To be honest, I don’t want to work for an employer that checks Facebook first.

Article / 03 September 2020

I know humanity is stuck in this “replace religion with technology worship” phase that we may never move forward from, but I don’t like the trend of employers checking social media and online presence of applicants before hiring.

Whether on social media or my blog, I’m expressing myself and my opinions are my own. My beliefs and how I spend my free time away from the job are mine and up to me. These things should not affect my hirability.

The excuse is, that the business wants to protect it’s reputation and in these ever prevalent web connected times, businesses can’t afford to be associated with someone that might create a scandal.

I call bullshit on that.

Not that there can be a potential scandal based on who you are associated with, but that the value of that risk and the preservation of your businesses reputation is more valuable than my right to exist publicly as a human being with my own individual set of thoughts and feelings. Sorry, potential scandal is a risk of doing business and I shouldn’t have to worry that some petty issue makes me a less attractive candidate.

I don’t care who you are or what you business is, I shouldn’t have to censor myself in regards to what I say about important issues or add explanations to defend myself. 

I shouldn’t have to worry that if I write about my anxiety, that a potential client or employer will be apprehensive to hire me because I might be crazy.

The surface excuse is always innocuous or exagerrated: “We just wanna get a feel for your personality” or “we just wanna make sure you’re not a serial killer, ha ha”, but there is way, WAAAAY, too much potential for abuse and misuse. Apply somewhere that a hiring manager has opposing political views? You don’t get called. Have opposing viewpoints on legalizing marijuana? Resume in the trash. Hated the newest movie that helped them through an emotional time in their lives? You get the picture.

And those were trivial, yet feasibly realistic examples. What about the hot-button issues of society, such as race, religion, gender, identity & lifestyle, etc.?

I believe in freedom of speech. I believe that every person deserves dignity, justice and respect. I believe that everyone deserves these things regardless of race, religion, color, gender, sexual preference, gender identity or anything else. Of course there are always going to be extreme aberrations that require a legal system to solve crimes or issues, but just bringing up “well what if this person did this...” does not negate the fact that we still need to have respect and equality for others in order to thrive as a society. It’s okay to be skeptical, but why don’t we just try it and see if respect and dignity for our fellow man doesn’t reduce that number of extreme exception that happen?

If there is any employer that is offended by those personal beliefs, I wouldn’t want to work for them anyway.

Btw, I did some art today:

Thanks for reading,

Mike Gagnon