LinkedIn May Be Cheery, but It's Not Very Honest

Everyone on the career site is doing 'amazing,' 'Guardian' columnist writes—except they're not
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 3, 2023 11:10 AM CDT
LinkedIn's Positivity Is Becoming a Little 'Cringe'
This Sept. 22, 2016, file photo shows a sculpture on a terrace outside the offices of LinkedIn in San Francisco.   (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)

Social media can seem somewhat of a cesspool these days, but not over on LinkedIn, where everyone always seems "fantastic, awesome, and amazing." Except they're not, writes Gene Marks for the Guardian, laying out his beef with the career site he says he needs but also confesses he hates. As a business owner, Marks notes that "I begrudgingly admit that LinkedIn is the only social media platform that makes sense," as it helps him promote his company's products and services. And in some ways, LinkedIn is a refreshing respite from the trolls, political vitriol, and "psychological harm" present on other social media platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and X, formerly known as Twitter. "Everyone—and I mean everyone—is simply crushing it on LinkedIn," Marks writes.

"But does it also have to be so cringe?" he asks, noting the relentlessly upbeat positivity and self-congratulatory announcements that make up nearly every LinkedIn post and comment. He notes that while users on the site are indeed "civil" and "professional," they're also not completely on the up-and-up. "I know the truth about these people," Marks writes. "Because I am one of them. We're not really crushing it. We're stressed. We're worried about money. We're worried about losing our jobs and our customers." Marks is resigned, however, to remaining on LinkedIn, where he'll continue "playing the game." He advises others to simply accept that the jobs site "is not a place to be honest. It's a place to sell your products, your services, and most of all yourself. Admit that and you'll feel better about all those fabulous people who are doing so fabulously there." Just know, though, that "they're not." His piece in full is here. (More LinkedIn stories.)

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