A Rheingold Application

linked in

 

LinkedIn.com

 The LinkedIn article by Maggiani and Marshall outlines a few ways to use the site to your benefit.  With over 300,000,000 profiles, it makes sense to utilize it for expanding your network or looking for new employment opportunities.  Although LinkedIn was associated with white collar users in its infancy, it is now being used by people from all economic and social classes.  A class on how to effectively use LinkedIn is even taught in Minnesota Workforce Centers around the state.  After thinking about the readings this semester, it struck me that LinkedIn may be a perfect place to put my new found Rheingold knowledge to use.

An article by Cheryl Connors in Forbes outlines a few interesting statistics LinkedIn has experienced in the last year:

1-41% of people now report 500+ connections, up from 30%in 2013

2-58% of people spend more than two hours a week on the site, up 10% from 2013

3-16% of people are in the maximum number or groups allowed (50)

4-Company page usage jumped from 24% to 57%

Full article: http://www.forbes.com/sites/cherylsnappconner/2014/05/04/new-research-2014-linkedin-user-trends-and-10-top-surprises/

Having just finished Rhenigold, I questioned how to use the knowledge that he presented.  Before I set out to topple a dictatorship, perhaps I should start with LinkedIn.  Although I have a LinkedIn profile, I only view it once every two weeks, don’t post updates, and am generally a lurker when my Facebook News Feed is stagnant.  When reading this article, there are definitely parallels from what Maggiani and Marshall have discussed and the concepts that Rheingold discussed.

Maggiani and Marshall: Connect with all STC colleagues and people you work with

Rheingold: Building a network

MM: Utilize 1st connections to connect with their 2nd and 3rd connections

R: Utilizing bridges to connect to other networks

MM: Updating your status often

R: Putting in the effort

MM: Ed helped steer connections away from a problem company

R: Adding value

Reading through the blogs, it seems most people would like to utilize the knowledge we have learned from Rheingold and some of us have even posed the question of where to start.  More than half the people I know would classify themselves as unemployed or underemployed.  Given that, it would seem that utilizing Rheingold’s concepts, while using LinkedIn, would be time well spent to experience some real world benefits.  It seems like a better place to start than over-throwing a government.

Posted on October 30, 2014, in Social Media and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Profpignetti,

    Thank you, there is a lot of good info in that link. Do you think that LinkedIn would be an appropriate place to practice some of the concepts outlined by Rheingold? Or do you think that something less public and less traceable back to you (the user), such as a community forum, would be better place to start? I am sure you have had exposure to this and I am curious to hear your input.

    • Like Howard suggests, it will depend on who and where your networks are AND if you want to combine them or keep them separate.

      If you’re looking for a professional space to practice HR’s concepts, I think LinkedIn would be the place. Since you mention visiting it only when your Facebook feed is stagnant, it seems FB is your place for socializing with people you’ve known for awhile and where you primarily share “less professional” info with. Therefore, LinkedIn could be the place where you could deliberately make a name for yourself, e.g. make connections, share resources, endorse people’s skills, and so on.

      I actually have been better at using Twitter for those purposes because I didn’t join LinkedIn until after I was hired at UW-Stout and knew I wasn’t going to use the site to job hunt. Recently, I’ve noticed my tweets are more personal and pop culture-y rather than academic, but that might be the glow of tenure. 🙂 FYI I did reach out to Howard via Twitter because I thought he’d love how his book was rocking the ENGL 745 world!

      For more info on how LinkedIn has been used for a Stout graduate program, see a MSTPC student’s field project: http://www2.uwstout.edu/content/lib/thesis/2014/2014mittlestadtj.pdf. That group was relatively small and focused on one subject, which may be why they were engaged in the topic, so perhaps you might start searching LinkedIn for groups to join related to the mortgage industry?

      Hope this helps!

  2. Hi Howard here! I’m big on practicing the cultivation, tuning, feeding, and harvesting of personal learning networks, both for practicing a personally useful skill and for improving the quality of the commons. However, I’m not a LinkedIn user! I joined when it first started, and found that I was fielding many requests for people to connect with me and for me to connect them to others, but I didn’t make use of it myself. So I stopped using it. And I was unable to figure out how to delete my account (yes, I’m a noob, too — and maybe LinkedIn didn’t make it easy). Don’t forget that you can roll your own networks — comment on blogs and follow them via RSS, blog yourself and engage with commenters, make Twitter lists, etc.

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