Rage against the machine

According to this article, The New York Times reports that 45 percent of employers questioned in a Harris Poll said they checked social networking sites before making hiring decisions. And 35 percent of employers using Internet research in the screening process decided not to hire a candidate based on what they found there.

Hold on, pump the brakes.

Almost 50 percent of employers creep on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. to check out potential employees and them make 'informed' decisions about potential employees based on their findings?  Without even meeting them first?

I don't know if it's the fact that I didn't get a cup of coffee this morning, or if it is because I'm still sore from my first yoga experience two days ago, but this outraged me.

I have long since adhered the 'Take Me As I Am' philosophy: if you have a problem with the way I choose to spend my time outside of the workplace then I'll pass on the opportunity.  I have far too much to do, see, and learn to waste my time worrying about your opinion.  Yes, this is potentially naive as well as harmful, but I cannot justify trying to hide my true self for the sake of an employer's satisfaction.

Is there a single company that not only understands that people have lives outside of their offices/encourages such things?  Have we become so subservient to our paycheck that we are willing to compromise ourselves?

Sure, there are things I could/should delete off Facebook and Twitter, but doing so would be cheating, at least to me.  To deny the fact that I used to play beer pong and sing karaoke on Thursday nights would be lying.  Why should I erase part of my identity so I can 'fit in' to your idea of an ideal candidate?

Those photos/posts/etc. don't tell you about my tremendous character, my loyalty, my sense of humor, my work ethic, my creative thinking.  You will, however, see me making poor fashion choices and possible horrible hair days.

I work hard.  I live life.  I refuse to change for anyone but myself.

Am I alone in this 'radical' way of thinking?

Is the future creating an employer-friendly Facebook/Twitter while also maintaining a 'real' one?  That sounds like an awful lot of work to me.  How long before those lines become blurred and you no longer remember which identity is truly yours?

I know you're out there, dream employer.  I know you will look passed the short bangs and smudged eyeliner to see my potential.  I can't wait to show you everything I have to offer; I have a feeling you are going to be blown away.