "Which is a bit narrow minded..."

          Thank you for confirming my own opinion. In the past, when I was looking for more work, several times I've been asked before just about anything else if I had a github account, and and under what name.

          I've spent a lot of time on private projects under NDA, which obviously don't go on github. I've offered to supply redacted sections of code. Etc. But it was clear in a couple of instances that having a strong github presence was necessary before they wold even consider someone.

          That practice discriminates against people who are too busy actually working and trying to make a living to spend 100 hours on somebody's open source project. Sure, it's a good thing to do. But don't punish people who don't have as much opportunity as others.

          Using github as a primary, or even worse only, criterion for hiring is just not very smart. Without claiming to be one of the best and brightest myself, I can see that by doing so they are rejecting some of the best and brightest out of hand, which does both parties no good.

          Sure, take github and the like as a couple of extra brownie points in the developer's favor. Everything else being equal, I'd hire someone who is involved in charitable work over the other guy... but the key phrase is "everything else being equal". I would not use it as a primary basis for hiring in a technical field.

          • by nbritton (823086) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @03:16PM (#44086877)

            Attorneys need to do probono work to keep their license, why is it too much for you to carve out a few hours to put up a portfolio of your work on GitHub?

            • Attorneys sometimes fudge that "probono work" label. ... and sometimes the client finds out, as a friend of mine did.

              That said... what "your work"? I been working for companies, writing proprietary code. The closest I could come with that work is, as a prior poster said, "redacted work done for a previous employer". At which point, why am I putting it on GitHub instead of sending it directly to inquiring employers?

              Oh, you are saying "do a little work for an open source project", are you? Couple week

      • by mysidia (191772)

        I *might* do a search of technical forums to see what kind of tech questions and answers my applicant is giving / asking.

        The applicant probably have posted on such forums using a handle or assumed name. Many people don't use their real name

        Furthermore, some unrelated person may have posted to tech forums and twitter using the same name as the prospective hire.

        There may be unsettling tweets posted by a twitter or facebook account holder with the name of the prospective hire's real name, BUT the poste

        • "The applicant probably have posted on such forums using a handle or assumed name. Many people don't use their real name"

          This is a very good point.

      • by Anrego (830717) *

        For the most part, people arn't hired purely for their technical skill.

        Software development is mostly a team sport. How you fit in with the office culture, how easy you are to work with, how much ego and asshattery you bring to the table are as relevant or even more relevant than your technical chops. This becomes increasingly true as you move up the ladder.

        There's still jobs that require the cliche "guy who spends every waking moment in his basement hacking out killer code" employee, but it's becoming a ra

    • by PNutts (199112) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:17PM (#44085479)

      What do you do do?

      If you're in IT especially and you're invisible you're suspicious. Lots of job applicants. What makes you stand out?

      Work experience, knowledge, the ability to share and communicate it directly, personality, hygene... the list goes on and on. I work with a blogger extrovert. His fascinating blog post with pictures, formatted tables, etc. that details his 14 year journey of using Microsoft mobile devices might be delightful for a hiring manager to read. I hope that hiring manager notices the post was made during work hours. And please no "he was on a break". It's a pattern of behavior. Even when the blog posts relate to the technology he uses at work, it takes him away from being a resource. It's fine if you want to tell the world what daddy did at work today. I don't see why an employer would tolerate it on their time.

      • hygene

        Was that supposed to be "hygiene"? Your local work environment must be really desperate for people if knowing how to use a toothbrush and soap is supposed to be a relevant qualification.

        • by PNutts (199112)

          hygene

          Was that supposed to be "hygiene"?

          Yes. Early Sunday mornings my spelling also stinks.

        • by DrVxD (184537)

          Your local work environment must be really desperate for people if knowing how to use a toothbrush and soap is supposed to be a relevant qualification.

          Look up "necessary, but not sufficient."

    • Personally I try to keep my casual online name(s) and real name separate. And Facebook private. I don't mind a prospective employer viewing my LinkedIn profile and seeing who I am professionally, but who I am in private is my business apart from the official responses given in the interview and LinkedIn etc.

      I don't need my interviewer knowing that I spend a lot of free time on a my little pony fan site. I'm not that stupid.

