The Unedited
Free space for free expression in English & Italian
(Un)Edited by Carlo Pelanda
Managed by F.Brunelli e L.Borgiani

05 TH OF DECEMBER 2009

Although image manipulation, with the help of an open source tool easily available from the web, as well as the design of a virtual professional profile resulted to be quite trivial, harder was to create a network of presumed colleagues whose identities were linked to a living human being in the physical world. Actually, the Indian avatar the engineer created did correspond to his bones and flesh. To his brain as well, since it could have turned out to be imprudent to boast skills not really possessed. A concept many entrepreneurs of virtual facilities should have been aware of, since they never pose on too inquisitorial positions.

The engineer had to collect a large database of e-mail addresses, of which a professional spammer could have proved envy, before obtaining some valuable reply. The first responses argued on the lack of specific skills, that could indeed reflect the nature of the ICT training on the job. That wasn't so unusual listening to technicians expressing the very same worship and fear towards Fortune usually attributed to sailors. You could find by shear dumb luck a job that could have provided you an invaluable experience, as well be condemned to be employed on low profile tasks for the whole of your career. The engineer didn't thrust the Fortune at all, he didn't like to abandon himself to the favor of a woman, either a Lady or a Goddess. The Greek fishing industry, and the economy of the whole Mediterranean area, didn't seem to obtain benefits from the traditional fatalistic approach of the local population. Britons did certainly better, and never surrendered.

On a day, a wonderful day for an auto-da-fé, when most of his colleagues would have burnt the engineer on the flames of the red revolution, the first reply appeared in the mail box. They did excuse for the delay, having left with the doubt of a negative feed back an high-potential profile. They simply had a long decision process, much longer than the average. They just asked for a phone interview, provided that the candidate had a valid phone number he could contacted to. Some junior Indian professionals didn't indeed rely on large familiar incomes and had when possible to cut the budget for technological not so useful gadgets.

Obtaining an Indian number wasn't so hard. Neither was to feign an Asia voice on the phone. Much harder was to convince an expert interviewer, trained by experience to spot a wannabe w ho tends to overestimate his achievements or a simple fool who oversells his skills. On the other part of the cable, although they were communicating through mobile phones who didn't require a physical line anymore, was talking a brilliant businessman. He was perhaps unaware of the last theories of psychoanalysis, as well as of the state of art of computer science, but he could distinguish between the demeanor of a cultivated gentleman and the boasting of an illiterate. Such qualities, despised by a Democratic Republic whose leaders were studying Russian to read the works of Karl Marx, were still appreciated in the emerging countries.


The engineer scored a partial victory when he obtained the contract. Yet he should have soon discovered that, quitting a world where skills are low and social dynamics could help to hide professional lack of competence, he would have necessary faced the harsh judgment of well paid, trained and praised technicians. If a couple of book on the desk would have been enough to sustain an incontrovertible professional superiority on undergraduates, he had to face Ph. Ds and post docs with the eagerness to learn and experiment of a teenager in a chem lab.

 


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By Matteo F. M. Sommaruga