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Jan 2, 2014

here was an intriguing discussion on Facebook amongst some recruiters that I have great respect for (even when their opinions differ!): Casey Kugler had just got access to LinkedIn Recruiter for the first time and he was, of course, rather excited! Some others weighed in with their opinions about the validity of the tool, if he should be that excited and about the use of something like LinkedIn Recruiter in the first place. I’d like to venture the following opinion.

All the tools are equally great and all of them equally suck – it depends on what you’re using them for. Like I advise on resumes – every opportunity is different so every resume you send should be tailored for the role. The same is true for where we find our candidates: every opportunity is different so we need to use different sources, or use our sources differently.

I will never put a recruiting tool into the DNU box. Granted, I haven’t used a job board in 5+ years but that doesn’t mean I won’t. I haven’t had an opening where a job board like Monster will be useful. I have the places I like to hit first, how I hit them and it is all combined with the unique style (and humility) I bring to the table…

Finally, there is only one way of making a placement. Everything else is just a means to that end. The only way of ensuring everything in the process is by building a relationship on an individual basis. Having multiple professional relationships no matter how or when you make them is how you find qualified people. LinkedIn Recruiter, the Monster Board, Indeed, Twitter, Facebook etc. are means to an end – they are not the end itself. The end is the relationship.

How to Use LinkedIn Recruiter:

So without further ado, here’s one way of using LinkedIn Recruiter. It is one way that I handle this tool in our arsenal. YMMV both because of who you are, because of who you are recruiting and because of the vagaries of the universe.

OK, I spoke to soon. First, a little bit of “Ado” about pipelining.

Pipelining is all about getting people for roles that may open in the future. Heck, even for roles that might never be but they were people who you could see working with. Placements often will go not just to the best candidate, but the best candidate who was also the first candidate.

Here at Mobiquity, we are always on the lookout for Mobile Architects, Mobile Developers and other people with a specialty in the Mobile Universe.  Hence, even if I don’t have an open role, if the person I am speaking with has those skills, I put them in 2 databases. The one in my head and the ATS in the cloud. Because my head can often be in the real clouds, that’s a safer bet. In fact, I’ll even “mental rolodex” someone who doesn’t ever have skills we have needed yet at the MOB as a just in case. If they fit the culture, if the work skills are positive ones – well, you never know what might happen!

In order to create pipeline, you need to network. How do you develop a network? There are many ways.

  1. Always ask for advice but never ask for referrals. Say, “Where would you look for an iOS expert?” as opposed to “Do you know anyone for whom this role might fit?” No matter what, ASK SOMETHING

  2. Attend events. Get your name out there. Go to meetup and look for groups in your area. When you go, however, take your recruiter hat off. Just be yourself, listen to the speakers and make friends— don’t head hunt. Nothing will turn the group off more than an aggressive headhunter in their midst. Be an interested, casual observer— and not a jerk

  3. Remember that there is no bad candidate— just people you cannot place today. Remember names, make lists and keep a database

Your personal network of people you know and have met is what it is all about. The pipeline is my name for all of that network.

“But, Newman,” I hear you ask. “I have never recruited for this role before! In fact, I never even recruited in this geographic area before. I have no network! Where do I begin?” Well, I can share with you what just happened to me this month. My boss asked me who I knew in Dallas, Texas. Well, the answer to that is no one. In fact, I know maybe 10 people, total, in all of Texas. They are all in Austin. Nonetheless, I am tasked with doing all the recruiting for Dallas. Recruiting from San Francisco, where my Network is only now starting to grow, after relocating from NYC less than 6 months ago. Well, I do like a challenge….


My first stop was LinkedIn. I am a LinkedIn Whore. I will connect to anyone and everyone, as it isn’t those people you’re looking for. Your LinkedIn Network should be as much about your 2nd degree and 3rd degree connections as it is about the people you actually know. This is for both recruiters and job seekers. In this case, size does matter. I chose the Creative Director as my first role to work on. I used LinkedIn Recruiter to narrow down my search. Bottom line, I came up with about 75-100 people who were pretty on target, at least for an initial phone screen.

Now what? Everyone hates a spammer. Everyone hates being solicited, being asked for something that you might not be comfortable giving. So, I present you with my template that I sent to these 100 people:

Subject: Alas, alas—It’s a  mass email— Sometimes needs drive methods…. (forgive me!)


