Monday, August 9, 2010

‘Time Out New York’ and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Career Advice

Being the old-fashioned gal that I am, I still subscribe to magazines. Yes, as in the kind made of paper that you can actually hold and touch and page through. I can throw it in my bag and whip it out at any time, for a lengthy read or a quick check on something, and I never have to wait for a gadget to boot up. The photos are all there in all their brilliant, actual size glory for me to enjoy, and after spending most of my days in front of a computer screen, I don’t have to strain my eyes to read the text on yet another digital platform. And best of all, if my magazine gets lost or stolen, I’ve only lost a dollar or two, as compared to a couple hundred if my hypothetical e-reader disappeared.

But this is not a post about the magnificence of paper magazines. This is a post about one particular paper magazine that pissed me off this week.

This past week the latest issue of Time Out New York arrived in my mailbox with a cover touting “The Coolest Jobs (And How To Get Them),” which I ignored at first since in these problematic economic times, you can’t find a magazine or website that isn’t claiming to tell you how to get a great new job. But then I saw that TONY was highlighting some media industry companies that I was actually interested in, like Gawker Media and Tumblr. And like a sucker, I thought they might actually offer useful tips on how to score jobs at these companies.

They offer tantalizing details of how awesome it is to work at these companies straight from current employees’ mouths; “You can directly see the impact you have on the company every day,” “Our archives are fantastic, our library is fantastic, our office environment is beautiful,” etc. They offer photos of their spectacular offices; No cubicles! Accessories closet! Rooftop deck! It’s like career porn for those of us who work in media. And to top it all off, there’s the promise that these companies have job openings, and TONY will tell you how to get them! Here’s how:

Check Tumblr’s website for openings. The only current opening? An unpaid internship.

Check Gawker Media’s various sites for openings. Social networking with the staff may help, too.

Get to know the staff at Elle.

Get a job at MoMA, because (this is a direct quote), “The best way to get a job at MoMA is to have one.”

Holy crap, TONY, thanks for these hot tips! So if I continue to check their websites for openings (like I always do, along with the rest of the city), social network with people who don’t already know me and therefore have no interest in talking to me (like I’ve already tried to do), and happen to stumble into a job (so I can get another job?) I can land a gig at one of these great places? With these crackerjack strategies, I should be able to get my dream job in no time at all. Thanks again, Time Out New York, you are a prince among paper magazines. Keep this up, and you'll have that pesky unemployment problem solved in no time.

(P.S. Call me, Gawker Media, I love you.)

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