LinkedIn’s Game-Changing New Feature Is Kind Of Terrifying

 "Sorry, I can't go get drinks. Gotta stay in tonight and work on my LinkedIn videos."

"Sorry, I can't go get drinks. Gotta stay in tonight and work on my LinkedIn videos."

A new video feature seeks to introduce more 'emotion' to users' LinkedIn presence. But is it shifting an advantage to those who *love* being camera-ready all the time?

As if putting together a cover letter, staying on top of your social media accounts, creating a personal website, and keeping your LinkedIn profile tuned isn’t enough to juggle for today’s job seekers, the career-networking giant has officially incorporated a new feature that is both predictable and a little stressful: Native video.

It was inevitable: The race for every news media and social media platform to transition quickly to video formats has been underway for years now, and users have quickly become accustomed to creating personal videos via Insta Stories and Snapchat. According to a 2016 Cisco study, more than 80 percent of all consumer internet traffic will be driven by video.

But will this relatively recent habit of constantly documenting our personal lives transition oddly—and excessively—to a professional networking platform? 

For the initial rollout, the video function on the LinkedIn app is being introduced to select “frequent contributors” (if you see a little video camera icon in the upper right hand of your app, right next to the camera icon, you’re one of ‘em). And based on the announcement email, it’s initially being touted as a tool for influencer/coach-types on the platform: 

“Some stories are better shown than told. Video allows you to evoke emotion, transport viewers, teach something or share some incredible piece of insight when words and images alone aren’t enough. We can’t wait to see how you use this new way to tell your stories on LinkedIn.”

There’s an option to record video directly within the app as well as upload video that you’ve created previously. But the move ultimately opens some floodgates.

The expectation that every user will eventually implement an “about me” type video as part of their profile doesn’t seem far off, which yet again changes the role of the cover letter and resume.

And just as Instagram influencers have adopted increasingly sophisticated and elaborate setups for capturing photos that are significantly higher quality than what the average user is able to achieve on his or her smartphone, logic would follow that the expectation to create high-quality (read: lighting, editing, etc.) videos on LinkedIn isn’t far behind.

In other words: The era of nonstop documentation of oneself as a means of self-promotion has already dominated the way we present our personal lives. But it’s quickly creeping into the professional sphere, whether we like it or not. Are you camera ready?

Words: Deena Drewis
Photo: Daria Kobayashi Ritch/GIPHY