First, forgive my use of the mass email. If we end up connecting, you’ll know it isn’t my style. However, sometimes you have to use tools from the box that aren’t your favorite. This is one of those times.

I will spare the usual sales BS (well, I’ll throw in a little) but here’s the basics:

Mobiquity is opening a new office in Dallas. We have over 330 people, over 10 offices and are doing pretty well— Not bad for a 2 year old startup. I was asked to help bring the Dallas office into being. Right now, the only Dallas Employee is Carlos, our GM. He is looking for his first few hires to be people who will help not only drive their role— but help invent the Dallas Culture.

I have about 4-5 roles looking to start in January, but the Creative Director role is the one I am most excited about. CDs tend to bring culture with them and are often the heart of a firm like Mobiquity.

Why the mass email then? Well, I do most of my recruiting via networks. My Dallas Network is, shall we say weak?

I am hoping that even if this role doesn’t hit you, you might know someone. You might even know Account Execs, Client Partners, Mobile Architects or Project Managers— Most of all, I would love to connect and see if we can help each other.

Dang, I made this all about me! I am an upfront no BS guy, so it happens sometimes. Please check me out, forward my info on— or just delete it. I am not a stalker even if I am a recruiter. (and apparently a mass emailer)

Here’s a link to Mobiquity and one to the CD role …

I hope we end up chatting,


The keys here are that it is written in my style. It reads authentic. I own the mass email aspect. I own all the crap that people would initially think about being spammed like this.

Out of the 100 or so people inmailed, I got over a 30% positive response. I have already conducted about 12 screens, gotten a bunch of referrals, and have someone going in for a final in-person with the General Manager.

It was spam. However, it was well targeted spam. Plus, I feel that owning up to the practice made it more honest and less salesy. Honesty is the only way to go. It was also a great way to start opening up my Network. A way of getting my name, and Mobiquity’s name, out there.

We can talk about other places where we hunt people. LinkedIn recruiter is just one of them. We could talk about the best ways to use github, StackOverflow, trolling who has what Patents, who is the author of this app and then how to hunt them down. Everyone one of these is a great method and works well— in its place.

What we cannot lose sight of is that they are means to the goal, and not the goal itself. The goal is to build a huge network, composed of 100s of individual relationships and that will lead you to the right person for the opportunity. That it isn’t the tool we are using or even how we are using it. It is the question of is this expanding my network not just for this role, but all roles.

eff Newman a.k.a. The People's Recruiter, has been a Full Life Cycle IT Recruiter and Full Desk Placement expert for over 14 years. He prides himself on always making sure that what he is offering a candidate is an Opportunity and not just another job. He is always honest about the pluses and minuses and tries to not just be a recruiter but a career adviser. He is a Senior Talent Acquisition Specialist at Mobiquity in NYC.

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Posted: Jan 2, 2014 12:37pm
Oct 24, 2013

If you watch the X Factor, you’ll be familiar with the following phrases: “It means everything to me” and “I want this more than anything” usually followed by a short sob story and some tragic music. We love a good ‘rags-to-riches’ tale after all.

If, like me, you’re also an avid reader of thousands of CVs as part of your job – you may also be familiar with reading the following phrases within personal profiles: “Excellent communication skills, effective with all levels of management” and “I work well using my own initiative and as part of a team”.


I honestly can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen these classic cliché’s and, after loudly criticising them in the office one day, I started to wonder where they came from – shortly before realising I too had fallen victim to the familiar phenomenon myself.

I think it was one of those bad pieces of career advice we were given at school in the nineties. Ensuring employers could see that you could work well on your own as well as part of a team seemed paramount to landing a great job. The thing is – it just doesn’t mean anything to anyone, which I believe is why most recruiters scan straight down to your experience without even reading your carefully-worded profile.


Anyway, in order to get noticed by a recruiter, if you’re going to have a personal profile at the top of your CV (and why not? It’s a great chance to inject some personality into an otherwise formulaic document), how about writing something a bit more catchy? For example, I changed my standard mantra:

dedicated and hardworking individual

to this one:

I’m interested in adding value to the businesses I work for by finding the right candidates quickly and efficiently

I find that reading candidates profiles, or even cover letters (remember them?) so much more entertaining and likely to receive a call from me if there’s a real reason to pick up the &lsquohone and enter into some dialogue by having some initial engaging information. Suddenly as a recruiter, I’ve got a conversation opener already and you as a candidate have a key opportunity to show off.

