18 thoughts on “things i am thankful for”

  1. foodgirl and other job seekers: Don’t look at Rumor Mill! A lot of the information is wrong (or at least it was in past years), and it seems to make job seekers even more anxious. Best wishes for good jobs and sanity to all on the market!


  2. I checked out my uni, which had some correct information and some incorrect information, with the incorrect posters sounding just as sure of themselves as the correct ones. But I couldn’t help but wonder what the little flames? on the folders mean.

    Like Jeremy, I’m glad I can ignore this. Does anyone think that it would help to have people from the schools post actual updated information? Would schools have any incentive to post truthful information about search status? At least at my uni, the truth is usually relatively public because there are so many people involved.


  3. I have found reading those rumor mills over the last few years way more stressful than being on the market myself. I’m with cperchesk – the process is hard enough, don’t make it worse by following that site.


  4. I checked out my uni, which had some correct information and some incorrect information

    I just did the same, and the amount of bad — by which I mean, wholly false — information was quite remarkable.


  5. Yeah, I don’t want to be explicit in details but there are three assertions contained in the thread about my university’s search, and two of them are inaccurate and the third I’m not sure about.


  6. I think I’ve been pretty decent at telling the good from the bad information. The times it’s most useful are when the jobs are posted, as a clearinghouse of listings, and now, when schools are moving but not contacting. So I see it as a necessary evil that I do my best not to internalize. Friends I’ve talked with say the same.

    Also, one positive is that at least the sociology board is more polite and upbeat than other disciplines, where there’s been outright vitriol the last few years.


  7. why, jeremy, why did you put the link there?!?

    –kidding. i followed it the first year i was (quarter-ass) on the market, and ignored it the second year when i was fully on the market — wisest procrastination i’ve ever skipped!


  8. The stuff about my uni has also been mostly very wrong. Like someone stating that s/he had an interview with us when we did not even have a long list. I have looked at the rumor mill for years now (why? I don’t know). It seems worse this year. Or I am just mis-remembering?


  9. Based on my one visit to the rumor mill a few weeks ago, I agree with scorrell that the rumor mill site is worse than I’ve ever seen it. Worse = more misinformation and more bad behavior. I’m assuming that both are the outcome of students feeling cranky with the lousy job market.


  10. I think there was a threat on scatterplot in a past year about how terrible that year’s rumor mill was, too.

    I agree that the rumor mill/wiki is really not helpful (which is unfortunate). I don’t know about this year, but when I was on the market I certainly saw incorrect or misleading information about positions that I did have firsthand knowledge of.

    A really nasty aspect of the rumor mill when I was on the market is there was actually trash talking about specific people on the market. Even not using their actual names, it was pretty obvious who the target was. Really not cool.

    When I was teaching about deindividuation in my undergrad social psych class this year, I made a comment along the lines of “and that’s why the internet can be such a horrible place.” I meant it as a joke, but my students seemed to agree with this quite strongly.


    1. If departments had the decency to inform candidates about the status of searches, then there wouldn’t be much need for the (clearly flawed) rumor mill.


  11. Nicemarmot: Good point, but there’s a simple solution: non-anonymous posting. That will provide information, but create a hue disincentive for rude comments. It works pretty well of leiter reports (a philosophy blog that also discusses employment).


  12. From a cursory glance at leiter reports, its purpose appears to be more like scatterplot than the rumormill blog. Perhaps it’s not the season for the philosophy job market, but I didn’t see any discussion about employment. In any case, I think non-anonymous posting (assuming it could be enforced, which is doubtful) would pretty much kill the blog since majority of the posts concern matters that at least some parties want kept private.

    What’s interesting about the blog this year is that the information appears to be less accurate and the posts more nasty. I think that is due, at least in part, to the shift in the format. When I was on the market, the blog was essentially one or two long threads (800-1,000 posts), with way more dialogue than drive-by. I think that made it more supportive and informative. In any case, if departments want to kill the blog, then releasing more information in a more timely manner is probably the only solution.


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