How reliable are online profiles?

When it comes to the reliability of information on the web one must take into consideration the source of information. However, ones purpose for seeking information may also determine which sources are sought. For example if I am looking for a personal experience, then I would look for blogs or other personal websites. On the other hand if I am looking for a scholarly source I would look to research that has been published in peer reviewed journals. If I need information on information related to public matters I would go to government websites for this information. According to my graduate program professors, government websites are renowned for being legit and so are peer reviewed journals. However, when it comes to personal websites and sites that are for propaganda, the information on those sites may be purely for the benefit of the owner of the site. We have all seen sites such as Facebook that tend to have profiles and pictures that may not always be accurate.

In a corporate setting, although people may embellished their resumes on the web and hard copy, I think that with sites such as LinkedIn, people would be less inclined to embellish because they share that page with others who may have attended the same school or place of work. As a result, if you are saying you graduated college or graduate school and your classmates are aware that you did not, the chance of you getting caught in a lie are much higher in an online setting.

Using Linked in seems like a good idea when you are looking to hire people. After all, Linked in has over 100 million users that are potentially employable. But should you solely rely on the recommendations that appear on LinkedIn? It seems that you can hide recommendations that you do not like. When CEO’s lie about their qualifications on paper how easy would it to build some good recommendations in LinkedIn?  Recommendations in Linked in seems reciprocal, do these types of recommendations devalue the testimonial?

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