Think about the aspects of the role that you enjoy and get the most from doing, and make a point of highlighting them right from the outset. This is also a good time to mention any specific achievements – the idea here is to sell yourself, and so many people forget that.


Another favourite habit of mine – nosy parker that I am – is checking out their interests. Sport, hobbies and the like are usual suspects; I’ve seen some more entertaining ones, including an accidental joke version of a CV that detailed a female’s sexual prowess within her organisation as well. If you’re going to make a joke version of your CV, try not to apply to jobs with it! I also never quite understand why candidates might include “family” as an interest. Personally, I would say my family are more than a passing interest to me, but each to their own!


Overall, my tips for revamping your CV are based upon being engaging, succinct, and relevant. Personally I prefer bullet pointed nuggets of information (no one likes wading through massive blocks of text) – you’ll only do yourself a disservice if you have a CV that goes unnoticed because of the layout and style. I would also never use Times New Roman as a CV font having seen it so much. Whilst on the subject of fonts, be sure to use the same font throughout, and use the bolding function sparingly. It is very hard to read through different fonts and styles of text.  If you want to stand out, add a bit of colour to your headings, or even the page. If I open a document and its coloured, it’s silly, but I notice it straight away. Writing about yourself in the third person is hated by most recruiters I know, as is a career history in the wrong order, which is your very first job at the top of your CV. I’m sure I’ve accidentally discounted CV’s thinking that they are totally irrelevant on that basis. Make sure your contact details are clearly at the top of the CV. Simple to do, but many bury away this key information at the bottom, or some don’t include it at all, relying on the job board or CV database to provide that information.


There’s no one way to write the perfect CV so above all else, make sure it’s an accurate reflection of your skills and experience. There’s nothing – I repeat, nothing more embarrassing then a candidate that’s oversold themselves on paper and hits every flat note possible on the auditions. Good luck people!

Author: Gemma Duncan is a recruiter and resourcer.

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Posted: Oct 24, 2013 1:13pm
Oct 17, 2013

You’re written yourself a great resume, but you want it to be read – which words do you use? Here are the top 20 power words to be put in your survey and to impress the reader (courtesy of CareerBliss).

Which are your favourites? Let us know in the comments below!


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Posted: Oct 17, 2013 1:49pm
Oct 17, 2013

The types of job hoppers:

  • Necessary Hoppers: The necessary hoppers feel that they have served their time at their place of work and they have given all they can give. They have decided that they are leaving and that is that.
  • Boredom Hoppers: Boredom hoppers tend to have short attention spans so feel they need to change their job regularly to keep it interesting.
  • Opportunity Hoppers: Opportunity hoppers can’t resist a good offer, as soon as they smell the hint of something better, they hop!
  • Career Hoppers: Career hoppers just can’t decide what they want to do. Their job history usually resembles a job board’s vacancy list (Chef for six months, Scuba Diving instructor for three months, Shop Keeper for four months).
The positives of job hoppers:

Usually, recruiters like us see job hopping in a negative light but there can be positives to someone who has job hopping tendencies:

  • Diverse working environments: As job hoppers will have worked in a range of companies they will have usually experienced a range of diverse working environments, which can make an employee more adaptable to change. If an employee gets ‘set in their ways’ it can be very difficult to make changes within a company, someone that is already familiar with this would not be as fussed about adapting.
  • Range of skills: Working for a wide range of different companies can increase a candidate’s skill set, this diversity could prove a very useful asset for your company. Often job hoppers will have worked with a range of professionals, this will have increased the variety of skills that they have as they will have learnt from these people.
  • Larger network for contacts: Generally job hoppers will have more business contacts than someone that has been in the same company their whole life. Employees with a large network of contacts could also prove useful for your company.
  • Experience of different size companies: Different size companies often have unique ways of working, an employee that has experienced first-hand what has worked and what hasn’t worked could prove extremely useful.
  • Drive and enthusiasm: Often job hoppers can add a boost to a company’s productivity, as everyone wants to make a good impression when they first start a new job. Although, there are some exceptions some job hoppers can be extremely lazy which could be the reason for the job hopping.
  • Fearless approach: Job hoppers are usually not afraid to try new things, in some situations this fearless approach could prove quite useful for your business.
How to avoid job hopping:

If you are a job hopper and you are wanting to find a way to stay satisfied within your job for a more than a few months then you might want to pay attention to some of the pointers below:

  • Get promoted within your company: Why move to another company to start all your hard work all over again? You could boost your enthusiasm within the same company by taking on more responsibility and being promoted. Keep your eyes peeled for opportunities within your company, when they arise approach the relevant person about the opportunity.
  • Take on new challenges in your role: Ask to take on new challenges within your role, this will stimulate your brain and also show that you like to be challenged. If you impress your employer this could lead to a promotion, which is also a good reason to challenge yourself!
  • Keep yourself busy within your work: If you are busy within your role you will not be thinking about your next job hop, keep yourself motivated by setting personal and achievable goals within your role. Making job lists can also help keep you on track and organised.

READ MORE: Job Hopper? 6 Quick Fixes to Cover Resume Gaps

Final thought:

The grass is always greener on the other side, except when it isn’t. In reality every job has its ups and downs. If you are in a difficult position at work, make sure that you’ve weighed up every aspect, good and bad, of your job before rushing into any final decisions. If all else fails and you have tried your best, it’s probably time to move on.

Author: Daniel Briggs is the Marketing Manager at Blue Octopus Recruitment, an award winning online recruiter. From Yorkshire and proud.

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Posted: Oct 17, 2013 1:48pm
Oct 14, 2013

“Judge a man by his questions rather than his answers.” – Voltaire

“We make our world significant by the courage of our questions and by the depth of our answers.” – Carl Sagan

“The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” – Ayn Rand

As I turn 35 and think of my life so far and what’s to come, I realize how much I’m shaped by the questions I ask.  I’ve always been insatiably curious.  These are the 35 questions that have made the biggest impact on my life.


What are you pretending not to know? This was perhaps the most powerful question I was ever asked (by my best friend @bengleib).  All possibilities open up when we stop deceiving ourselves.

Why don’t you do the things you know you should be doing? Life isn’t about figuring out what to do.  The real challenge is (not so) simply doing the things we know we should be doing.

What are your values and are you being true to them? Write down the 3 most important aspects of each of these areas: family, romantic relationships, friends, work, health, sex and spirituality.  These are your values.  When we don’t act congruently with what we value, symptoms of discomfort arise.

In what ways are you being perceived, that you’re not aware of? ­Perception is reality.  Make sure, for better or worse, you know what people really think of you.  (TIP: Watch “How to Persuade People”)

What don’t you know, that you don’t know? It’s always the obstacles that we don’t even see coming that are the biggest challenges in life.  Get in the habit of asking people that have been there and done it before for guidance.

Happiness / Peace of Mind

Are your “shoulds” getting in the way of your happiness? The desires of our ego are often in conflict with the emotions of our heart.  You’ll always have what you want, if you want what you have.

If you achieved all of your life’s goals how would you feel? How can you feel that along the way? The discipline of delayed gratification is one of the most powerful habits of successful individuals. But most actions we take are meant to elicit an emotion in the now.  We’re happier striving for our goals when we let ourselves feel that which we want to feel when our outcome is achieved.

What did I learn today? Who did I love? What made me laugh? I try and ask myself these 3 questions at the end of each day.  Regardless of anything else that happens, if you learned something new, loved a good person and got to laugh heartily, it was a day worth having and remembering.


If you weren’t scared what would you do? Use the rocking chair test.  What would your 90-year-old self, looking back on your own life, advise you to do in the moment?  

If you were dying, would you worry about this?  We so easily lose perspective on what takes up our energy and focus.  We’re all dying.  Sometimes we need to remind ourselves of this to enjoy living.  (TIP: Read “The Last Lecture” and “Tuesdays with Morrie&rdquo

Should you be focused on today or tomorrow? Savor the present but don’t forget your future.  Life is a balance of knowing when to enjoy the moment vs. when to plant seeds for tomorrow’s harvest.

