Social media is all around us and always changing. Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Tumbr are adding new features and new looks. It is getting harder everyday to see the difference between some of these sites. I have profiles on all the sites mentioned above. I rarely go to Instagram, Pinterest, or Tumblr anymore as the other three to meet my needs as follows:
I use Facebook to keep up with family and friends around the world. As a US expat in Singapore, it's nice to be able to see pics and updates from people I care about back in the US. I have a few facebook friends that I also work with, but I consider them friends first and coworkers next.
I use Twitter for news. I follow many US, UK, and Asian news outlets that help me keep up with what is going on in the world. The radio in Singapore is not great and we do not subscribe to local tv. I rarely create an original tweet. Occasionally, I will retweet something, but it doesn't happen often.
I have been a member of LinkedIn since 2006 or 2007. I joined the site in order to build a professional presence that would allow me to develop and maintain a valuable network. All was well for the first four to five years. I only accepted connections with people I had actually met in person or at least had interacted via web or teleconference. I joined groups that were relevant to me: Texas A&M where I earned my engineering degree, Halliburton where I work, and a few others. The updates on the homepage were relevant items related to new connections, changing roles, and other business related topics.
In fact, I used LinkedIn to find my current job.
Recently though, I have noticed LinkedIn having an identity crisis. Here are my proposed "Rules of Engagement" for LinkedIn if you want to be taken seriously.
1) No more pictures cats, or any other animal for that matter, with a quote that is supposed to be clever. That belongs on Facebook
2) No more, "How many likes can I get?" posts. Again, Facebook.
3) Stop endorsing people for things unless you have a valid answer to this question: "So how do you know Joe is good at Sourcing?" If your response does not include a personal experience where you saw Joe do something awesome related to Sourcing, then you can't ethically endorse them.
4) A "selfie" in the driver's seat of your count does not constitute a professional picture.
Thanks for listening to my rant. Please let me know if you can come up with any more guidelines that can keep LinkedIn from becoming Facebook.