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Alastair Cartwright

Hi John,

Great post, this is something that has been niggling me for quite sometime.

If you want to use a Web 2.0 site as part of your recruitment strategy, at the very least you should apply the principles of Web 2.0, namely:

1. Participation

2. Collaboration

3. Easy sharing and exchange of information

The i-jobsforreal project observes not one of these principles.

It will be interesting to see if any results from the campaign are made public.


On the face of it I completely agree but am always prepared to change my mind if it defies logic and the results are good. However with this type of event then surely the only result that counts is number of quality hires. If the whole thing is based round virtual interviews there should be no excuses about measuring this! Unfortunately I would suggest the only results we will see will talk about numbers of visitors and size of press coverage. You can't use "brand awareness" as an argument for success unless there is strong evidence that the target audience thinks virtual worlds are good and looking for jobs in them is better. I would challenge anyone to come up with that kind of evidence at this moment in time. I fear the only brand awareness this will generate is for the companies running it (TMP, The Guardian and Brandrepublic). PR funded by your own clients? I'm sure they'll be delighted..........

David Coombs

I am involved in this project so am happy to discuss what we are doing with anyone in a professional manner.

For me this post reflects a lot of the arrogance and ignorance that exists within this particular blogging community. I must say I find the approach quite disappointing from a group of individuals that all claim to be experts in this field. I do also find it entertaining that throughout all of the plagiarism and attempts to show off it actually boils down to one of the most basic of all human traits. If I don't understand it I will attack it!

I read this particular post with a smile on my face because if anything it really highlighted that the person writing has in fact had no understanding of the medium he claims to understand so well. Even down to the basics of knowing the difference between a virtual event and a virtual world event this post is riddled with ignorance in an effort to sound intellectual.

It was the same in Graeme's article that I read on RI5. You both refer to the behavioural habits, audience size, community, and reasons for being in Second Life. What do these have to do with this project? The fact that you both talk about it means that you really don't understand how we are using the medium for this project.

There are many different ways to use Virtual Worlds with many different objectives. Some may focus on the active community within the world and some may not. Some may concentrate on leveraging the technology platform of virtual worlds and some may not.

This is what I find most interesting. The assumption that becuase you can't figure it out then it must wrong.

Alastair, why on earth are you talking about the principles of Web 2.0 in relation to this project? This again shows a lack of understanding.

I have respect for all of the people who post on this blog but if you are going to make points at least make them relevent, accurate, and above all, well informed.

John Whitehurst

interesting points dave ... it is very personal attack on me so i am sorry if my post caused offence. i did try and say that i could be wrong in the post.

i do have a lack of understanding ... but then no person can claim to be an expert in digital media ... from a position of experience, what everyone on this blog has done for the industry and the basic right to question things. i do not see how we are acting in the way you claim.

when you look at the ri5 article and the post - reading, using research and discussing is not to try and look clever. i think this quote sums it up better than i can

" Supposing you've got an acute appendicitis. You've got to be operated on tonight. Would you like to have a surgeon who's read some books of anatomy and knows how to do that operation - or would you prefer to have a surgeon who refused to read all books about anatomy and relied on his own instinct? Why should a manufacturer bet his money - perhaps the future of his company - on your instinct?" David Ogilvy

to say that i don't understand - is basically rude and not correct. my main point was that it is not a careers fair - it is an online interview using second life.

the best performing campaigns work with the structure and nature of the medium to meet client objectives - from looking at the site and how you are using the medium it does not reflect the nature of second life.

from a structure perspective you have got around this by advertising externally - but the fact you are advertising again misses the point of the medium. why use second life, other than doing it for the PR? you could interview in far more effective ways.

what are your objectives? i am still not sure what they are? is it to be innovative? if so then that is good and you know i like exploring new mediums - probably more than most people.

if it is for innovation, then to make it work it still needs to work with the fundamentals of planning. the structure and nature of the medium need to meet client objectives + the best performing advertising works with the structure and nature of the medium.

Al made a point about his views on web 2.0 ... why have a go at his thoughts? they are valid - a closed environment does not fit with the principle of the medium. also they are his thoughts on the subject - why rubish them in such a way?

can we not have a point of view? and that is a view based on ... a lack of experience ... a lack of knowledge ... a lack of understanding ... a lack of ability ... ?

i am going to quote ogilvy again ... sorry but this sums up how i have read your post

'I can't stand callow amateurs who aren't sufficiently interested in the craft of advertising to assume the posture of students.' david ogilvy

to quote you

' I am involved in this project so am happy to discuss what we are doing with anyone in a professional manner.

