SHRM Mag Ad Promotes Posting Jobs to .Jobs Sites SHRM Group Is to Decide

The comment period to collect opinions on the future of the .jobs domain closes Friday. But a two-page ad in the recent Staffing Management magazine from SHRM seems to say the decision has already been made.

The ad promotes the use of the planned series of job boards by the DirectEmployers Association. Against a snowy mountain backdrop, the ad lists a sampling of 18 of the planned “thousands” of job sites, among them and

“Coming soon!,” the ad promises. “List your jobs for free at thousands of locations.”

Technically, however, both the promise and the Internet addresses in the ad are premature. Under the rules by which the .jobs Internet extension was authorized, such names are not allowed. The rules allow only employer names to be used with a .jobs extension.

Whether the thousands of job boards ever come, let alone soon, is still to be decided. A SHRM-appointed group (the nine-members are the Policy Development Process Council) is studying a proposal to open up the naming rules to allow Employ Media to sell or (in the case of the DirectEmployers plan) “loan” geographic, occupational, and combination names.

SHRM is involved because it sponsored the creation of the .jobs domain as a way for employers to help job seekers find the jobs and career sites of specific companies. Five years after the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers approved the creation of .jobs, only a few thousand of the addresses were sold. So Employ Media began looking for ways to broaden the appeal of the domain. That’s where DirectEmployers got involved.

The history of this is detailed in multiple posts here.

Gary Rubin, SHRM’s chief publishing, e-media, and business development officer and point man for the .jobs policies, said the ad was “most likely” placed by Employ Media. “Ads for .Jobs in SHRM publications and websites are placed and paid for by Employ Media,” Rubin wrote in an email. He speculated that it was created before SHRM formed the advisory council.

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I sent an email to Tom Embrescia, CEO of Employ Media, asking about the ad, but have not yet heard back.

In an earlier email Rubin offered clarification on the comment period (comments can be posted here) and how SHRM is collecting HR community sentiment about the use of .jobs. He said the comment period would close Friday. Meanwhile, he reported that SHRM conducted a survey of its members to plumb their opinion on .jobs and its future.

The survey, Rubin wrote me was sent “to a sample that included approximately 1,400 HR generalists and 1,500 employment/recruiting professions. This quantity of HR professions sent surveys are sufficient to represent the views of the community.  It is a scientific survey, and the results will be tabulated for the Council.”

“The public comment application is for the sole purpose of informing the members of the Council on the perceptions of anyone in the community who chose to comment,” he added.

John Zappe is the editor of and a contributing editor of John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

Besides writing for ERE, John consults with staffing firms and employment agencies, providing content and managing their social media programs. He also works with organizations and businesses to assist with audience development and marketing. In his spare time  he can be found hiking in the California mountains or competing in canine agility and obedience competitions.

You can contact him here.


2 Comments on “SHRM Mag Ad Promotes Posting Jobs to .Jobs Sites SHRM Group Is to Decide

  1. John,

    Great article. You are bringing out information that the general public needs to be aware so candidates will be able to find employment without confusion.

    I am against the move by SHRM/EmployMedia/DirectEmployers for several reasons:

    This would be problematic for several reasons:

    1. What SHRM/EmployMedia/DirectEmployers is doing directly violates the charter from ICANN which only authorized EmployMedia to sell .jobs sub-domains to actual employers and only for their own job openings. The current activity is in direct violation of the ICANN charter. There was a solid reason for limiting the use of .jobs and it should NOT be violated.

    2. What happens if every top level domain (TLD) decides to violate their ICANN charter in the way SHRM/EmployMedia/Direct Employers are doing? The internet would be flooded with millions of sites causing massive confusion for both employers/HR and candidates.

    3. Contrary to what Bill Warren as stated, as a military job board, VetJobs is concerned that the proposed move by SHRM/EmployMedia/DirectEmployers would make it even more difficult for transitioning military, wounded warriors and veterans to locate well established job boards that have long focused on serving transitioning military personnel, veterans and their families. These sites have demonstrated that they understand and respect the unique culture and needs of veterans, something a mechanical array of tens of thousands of sub-domains proposed by EmployMedia/DirectEmployers could never match. The established sites have over the years earned the respect of veterans and veteran service organization by providing the military related users with effective employment resources and support. This move by SHRM/EmployMedia/DirectEmployers will directly hinder the men and women who have served our country so well. The members of our military deserve better treatment than what SHRM/EmployMedia/DirectEmployers proposes.

    4. This move by SHRM/EmployMedia/DirectEmployers would make employers susceptible to price gouging. While employers would theoretically be able to post their jobs for free on .jobs sites, the volume of such postings would virtually require that they purchase featured listings or other premium services, which only Employ Media would be authorized to sell. In effect, Employ Media would have a monopoly in this segment of the employment advertising market and thus be totally unconstrained in its ability to raise its prices.

    5. This move by SHRM/EmployMedia/DirectEmployers would undermine the investment employers have made in their corporate career sites. Millions of employers now rely on their own corporate career sites to connect with job seekers. Many have invested heavily in optimizing those sites for search engines. Indeed, in an era of constrained resources, relying on search engine results is now a primary method of attracting job seekers. By pouring tens of thousands of new .jobs sites into the market, Employ Media will diminish if not destroy the effectiveness of that outreach effort.

    For all the above reasons, VetJobs believes this move to be wrong. The bottom lines is Bill Warren through SHRM/EmployMedia is trying to establish a monopoly which is in direct violation of the ICANN charter. SHRM/EmployMedia/DirectEmployers should not be allowed to violate the ICANN charter.

    Ted Daywalt

    P. O. Box 71445
    Marietta, GA 30007-1445

  2. I couldn’t agree more with the questions raised in this article and the comments from the above poster. SHRM and Direct Employers should not only be ashamed of themselves but stripped of the responsibility (SHRM/Employmedia) and the opportunity to exploit (Direct Employers) employers.

    It’s maddening. I completed the “survey” by SHRM which comprises the comment period. All were loaded questions to further an agenda. “Would employers benefit from location specific or industry specific domains…?” made up the gist of several questions. They were positioned as benign “Hey if someone wants an IT job in Los Angeles would you like it if that job was easy to find?” What employer would say no (If they were hiring)? To be fair, the “survey” did offer a last question that was open ended for comments, which is where I spent most of my time.

    What it failed to ask was: Would you like for one organization to control thousands of the main access points to getting to that job, and if there was a ploy to sign your company up for a “Non-Profit” at a minimum of 15k per year, would you support that?

    Shenanigans folks.

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