    • by Jonah Hex (651948)
      You need to be on LinkedIn [linkedin.com] with connections and endorsements and Indeed [indeed.com] for your resume. LinkedIn especially has become a MUST for connecting to prospective employers and showing off your previous work and skill sets. I don't give out my Facebook or Twitter to employers and I make them hard to connect with my business self simply because of my off beat personal interests and art. (see sig line) - HEX
    • by INT_QRK (1043164)
      If you're in computer and network security (aka "cybersecurity," or "Information Assurance."), I would be weary if your online presence revealed too much, and would not be a bit concerned if it were lacking entirely. A prolific and revealing social media presence would indicate to me low awareness and/or judgment regarding vulnerability to social engineering, at the very least...and I'm a hiring manager.
  • by stigmato (843667) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @11:54AM (#44085309)
    If you're a programmer looking for your next gig, having a slew of projects you've developed or worked on show up in Google can definitely help. Having lots of red party cup drunken pictures with your friends on a blog somewhere, however, will definitely hurt you.
  • by Technician (215283) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @11:55AM (#44085321)

    If your technical job requires a TS or above clearance, it is best ot have very little presence. Party life or drug refrences in your posts will work against you in your background investigation for the clearance.

    • by kawabago (551139) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:33PM (#44085593)
      Not a single police force has tried to hire me since I started using medical marijuana. Just try to get a pilot's license! Oddly, if you drink, they'll trust you not to fly drunk but if you use medical marijuana they won't trust you at all.
      • by evilviper (135110) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @01:21PM (#44085931) Journal

        if you drink, they'll trust you not to fly drunk but if you use medical marijuana they won't trust you at all.

        Probably has a lot to do with the fact that marijuana is still a schedule-1 drug, and completely illegal at the federal level.

      • by PNutts (199112) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @01:56PM (#44086195)

        Not a single police force has tried to hire me since I started using medical marijuana. Just try to get a pilot's license! Oddly, if you drink, they'll trust you not to fly drunk but if you use medical marijuana they won't trust you at all.

        1. More people die when you (try to) fly at 18 MPH than driving at 18 MPH
        2. Convenience stores next to long runway-ish looking streets are too much of a temptation
        3. ATC is not interested that a puffy white cloud is watching/following/judging you

    • by mysidia (191772)

      Party life or drug refrences in your posts will work against you in your background investigation for the clearance.

      I was curious about this, but I hadn't heard from anyone with actual knowledge...

      I wonder more: does TS or above clearance require having or not having certain political opinions?

      For example... if you join the EFF or post in opposition to the broadcast flag, 3 strikes, the DMCA, or the NSA's wiretapping program or government secret surveillance programs on a mailing list, or on Twit

  • Damn Extroverts (Score:5, Insightful)

    by danaris (525051) <danaris.mac@com> on Sunday June 23, 2013 @11:58AM (#44085339) Homepage

    Frankly, any company that expects any given hire to have an extensive record of blog posts and tweets is not one I would really want to work for.

    Not just because of the privacy implications, but because, in my view, that's expecting me to have a particular kind of personality: one that feels compelled to share everything, or at least a frequent chunk of what I do and think.

    Unfortunately, this is just another manifestation of extroverts running most organizations and not even truly comprehending what it might be not to be an extrovert. So much of the hiring process and expectations in the workplace are centered around things that give extroverts a charge, but drain introverts' energy badly.

    Just one of my big pet peeves X-P

    Dan Aris

    • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

      Who signs up to social media and internet forums with their real name?

      Apart from you, obviously.

      • by Ash Vince (602485) *

        Who signs up to social media and internet forums with their real name?

        Apart from you, obviously.

        Me as well. My real name is Ash Vincent.
        I guess there are some of us who decided that not being an anonymous coward meant actually having the courage to have anything we post easily associated with our real life identity.

      • by danaris (525051)

        Who signs up to social media and internet forums with their real name?

        Apart from you, obviously.

        Well, first of all, 99% of people who aren't geeks. That is, after all, the point of social media for most people: to interact with other real people through the internet, many of whom they already know from real life, and who would be searching for them by their real name.