For me this post reflects a lot of the arrogance and ignorance that exists within this particular blogging community. I must say I find the approach quite disappointing from a group of individuals that all claim to be experts in this field. I do also find it entertaining that throughout all of the plagiarism and attempts to show off it actually boils down to one of the most basic of all human traits. If I don't understand it I will attack it!'

the concepts i talk about and refference are based on research, a understanding of how people use technology and it is to discuss the idea rather than being rude.

edward do bono ... 'says that a discussion should be a genuine attempt to explore a subject rather than a battle of egos.'

it is very easy to label a person as ignorant or malevolent because they dont agree with you. maybe i have a different perception, values, needs and experience - maybe you are just not seeing where i am coming from. i did not intend to offend or be right ... i admit that i am not always right and often don't get things.

maybe i don't get your aproach to the idea; but also maybe you missed my point or i did not make it clear enough.

i think the campaign does not fit within the medium.

so it is quite possible that the only way to make it work is to use your aproach? i do not know.

but i do have a strong feeling that it does not fit into how people use the medium. and no matter how much i want to use a medium - if the concept does not fit with the way a medium is used it feels wrong.

btw. i saw the results from the US campaign ... so my point is not from an ignorant perspective.

also i have worked on comms plans for KPMG, RBS and YELL - so i might be a little out of date but i do have a level of understanding of the client.

also i have worked in events, press, online media, research, web development, media planning and now i am working on consultancy projects for clients.

i would not say i know everything; in fact i would not regard myself as an expert. but i would stand up to anyone who says that i do not understand - maybe, just maybe i am looking at this from a different perspective.

and i welcome a discussion in a professional manner + some results if you can share them. because if it does not work (my feelings on the project are that it has some issues) it is not a bad thing. we learn from it and we move on.

my point is that i think that with a little more thought and maybe even time ... you can use this form of interaction to really improve the recruitment process.

i actually feel that a sensory medium like second life will improve the recruitment process ... and i have been very vocal about it.

i am looking forward to seeing the results ... right or wrong they will be interesting.

David Coombs

John, this is not a personal attack on you, rather an attack on the approach you have taken.

If you do make a direct attack at something don't be suprised if someone points out that you may not have considered all angles.

To quote you John:


and then go on to say

'it is very easy to label a person as ignorant or malevolent because they dont agree with you. maybe i have a different perception, values, needs and experience - maybe you are just not seeing where i am coming from.'

Can you not see your own hypocricy here?

As I have tried to point out and as you have admitted yourself, you don't know the objectives of this project so therefore how are you qualified to rubbish it?

I am not trying to insult you John and certainly don't want to come across as rude but it is a fact that you don't understand this event. It is far more than interviews in a virtual world environment (although that does take place as well).

This also has nothing to do with the active community in Second Life or the reasons they are there. We are not looking at this as an advertising channel or anything connetcted to it. Is it possible that we could simply be using the technology?

I was not rubbishing Graeme's views in any way, that is not how I am. I was responding to a specific article about a specific issue. The information he worte down is correct, it is simply misplaced here John despite what you say.

Having read your response and the new post you wrote though it would seem that maybe you aren't so keen practice what you preach.

If you are going to launch direct attacks you must be prepared to be challenged back without taking it personally. Your original post left no option for the fact that maybe there was another point of view it was essentially 'this is wrong'. That is incredibly arrogant John whichever way you look at it and your responses to my comments back that up.

There are always other points of view, values, and objectives and maybe that should be considered before writing in the fashion you have.

Had the article been an open discussion around this (which I believe this blog is about) then that would have been fantastic. Unfortunately it wasn't, it was essentially a one sided and closed statement that you were right and that's the end of it. I was simply pointing out that maybe there is another side to it.

No offence was ever intended John so I hope you haven't taken it that way, I am simply responding in the manner in which the original post was made.

Alastair Cartwright

Enhance Media has been attacked on here on a number of occasions, so it was probably wrong of me to post criticisng others.

Best of luck with it, you should be applauded for your innovation.


