On Careers I found a job listing for a company I know. Its Joel test claims to provide quiet working conditions, but this is not true. The developers share one desk in a huge co-working room (40+ people). Is this a valid reason to flag this job listing?

One one hand, it is a something every candidate invited will see. On the other hand I think the Joel test is a great feature on Careers and it shouldn't be misused and get corrupted.

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    "quiet" is a subjective word. You're not working on the side of an interstate right? So it’s pretty quiet..
    – Mike
    Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 13:38
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    quiet might be a subjective work. but a room with 40+ people in it is never a quiet surrounding. Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 13:40
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    Hmm, I think this would be a difficult flag to respond to. Who says it's correct? Who says you actually know them? Who says you're not disgruntled? (Not saying you are, but just referring to the general case). If a company lies about the test, they'll be found out by the applicant. Interesting question though.
    – Bart
    Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 13:42
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    Yeah, it's an interesting question. How should Careers handle community feedback? (The answer is probably: not at all, because it's bound to end in chaos - disgruntled ex-employees and competitors leaving negative feedback, employer's sock-puppets leaving positive comments... uggggh)
    – Pekka
    Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 13:44
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    Maybe in the same way, as stack overflow works in closing and deleting: if n (3 or 5?) candidates, that were invited through careers report cheating, action will be taken?? Maybe first the company is ask to change it them-selfs. ash: I dont know… Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 13:48
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    @vikingosegundo but how would you make sure the candidates actually went there? Any kind of formalized process would be wide open to abuse. There's a strong argument for saying Careers should not care about this at all; it's the candidates' responsibility to verify the conditions.
    – Pekka
    Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 13:54
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    The term 'quiet' is defined in the context meant here - joelonsoftware.com/articles/fog0000000043.html. Point 8 about 3/4 ways down the page.
    – Ren
    Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 13:56
  • @Pekka웃, sure. this information must be somehow tracked. Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 13:56
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    "Quiet" is a subjective word, really?? Hmm, so to objectively determine a quiet environment, one should purchase a sound meter to measure the decibels in the working room for a week and take the average of it or something?? Cmon now, we don't need more than our common senses to tell whether the working condition is quiet or not.
    – TtT23
    Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 14:37
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    What an awful working environment. Flag the hell out of them. Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 22:17

2 Answers 2


We can reach out to the company if you flag the job and we agree that something looks fishy. In general it's difficult for us to police claims a company makes in their listings.

Most companies are good when it comes to this because they'll likely be caught. If they're fudging the truth, we'll do our best to correct them. If they're really bad, we'll refund their money and keep them out of the community.


If they are fudging the truth, they just made your decision really easy: Don't work there. Employers need to learn to be candid and straight forward about their software development issues because if they are not even willing to recognize them, how can we hope to fix them?

The truth is we won't because they don't want us to! One can only wonder what kind of leadership they have and, bad politics they have it they are not even willing to increase productivity in their company with virtually no real long term costs. Even a wholly selfish person would realize this! You also need to realize this will be a detriment to your own potential and in turn those around you.

If they are dishonest about what they are hiring you for, what else do you think they might decide to hide?

Look at it this way: How does it affect your moral and personal well-being knowing you've been lied to or tricked after getting hired on? It is much better to ask hard questions and trust your intuition before getting hired. When they lie on the Joel Test, or do not even show the Joel Test on their posting it is an awesome way to take a stupid companies money, give it to a good company, and let us know not to work there :)

Policing would be a waste of a good companies time. Allow these companies to deface themselves.

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