        Second of all, how do you know this is my real name, and not just a plausible pseudonym (as opposed to the obvious online handles most people use, like AmiMoJo)? ;-)

        Dan Aris

    • Re:Damn Extroverts (Score:4, Insightful)

      by b4dc0d3r (1268512) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @01:56PM (#44086191)

      You stopped just short of where I was hoping you would go - Narcissism [sciencedaily.com].

      Facebook is a mirror and Twitter is a megaphone, according to a new University of Michigan study exploring how social media reflect and amplify the culture's growing levels of narcissism.

      Facebook offers the chance to seek approval and validation [dailymail.co.uk], as well as feedback to alter your behavior - the link refers to this as "curating" your online presence. If you do curating that steps over into reputation management, you can look like you're trying to hide something instead of show something.

      LinkedIn and similar sites about careers and such are still social media, but they are more about professional networking to increase the chances of you knowing the right people for a job change. Almost goes without saying these sites are not helpful when you are new to a career, unless you know key people, in which case you're already set.

      The specific personality they want may be a narcissistic extrovert, who would do well in banking and finance, or as a CxO. Perhaps they are looking for sociopathic tendencies, because they tend to rise to the top [emeraldinsight.com]. Or maybe they know better.

      It's not just about introversion/extroversion - there is a huge amount of insight that a person will get in how you choose to express yourself, maybe not to the point of individual personality disorders, but just a gut feeling that someone is a little too this or that.

      I have a tendency to detect flaws in logical arguments, or basic failure to reason, and it drives me nutso. I have posted many a tirade here pointing out those flaws, even when I agree with the premise. Sometimes people correct me, and I learn. I post mostly anonymously so I can float some trial balloons from time to time and see what gets shot down. My online presence is finding and pointing out flaws, or arguing the other side so that people can either see their own flawed rationalization or actually strengthen their argument. My job involves finding problems with requirements, design, or architecture, and being able to argue that point, so now that I've considered it for the first time, I see it as a natural extension.

      1. Do not create an unnatural online presence - only do what feels right, which could be nothing at all
      2. Do not create something that feels burdensome to manage, as it will go stale and you will look silly when I interview you
      3. Do look at what other people have done. A lot of it has built up over time, time that you may not have. Nothing you can do about that.
      4. If your employer wants your online passwords, and you don't have them, they may not believe you. You don't want to work for that company, not one bit
      5. To follow from that, if your online presence helps you get a job, did you really want that job? Or would you prefer a harder-to-find employer that fits your style better?
      6. Online presence means people can troll or otherwise make you look bad. Even if you do not allow comments, or use a platform that lends itself to discussion, they can show up in search results with a clear link back to your presence. It's just something to consider when you decide where and now to set up, or not to.
  • by PairOfBlanks (2952901) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:00PM (#44085361)
    I think your social media silence says quite a lot about what kind of person you are. If I were looking for someone to keep the company's secrets, it'd be you.
    • by mysidia (191772)

      Sure... you will be strong against being an APT target; if you aren't broadcasting your role in the company, for chinese hackers to create targeted e-mail campaigns against you.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:02PM (#44085383)

    There are two choices for online presence that makes sense to me:
      - avoid it completely
      or
      - use it only as a self-marketing tool. Only blog/tweet about technical stuff, no politics, current affairs, funny pictures. Only use social networks that bring value to you. I use LinkedIn, but it might be not useful for everyone. Always assume that whatever you put there is public, even if it says "private". Ignore trolls. Praise other projects freely, but be reluctant to post negative opinions. In general, be constructive.

    • by Skewray (896393)
      I went to a job interview recently and one of the interviewers had a copy of my LinkedIn profile instead of my submitted resume. The two are essentially identical, which implies that I didn't tailor my resume to the job.
  • by kawabago (551139) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:02PM (#44085391)
    I have never been asked about imaginary friends in job interviews. Am I missing something?
  • You WILL be Googled. So I'd recommend at least having _some_ online presence. At least LinkedIn, which for technical people is pretty much a CV of what you have been doing over the past few years.

    Not having a Facebook and such is actually a plus in my eyes.

  • by darkwing_bmf (178021) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:03PM (#44085395)

    Honestly, you're better off without an online presence. Unless the company is looking to hire a full time blogger, if they do an internet search at all, it will only be to find out if there's any reason why they shouldn't hire you.

