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Drowning In Information

(April 27, 2006) An avalanche of interesting information is pouring in from blogs about Recruiting. Meanwhile, the labor market is rapidly globalizing. A healthy world economy is raising all boats. Labor markets are tightening around the world. New tools are emerging with fantastic claims.

Recruiting is getting harder. And, the crap ratios are increasing. Wading through the increasing torrent of near-information is becoming a real challenge.

Blogging, Social Network Recruiting and Referral Systems all point to new ways of thinking and being in our industry and outside of it.

At the end of this article is a list of some (96) of the most interesting blogs we follow. (Do let us know if you feel left out or if we missed you). If you gave each one five minutes a day, you would be reading them all week. RSS Feeds (like ours) can give you some relief and efficiency in gobbling up the material. But, there's got to be a limit..

In general, this is a problem with new technologies. Somewhere on the adoption/absorption curve, things get overwhelming just before they get clear. Too much of a good thing usually results in innovations that tame the beast. The hard part is waiting for them to arrive.

Over at Recruiting.com, awareness of the noise factor is so intense that they are discussing ways to "Game the System". In short, a group of bloggers think that by banding together, they can make the search engines favor the blogs in their collective. It's a remarkable idea that will probably work. Sadly, it brings an end to one of the foundational ideas of blogging....that an isolated blogger can create an audience without resorting to the same book of tricks always used to create an audience.

Heather Leigh, our colleague at Microsoft weighs in with a smart perspective:

...Shouldn't the approach be: "here's a link to my blog, which I thought you might be interested in" (and let the reader decide if they want to link) versus "if you link to my blog, I'll link to yours".

The thing is, blogs are all about credibility. If I read a blog and they link to a bunch of blogs that don't have good content, I think "what the?". The links might get people there in the first place but without good content, they won't come back. So what is the point other than tricking the search engines.

Why would you want a blog without good content linking to you anyway? The key is to write good content that gets the attention of influential bloggers (not bloggers hurting for traffic) that find your writing interesting enough to share with their readers.

The Blogging collective (or link swap) aims to create readership by networking rather than by content delivery. While that's a little harsh, the game is agreed upon cross-promotion (or in common parlance, a cartel). The argument put forth by the folks at Recruiting.com is that a cartel will ensure quality of the content. That's roughly the "What's good for GM is good for the country mindset."

It's wonderfully American to see folks using their entrepreneurial skills to beat the existing system. Once it becomes clear that your access to blogged information is a function of who is smart enough to beat the search engines, blogs will be clearly seen as just another information source. Ultimately, the approach stifles growth in favor of the existing players.

Here's the list of blogs.

 John Sumser . - .  Permalink . - . Today's Bugler

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