Influence / Achievement

Why not?  What would happen if…? Don’t accept that things just are the way they are.  Question why something can’t be done.  And when you get pushback to these questions, reframe the negative answers with possibilities. (TIP: Watch “Steve Job’s Vision of the World&rdquo

What/Who did you make better today? The way to measure your worth may just be to give more than you take.  Asking what/who you made better each day is a simple litmus test we can all measure ourselves by.

What do you want your life to be in 5 years? If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll never get there – Lewis Carroll.  Write down 5-year goals.  They’re close enough to grasp for, yet far off enough to achieve almost anything.

What can you do today to improve? Consistent, incremental improvement is the secret to achieving the greatest of feats.

Business / Entrepreneurship

What’s your WHY? If you have a big enough WHY you’ll always figure out the What and the How.  If you don’t have a BIG WHY, you’ll always use the What and the How as an excuse for not doing that thing you said you were going to do.  (Watch “What’s Your Why&rdquo

What’s the one most important thing to get done today/ this week/month? Write this down on a Post-it note at the beginning of each day/week, and hold yourself accountable for completing this above all other Stuff To Do.

What questions must you consider before starting a business? See my list by watching “The 10 Questions” or reading the document 

What’s the potential upside? What’s the effort involved? What’s the likelihood of success? What’s the strategic value? This is the framework I came up with 3 years ago on “How to Make the Right Business Decisions”.  Whenever there is an opportunity cost, I have my team go through this exercise.

What are we talking about? What problem are we solving? I try to start off every meeting by putting this on the whiteboard.  In group settings we too often we find ourselves having completely different conversations.  Sometimes when answers are difficult to come by, it’s helpful to question if we’re solving for the right problem.

Can you get it done now? If something is important or urgent and you can get it done now, do it.  (TIP: Read “Getting Things Done” from the productivity guru David Allen)

What do you need to make it happen? This is one of my favorite questions to ask as a manager.  It creates ownership to make sure the goals will be achieved.  And it creates a shared responsibility to provide the resources required (time, money, talent, etc.) to achieve those goals.

If we could wave a magic wand and do anything together, what would that look like?  I use this question all the time with potential business partners.  By removing the perceived constraints that bind us and focusing on mutually desired outcomes, we often discover new pathways of possibility.

How would your role models act and carry themselves? Act as if.  Act as if you have the experience, wisdom and swagger of your role model, and you’ll often find even the most unchartered of situations more navigable.

When can we meet? We’re often this one question away from engaging with someone who can open up limitless avenues of possibility.   The most important aspect of business is still to always get it done in person.  (TIP: Read “Business Development Advice&rdquo 

Will you be my mentor? It’s one question that, when asked in earnest, almost nobody will turn down.  Reach out to a person in a position and industry you admire, and ask them if you can take them to coffee and hear about how they got there.

What will I only know about you after we’ve worked together for a year? This interview question comes from the awesome Wendy Lea (CEO, GetSatisfaction).  This may be the best interview question I’ve ever heard.  (Watch “Fireside Chat with Wendy Lea” and check out my previous 8 Awesome Interview Questions)

What would get you interested in our product/service? Selling is the art of asking good questions, listening, and matching your value to people’s needs.  Sales is very easy when others explain what they want and need from you.  (Watch “The 5 Step Sales Process&rdquo


What else? Such a simple but powerful question with so may applications.

Visibility: Everyone
Posted: Oct 14, 2013 11:21pm
May 30, 2013

Most Asked Job Interview


Jorgen Sundberg

The original Undercover Recruiter, after 7 years in tech recruiting Jorgen now runs Link Humans, a social media marketing agency in London

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Posted: May 30, 2013 12:54pm
Apr 25, 2013

In the war for talent, which will make more candidates apply – a career website or a talent community? This infographic, from Ascendify, gives all the answers.

  • 10% of people apply via career sites compared to 90% who join talent communities.
  • Career websites are static, impersonal and complicated, whereas job communities are active, engaging and easy to join.
  • Career websites supply insufficient sourcing with a high turnover, whereas talent communities give quality, long term employee referrals.

RELATED: Top 5 Job Search Aggregators for a Smarter Job Hunt

Career Websites vs Talent Communities

Laurence Hebberd

Laurence Hebberd is Community Manager for Link Humans in London. He also runs the Link Humans Twitter feed - @LinkHumans.