    • Spot on. This stuff is only going to be used for negative vetting. Creating a positive online presence that works for you is going to take a lot of time and careful planning. Make sure everything can be reversed.

  • Should I start now, or is an first-time tweeter/blogger in 2013 worse than someone with no presence at all?

    When you begin blogging / posting is fairly irrelevant, but someone posting when they have nothing to say is definitely worse than having no online presence.

    I'm in a similar situation. I'm in my late 30's, self-employed, and get most of my work (projects and contracts) by networking in the old-fashioned sense - phoning contacts every once in a while, taking people out to lunch, keeping in tough with agents and hiring managers. Lately though, many of the people I maintain relationships with in this way are i

  • No. Nobody cares (Score:5, Insightful)

    by AuMatar (183847) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:08PM (#44085425)

    Nobody's going to even look. All we care about is can you do the job. The only exception is if the job is in marketing, then they may care about your use of social media.

    • An exception is if you have a website where you show some of your projects. It can work as a portfolio.

      But yes, if we are talking about some silly social media profiles or blogs, don't bother writing some dummy content, if you aren't passionate about that kind of media otherwise.

    • by urbanriot (924981)
      Yea, maybe things are different in Silicon Valley when applying to tech giant companies, but 'round these parts up here in Canada, no one cares what you do online. It's assumed that everyone uses Facebook and no one uses Twitter and anything else? No one cares.
  • by QuietLagoon (813062) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:14PM (#44085455)
    As a hiring manager, my focus is whether or not the applicant is able to do well in the position. I've never really concerned myself with the online presence of the applicant. I look at rummaging around in google to check out an applicant as more or less equivalent to hiring an investigator to do a background check. The fact that googling is easier and cheaper than hiring an investigator does not change the motive for doing so.

    .
    An exception would be if the applicant links to his professional online presence in the CV. Then I would use that as I would any other information on the CV. However the presence on the web does not make the information different than having the same information on the CV.

    If I were hiring for a sensitive position where a background check is warranted, then I would do a real background check.

    But if no background check is required, why go poking around in someone's private life.

  • A few tips (Score:5, Interesting)

    by vivaoporto (1064484) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:23PM (#44085517)
    Having just sifted through about 100 CVs to find 5 of 6 potential candidates for a senior programmer opening let me fill you with some tips:

    * First and foremost: do not pad your CV with things you barely know just to qualify. It's one thing if you used both MS SQL Server and MySQL interchangeably in your past employment but if you used exclusively SQL Server for the past 3 jobs and the requirement is "experience with MySQL" do not apply. Including "experience with MySQL" to trigger the keywords will be an indicator of desperation and lack of professionalism

    * About the original question (online presence): it is detrimental unless you are world renowed in your field. Bruce Schneier can point to his online body of work but if yours consists only in presence in Facebook groups, an occasional post on some majordomo list for your pet language or, heavens forbid, a Linkedin account just ommit it. It won't get read and if it does, more likely than not it will show a side of you that would be better hidden.

    * The only valuable online presence is a portfolio. Websites you were part of the development team if you area applying for a web developer position, website for the product or service you helped to create, anything that can prove the quality of your work and your qualifications.

    * Last but not least important: hiring in this field is mostly about word of mouth and references. The first thing many companies do when trying to find someone qualified is to ask the current employees "do you know someone you can vouch for this position?" That is the surest way to get to the shortlist, to have someone to vouch for you by name.


    Last, a little rant. Lucky for us Slashdot got bought by Dice so most of the "infomercials" are in form of people getting and giving advice about employment. Imagine if they had been bought by Sony or Microsoft, it would be a lot like when "jumptheshark.com" got bought by TV Guide only to be dismantled and destroyed.
  • I considered the same thing a few months ago then backed off to rethink what I was trying to accomplish. Mainly because of the fear of screwing up, if you do mess up somehow there's no way back. That's obviously bad for a teenager in high school, it's in another league for a professional trying to advance his career.

