The Professional Social Network Debate

Posted Jan 29, 2007

The background behind this blog post is that I sparked a fairly interesting debate on TechCrunch.  Mike Arrington of TechCrunch linked to a story on MarketWatch which contained a quote by Keith Rabois, LinkedIn’s VP of business development.

“Rabois isn’t afraid of Facebook, however. He thinks Facebook users will graduate to Linkedin because they’ll want a ‘professional’ identity and not one that’s affiliated with a school,” wrote Bambi Francisco of MarketWatch. Facebook users graduating into LinkedIn?  Immediately I thought, does Rabois not know that Facebook contain thousands of networks to companies and corporations on top of their schools?  I have so many friends that were associated with universities before that just simply switched to a corporation on Facebook.

After doing a little bit more thinking, I began to realize that LinkedIn is a good way to stay in contact with professionals that you may simply communicate with through various blogs or different social events.  Facebook is tailored more towards a younger crowd.  I have pictures on Facebook where I am standing around a keg at a party and obviously I don’t want professionals to see the lifestyle that I have on Facebook, but I would like them to possibly see my LinkedIn profile.    Nothing wrong with a friendly debate though.

Kudos, TechCrunch readers & MarketWatch.  Oh and FYI, LinkedIn is raising another $13 million in funding this week.