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MTV Hiring “Twitter Jockey” with Web Competition Series. Whole Idea Seems “Terrible”

Remember back when the job application process involved sending in a written application including a resume, coming in for a job interview, then waiting until you hear back yes or no from the employer in question? That probably still happens somewhere, but more and more every job must be hired through a broadcasted competition between an even number of young hopefuls. Enter MTV and it’s quest to find a Twitter Jockey.

Twenty up-and-comers will compete in a series of challenges online over the summer, then the finalists will duke it out on a live television broadcast on August 8, after which fans will ultimately choose who gets the job. Because trusting the MTV fan base to choose your employees seems like a really good idea.

Before we get into how excessive the whole process is, can we just look at what exactly this job consists of? From the Associated Press article:

“The hope is that this person will be dynamic, engaging and energized, an enthusiast within the social media world,” said Dave Sirulnik, the executive overseeing the contest. “Somebody who will represent the audience by taking their thoughts and questions and … through an ongoing dialogue with them, be able to bring those questions inside the walls here to the people who make MTV.”

The new Twitter Jockey will report on MTV events, such as the Video Music Awards in September, and appear on-air periodically.

If my eyes don’t deceive me, there’s something weird going on right here. Basically, these contestants will endure senseless trials to get the prestigious job of scouring through the bajillion tweets aimed at MTV to find the few useful suggestions, along with tweeting whenever MTV does something important. You’re competing to do jobs often done by an unpaid intern, people. Why? Oh right, to be on television, even if it isn’t on the Video Jockey scale. (Also, might I mention that this job doesn’t seem at all close to Jockeying?)

But back to the competition, how could this possibly be a good idea? If the challenges are going to prove the contestants’ qualifications, they should probably all involve Twitter. And really, how many challenges can you even conceive that are bot interesting and Twitter-intensive? Not enough to narrow a field of 20 down to just 5 finalists. Watching people compete for what’s probably a monotonous, even painful job can’t be that enjoyable either.

But there might be one incentive to compete that I haven’t mentioned. From the AP:

Viewers can nominate themselves or their favorite Facebook friends for the position online beginning Monday. The MTV TJ will be based in New York and earn a six-figure salary.

Six figures in New York for knowing how to tweet? Sign me up. And please, nobody tell MTV that they are about to shell out over a hundred thousand dollars a year to someone who’s doing what other media outlets make their lackeys do.

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