    What I realized was that creating a presence isn't necessarily an all-or-nothing affair. It's simply ranking by what could get out of hand. Meaning that on a scale of 1-10, Linkedin is targe

  • by kackle (910159) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:29PM (#44085577)
    I find myself in a similar situation. I am looking for a new job. I have never had time for an online presence, but an heavily foul-mouthed person, who shares my uncommon name, does. Worse, we're about the same age. Without looking like a nut job, how do I put on my resume that I am NOT that guy?
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Add a middle initial to your name on the resume.

      After you've gone through an interview, in your follow-up/thank you email, mention that in a postscript.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by characterZer0 (138196)

      Does the other guy have a website? If so, create your own simple page with your CV, and put a note near the top "Looking for K. Ackle of Loudmouthville, TX? Click here [goatse.cx]."

  • by CrankyFool (680025) on Sunday June 23, 2013 @12:37PM (#44085627)

    I work for a well-known technical company with tons of both open-source contributions and projects we've open-sourced ourselves; we have a techblog, and a presence in many conferences.

    When we look at someone technical, we see if they have a presence online. That doesn't mean Twitter or Facebook -- we really don't care about them unless they're public and inappropriate -- but contributions to OSS, technical blog posts, talks, etc. If it's there, it may make us somewhat more interested.

    That said, I have a few engineers working for me who are similarly Google-invisible, and who have no interest in creating OSS, speaking at conferences, or writing blog posts. That's not a problem. They weren't penalized when we interviewed them, and they're not penalized now.

    I suspect that a company, given the choice between a famous engineer and a non-famous engineer who are equally qualified, may be biased to hire the famous engineer (in my company, we'd just hire both), so I suspect it's an informal edge, not an explicit expectation (most of the time).

    • by julesh (229690)

      It's possibly a little late to be cagey about which well-known tech company you work for, as their identity is clearly visible in your posting history.

      Which perhaps has a bit of a lesson to teach about managing online identities...

  • have a degree does not all ways helps in IT and CS is not IT Not helpdesk / desktop NOT sys admin and so on.

  • As a new engineer, my lack of online presence didn't matter to the company that just hired me. I've always made a point of trying to obfuscate whatever I do, and that hasn't seemed to bother anyone I've ever applied to. I have yet to even get any requests for 'social media sites I use' or anything of that nature.

    If anything they'd check a 'professional networking site' like Linked-In, but that'd be about it.

    So, no it doesn't matter, and stay away from companies where it does. The last thing we need is fo

  • I'm a zOS Systems Programmer and one of my most used resources is the IBM-MAIN mailing list. If you can find one in your field that you can contribute to, your name will become a searchable item.

  • I pay scant attention to resumes, except as a starting point and a way to see if you can string words together in a syntactically correct manner. Not having an online presence won't hurt you necessarily. After the receiving a resume the first thing I'll do is to google you to see if you have:

    • Public code contributions (Github, BitBucket, SourceForge, Launchpad, etc). This is probably the most important bullet on this list. I want to see that you're passionate about software development, and that you're
    • Passion is for people who are to dumb to realize that they're being duped by the money men so how about this? I have a skill that you want or need to make money and I expect to be paid for using that skill to make you money. Are we doing business or not?
  • Then I can assure you do have a presence already.
  • Unless you're applying for a job that requires security clearance (no presence might be good) or a marketing/PR/public-facing position (having a presence is good), it's really only going to be used to screen people out. If a Google search turns up a red flag about someone else with the same name, you might want to create a LinkedIn profile for yourself to SEO your results and easily distinguish yourself from your negative doppleganger. Recruiters are also using LI much more frequently now to look for tale
  • For the last round of hiring my company did, it was strongly suggested that any applicants open a Github account so they can use it to save the code they wrote for our evaluation. Having a Github account can give software-oriented people a chance to publish any projects they've written, akin to a portfolio for graphics design artists.

  • At a previous job, my employer required all employees to have a page on Facebook and we were all supposed to "friend" the company's corporate page. I told them "Fire me if you like, I refuse to join Facebook." Worked there for quite a while, and never got called out on it. I did, however, have to list any on-line communities I was part of in my "Disclosure and Background Check Release" to get my security clearances. They told me I had to stop posting in the sci-fi discussion group I was a member of. While

"From there to here, from here to there, funny things are everywhere." -- Dr. Seuss

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