Given the ridiculous fees and obstacles created by LinkedIn over the past 3 years; Would an alternative site that was designed to be more open (with recruiting in mind) be something that the larger talent acquisition community would support? I would love to hear what other think on this topic.


Cheers, Jason

aka Recruiter-At-Large

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Here is the real question - Let's say there is ... and you were lucky enough to build it to 100 million or more users ...  Would you want to monetize it?  Lets say you did ... What problems do you think you would incur?  LinkedIn is at the IPO phase not sure the founders of LinkedIn were thinking about Recruiters when they first launched the site.

Exactly. And given that we (recruiters) are 80%+ of their revenue stream don't you think that they might want to make it a bit more cost and user friendly to us? Or maybe they suffer from the same pride that had a few years ago? 


I think that as a profession we owe it to ourselves to explore alternatives and not simply give into a standard that we had little influence in shaping. 

Maybe the fact that LI isn't friendly towards recruiters is why people flock there and put up profiles..they can see and be seen, with minimum pestering. If spamming them with job ads was any easier, they would go elsewhere.
You make a good point Thomas ...
Jason ... Here is another point if this alternative  portal was built by recruiters would it achieve the same adoption rate like LinkedIn - as compared to a portal built by folks outside the industry - The latter does not come across as self-serving and users love that...

Yes Paul! great point: "the latter does not come across as self-serving and users love that"

this is key to's about the community, not those who seek to profit from it.

Not that we can't profit from a community, but we have to bring value to it first.


As I have said many times linkedin is just one tool. It is not the only tool

LinkedIn has been accepted for some time now by its general users as a de facto form of recruiting and reference checking forum. Yes it's also used for networking, but a a very small percentage (under 10%) of users actually close themselves off from job related contact. Interesting.


In 2006 I was asked by LinkedIn to participate in a study (not survey) that was designed to "discover" ways to generate revenue. It was fairly clear to most of us in the study that LinkedIn had already settled on network access for recruiters as the centerpiece of their revenue efforts. Knowing this fact makes the claim that LinkedIn is not just as self-serving as a site built by talent experts seem somewhat contradictory.


One final thought. We the community are what makes LinkedIn a success. Almost every service that we now pay for was at one time free. Why do we tolerate it on this social network when we never would on another? Ask yourself this; If Facebook started charging you to re-connect with old friends, or for storing your photos, would you pay? I seriously doubt it.  


It's time for a new and better option.

Hi Jason,  you make some good points ... Facebook would have failed if it did not prove itself first -Hotmail was worth 400 million to Microsoft only after it gained acceptance and I think the founder could have received more. It's still free ...  Microsoft gained registered users millions ....  Any Online Entrepreneur who does not first build acceptance then implement revenue stream will generally fail and sometimes "free" has more value that can't be measured with today's metrics of How many active registered users do you have ...  


I think with so many users plugged into LinkedIn - they are in a dictatorial mode they need to continually improve the service to maintain relevance ...   It could be argued like with the gas we need to drive to and from work - we may not have a choice...   hmmmm ... then again ... 

Having established ourselves in a neighborhood, made connections, learned the navigation of the streets, figured out how to make it profitable at a very low cost who wants to pick up and move?

If you were going to build a house would you expect somebody to give you all the tools and materials for free, why should we expect anyone to give us the tools and inventory to build a business for free?

If we were given the tools and inventory for free for several years why should it be such an insult when the guy who provided tools and inventory for free for years says, "hey it's my turn for an opportunity to make a buck too". You can keep making money, I'll just ask you to pay a cover charge now that I can attract a top band and a great crowd".

If you can do what Facebook did to Myspace or what Google did to other search engines that existed, first mover advantage is usually tough to beat.


Having said that, I understand they do have to make money and in social media its not that easy to monetize. They have made changes that are slowly encroaching on groups and other services.


Sure, there needs to be alternatives in the space.

Hello Rayanne... LinkedIn never started out saying we are gonna build a venue for Job seekers  this is the reason they grew to 85 million registered users so quickly ... Name a Job board that grew that fast in the space of 4 years.


Its only in the last 2- 3 years that LinkedIn recognized a " Best Use" by the Employment Market hence the morph to adopt to this best use ...      This was supposed to be a site where Professionals worked with their "Trusted Network" ....  This is why Users Trusted the Site putting on their" Profiles" again not resumes....

But like in a blog I wrote back in 2010 what a site initially start out as is not usually what its users would use it for.  Case in point:  Facebook sitting on a server  back in Harvard dorm room  " Picture Swapping and rating girls " is not what it is today with a crazy  valuation of $90 billion ....  The Nature of the online world ...

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