Dave I'm sorry but I think you've really undermined any point you were trying to make by the language / tone you've used. The thing I like about this blog is that people have strong opinions and the people who disagree with them respond. However assertively they respond though everyone has thus far been polite professional and had an understanding of how blogging works. Regardless of my thoughts on the content of this debate to read phrases such as "this post reflects a lot of the arrogance and ignorance that exists within this particular blogging community" really annoys me. This blog has six authors, many other regular contributors via the commments and several hundred readers. To lambast everyone on the basis of one post and a couple of comments is just bizarre. I'm genuinely sorry if discussing your project in an open forum has offended you but resorting to generalisations and name calling is a not particularly constructive way to respond

John Whitehurst

Hey Dave ... there was no offence taken or meant. in my post and reply I have tried to fully explain my thoughts - so you can respond to them.

to say i can not have relevant opinion or comment - because i dont know your objectives is odd. i can look at the site and your communications

i do see you you are using the medium and my point of difference is on the fact it is not part of the active community on second life. something about it bothers me and i wanted to make that feeling public within the community.

i would also say that i can only base my opinion of how you will be using the medium based on how it is described on your site. the only thing you site says people can do is book at interview - if it is more than this great (but it might be an idea to tell people signing up for the event).

my tone can be harsh ... but at no point would i not accept or respect your response.

i am looking forward to seeing how well the event works.

David Coombs

Matt, I didn't mean to cause offence and I was a bit harsh in my comments about the bloggers on here. Although I don't recall calling anyone names? If you read my original post I start by saying I am happy to discuss this in a professional manner, but that can only happen if I am treated with the same respect.

Lets not forget some previous articles have been a lot more personal than this one. But maybe that is ok because they are authors?

If I get passionate about something then I will react as I have seen all of your authors do in the past. Everyone must be prepared to take what they dish out.

Again I didn't mean to cause offence to the authors on here and if I did then I apologise. This article was not an open discussion it was a statement that something someone else was doing was wrong. No debate, no nothing, just wrong.

I'm leaving this one now.

thomas delorme

lol ...

i dont care whose wrong or right and i've had those discussions in France in june when we did "something in SL".

The thing is i'm fully biaised because i'm a TMP person.

John is right saying the job fair term is untrue, this is not what we usually call a "jobfair" ... other than that well ...

strongly disagree on "the only result that counts is number of quality hires"
when a company does a full page in a major newspaper, they expect more than that, i think it's just the same here, it's recruitment communication, if "the only result that counts is number of quality hires" you go to a recruitment agency, they hunt the guy, charge a fee and you're done (or so i think), there's some branding involved.

what i can say (from what i've seen / done) is that we had the companies, the applicants (300 came to our "event") AND the press (the guy that says PR is not part of the equation and that's it's "pure recruitment" is probably wrong.

our clients hired people, some came to us and said "we met applicants we would never have met" (some applicants said they would never have answered a jobposting from the company that hired them).

Some of our clients had interviews with people from china or the US, they could have done this by phone but the coolness factor exists

i could go on (one of our client did it "blind" : they did the itw without knowing who the guy was) and say it's great and it's the future of recruitment but it's not.

It's just one option companies have, the persons we did it with seemed to love it and want to do it again so ...

i thought i'd keep it short :)

more than happy to chat about it, for real


Dave don't worry I not offended and I'm also happy for people to challenge any of my view points and a lot of people do. What annoyed me was taring the whole of our blog community (and by community I mean authors, readers and other contributors)with the collection brush of arrogance, ignorance, plagarism and showing off which didn't really help you get your point across.

Back to the point in hand, Thomas thank you for your post and useful insight. I spoke about quality hire as a metric as my understanding of the event is that it isn't to do with advertising but interviewing but I'm only going off the info I've seen.

Which brings me onto my final point really. I didn't write the original post so I not sure what John wanted to get out of it but for me I'd love to get a broader understanding of the event. As a "UK first" and as something that is being advertised on the front page of the Guardian there is obviously going to be a lot of discussion and speculation about what is going on. This always happened in the past but now we have blogs etc it is all getting done in public. Maybe the lesson we all need to learn from today's flurry of posts is that in future these kind of launches perhaps need to have (obviously respecting competitor issues) more up front info with them. People will always debate and speculate maybe it would pay to inform that debate at an earlier stage?


Just found this on Stephen's blog


John Whitehurst

Hi Thomas,

Thanks for your response ... it is interesting to see the clients liked it and hired people.

It would be interesting to hear more on this as it develops.


ps. Matt I just wanted a good old rant and I am glad that (even thought it has been personal at times) we have explored the issue in depth.

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