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Posted: Apr 25, 2013 9:49am
Apr 25, 2013

With the wide adoption of social media over the last couple of years, the conversation has evolved away from “Why use social media?” to “How do you use social media?”.  A simple Google search for “social media etiquette” brings up 1,580,000 results. But do we really need all of those articles to tell us how to behave online?

Sites like LinkedIn have shifted us away from anonymous internet usage to an age of personal branding and online identity ownership. So, if our online profiles are to be taken as extensions of ourselves or at least representations of our best self, shouldn’t our actions online just be a reflection of what we are like offline?

If social media is just a new tool to achieve the same end goal – to communicate – shouldn’t the same etiquette for communicating in person or over the telephone apply?

If LinkedIn was a real-life networking event, how would you react if you saw these behaviours?

  • A person walks in and starts handing out his business cards without having spoken to anyone – This is what it looks like when you send out LinkedIn invitations to connect without personalising the message or introducing yourself.
  • People exchange business cards but don’t speak to each other at all during the entire event – If all you do is connect with people but do not follow-up, you’re just building a collection of names. Without any past interactions, the likelihood of people being receptive to anything you have to offer in the future is pretty low.
  • There is a group of people talking to each other. Among them stands someone who doesn’t speak or react but insists on standing within the group – If you’re not contributing to the discussions happening around you, you’re not adding value to the community. Which begs the question, why should people connect with you in the first place? No one will think of “the guy who just stood there” when a job or an opportunity comes up and they need someone to fill it.
  • A recruiter talks to everyone in the room but all she’s got to say is what jobs she has open – The scatter gun approach to advertising your jobs rarely work. If you’re speaking to a room of professionals with mixed skill sets, is it really appropriate to tell all of them about the 10 IT jobs you are recruiting for?
  • The guy who can only talk about a position he worked in 5 years agoUpdate your LinkedIn profile. When all people have to go on is your profile, give them as much information as you can so that they have an idea of why you are worth their time. Outdated information is not appealing to anyone.
  • A woman gives a pat on the back to each person who starts a discussion or makes a comment – Likes are powerful social signals. They denote positive feedback and act as an endorsement for an article or status update.  They are snippets of online connection that hopefully add up and facilitate real conversations. However, over-usage lead will lead to fatigue and will eventually diminish the value of your “Like” within your network.

Most interactions online are analogous to situations we encounter offline. This begs the question; do we really need to learn new set of written rules on social media etiquette to be able to function on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Google+? Let us know what you think in the comments.

Maebellyne Ventura

Maebellyne Ventura is a digital marketing professional within the recruitment industry. She is also one of the founders of Clever Biscuit, a young start-up creating simple and innovative products. Follow Maebellyne on Twitter @Maebellyne.

Visibility: Everyone
Posted: Apr 25, 2013 9:47am
Apr 22, 2013



1.       The Dilbert Principle

"We're a planet of nearly six billion ninnies living in a civilization that was created by a few thousand amazingly smart deviants."

2.       The Complete Yes Minister

"The reason most organizational programs abort is that they fail to deal with our life patterns, which are at the foundation of workplace anxiety, tension and conflict."

3.       Poorly Made in China

"American companies...were no match for savvy Chinese industrialists who often went out of their way to manipulate product specifications to widen profit margins."

4.       Don't Bring It to Work

"It's called 'the law of inverse relevance': the less you intend to do about something, the more you have to keep talking about it."

5.       21 Dirty Tricks at Work

"Dirty tricks are more than just a career-threatening nuisance; they also form part of the political backdrop to all the great recent organizational scandals."

6.       Crazy Bosses

"After nearly 6,000 years of evidence on the subject, one thing stands clear: the people who end up as leaders in any organization, large or small, are often the craziest guys around."

7.       The Peter Principle

"Anything that works will be used in progressively more challenging applications until it fails."

8.       The 4-Hour Workweek

"Alternating periods of activity and rest is necessary to survive, let alone thrive. Capacity, interest, and mental endurance all wax and wane. Plan accordingly."

9.       The No Asshole Rule

"Two-faced backstabbers...who have enough skill and emotional control to save their dirty work for moments when they can't get caught, are tougher to stop--even though they may do as much damage as a raging maniac."

10. How to Lie With Statistics

"A well-wrapped statistic is better than Hitler's 'big lie'; it misleads, yet it cannot be pinned on you."

