Unvarnished: 'Reputation marketplace' or just trash talk?

Tech outlets are widely panning Unvarnished, a new Web site launching this week, as a possible trollfest.

Tech outlets are widely panning Unvarnished, a new Web site launching this week, as a possible trollfest. The site is a sort of freestyle LinkedIn where anyone can make comments on someone's professional profile, i.e., “As a manager Mr. Y was the worst.” (Or maybe something less tame.)

The site's tagline suggests a more lofty goal: “Unvarnished is an online resource for building, managing, and researching professional reputation.” Its founders come from places like eBay, VMWare, and even LinkedIn.

Writes Molly Woods at CNET :

Maybe I'm sadly jaded at this point, but I think creating a "social network" dedicated to reviewing and rating people basically amplifies everything that's awful about the Web right now: anonymous, drive-by, ad hominem attacks that can't be erased or edited and that live in search forever.

Although I haven't seen the site yet (it's in beta, invitation-only mode), I can't imagine who would have time to police their rep on yet another social network, responding to every attack. Then again, maybe people would find something worthwhile in a more interactive-styled LinkedIn?

TechCrunch has a couple screenshots of the new forum here in a post it titled: "Unvarnished: A Clean, Well-Lighted Place for Defamation."

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