Updated: 09.23.2013

This is probably my first post in a year or more that I have published.  I simply had to because I think LinkedIn has turned into two things:  1)  A site just like Facebook only you can see who looks at your profile unless they are spys or something and are too scared to let you know they were looking at your profile and 2) A site just like Facebook where your profile hardly resembles the person you are in real life.

Better You than Me

Let’s look at #2 a different way since those who read #1 know who they are (enough said):  It’s simple really.  Unless you are a recruiter, salesman, independently wealthy and bored, or unemployed and bored then how can you possibly have 2,000 connections that you know well?  Ok, maybe I am just lazy and prefer to actually talk to people I know instead of going to the hard work of trying to ‘connect’ on LinkedIn.

Sure, I know Quantum Software Engineering, doesn’t everyone?

Let’s step to the left a bit and talk about endorsed ‘skills’ on LinkedIn.

I cannot even begin to describe how I feel about it (ok, it’s meaningless) nor how I feel about myself for even endorsing anyone whose skills I don’t know extremely well.

How can someone I hardly know somehow have the knowledge that I know ASP.Net or that I have worked with LINQ or even if I am competent in my field?  They can’t!

Endorsement from someone implies value and clicking on a button has no intrinsic value or rather it is much the same as pulling the lever on a slot machine hoping for a reward.

And, so how can I help you endorse me?

Yesterday I had another person ‘Endorse’ me for skills that I have said that I have (‘said’ via profiles)

What’s wrong with that?  I will tell you:  if the person endorsing you knows your skills first hand then endorsing you becomes “endorse me” since I “endorsed you”.  I mean, don’t you feel obligated to endorse someone who endorsed you?  I guess it would be ok if it was extremely infrequent.

Seriously, why would former classmates from high school endorse me for .NET or ASP.NET skills when I haven’t seen them for such a long time that I don’t remember what they looked like unless I see their photo?


So for whatever it is worth (and you may be spitting at your monitor right now if you are reading this) here is what I recommend:

  1. LinkedIn:  Remove this useless, “I’ll pat your back, you pat mine” feature – it will make people more honest – start looking for ‘handwritten’ recommendations and endorsements.
  2. Members:  Stop accepting endorsements from people who do not know your skills and you know they dont!  It is useless to you the minute I look at your profile, and at who endorsed you and find out they were your babysitter.
  3. Members:  Stop automatically endorsing people who endorse you.
  4. LinkedIn:  Surely with 250 million members a little more work could go into adding more business value and less Facebook style

That’s all, good luck