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Posted: Apr 22, 2013 1:28pm
Mar 19, 2013

Japanese Militarism & 
Diaoyutai (Senkaku) Island
- A Japanese Historian's View
by Kiyoshi Inoue , Professor of History department, Kyoto University, Japan 
For more info, refer to his book "Senkaku Retto"

Truth of History
 == Not to be brain-washed

In June 2004, another Japanese professor Tadayoshi Murata of Yokohama National University, published "Senkaku Islands vs the Diaoyu Islands Dispute" (some info is here) and supports that "Since the Ming Dynasty, Chinese maps and documents of many kinds marked Diaoyu Islands, Huangwei Islands, Chiwei Islands as being lying within the territory of China".

The island did not appear in the Map of Great Japan in 1876 drew by Japan's General Staff Office of the Ministry of Army . Japan's claim of its purported "discovery in 1884" of the Diaoyu Islands contradicts with the navigation map in its own 1783 historical document Sankoku Tsuran Zusetsu published by prominent Japanese military scholar Hayashi Shiheiclearly stating the area a part of China . The inconvenient Truth behind the Diaoyu/Senkaku islands . What does the view of some Japanese scholars tell us ? . Small islands – Big problem: Senkaku/Diaoyu

Japanese Professor Murata said, "We tend to take the opinion of the government, political parties and media as being the correct views and accept them readily; however, those opinions do not necessarily represent the truth. To us scholars, what is important is what is real, what is true, not the national interest; over this point, political parties and media have the same problem."

Root Cause . & Trouble Maker
In WWI , China, suffering as a Western colonial victim, sent 140,000 Chinese Labor Corps to help allies and served on the Western Front. About 2,000 - 20,000 Chinese had died . After WWI , ignoring China , the Western colonial U.S., Britain and France transferred German concessions in China to Japan in Article 156 of Treaty of Versailles , rather than returning sovereign authority to China.

In WWII , China still suffered as a Western colonial victim. More than half of China was also brutally colonized by Japan. To China, the WWII had actually lasted 14 years, and suffered the longest and the deepest from Japan's aggression, with the lost of 20-30 million Chinese lives . After WWII , due to Cold War , colonial U.S. again ignored China and all other Asian countries brutally victimized by Japan. The San Fransisco Peace Treaty with Japan in 1951 thus became an unprecedented BIG sell-out of ALL victimized Asian countries by the U.S..

U.S. forces periodically used the Diaoyu (Senkaku) island as an aerial bombing target. The U.S. military applied each time to the Chinese (Taiwan) government for authorization . In1953 , after Korean War , U.S. again ignored China , arbitrarily and unilaterally re-defined the so-called "geographical boundary lines of the Ryukyu Islands" to include Diaoyu (Senkaku) island . In 1971 , U.S. again ignored China , and returned the Diaoyu (Senkaku) Island to Japan under the so-called "administrative right over Okinawa" violating indirectly both the Cairo Declaration and the Potsdam Declaration which specifically stated that : "Japan will also be expelled from all other territories which she has taken by violence and greed" "Japanese sovereignty shall be limited to the islands of Honshu , Hokkaido , Kyushu , Shikoku" only. Absolutely does NOT include Okinawaat all.

The Japanese Instrument of Surrender clearly stated : "We, acting by command of and on behalf of the Emperor of Japan, the Japanese Government and the Japanese Imperial General Headquarters, hereby accept the provisions in the declaration issued by the heads of the Governments of the United States, China, and Great Britain 26 July 1945 at Potsdam ..... We hereby undertake for the Emperor, the Japanese Government, and their successors to carry out the provisions of the Potsdam Declaration in good faith ....." see Picture.

The shocking truth : Not only the Diaoyu (Senkaku) Island, actually even the whole Ryukyu (Okinawa) is NOT Japanese territory !.

After years of re-arming Japan, U.S. now refers to Japan as the "Britain of the Far East". The 2006 Quadrennial Defense Report states explicitly: "China has the greatest potential to compete militarily with the U.S....absent U.S. counter-strategies." According to the U.S. Defense Planning Guidance leaked to the press in 1992, the primary aim of U.S. strategy would be to bar the rise of any competing superpower
Therefore, by design or not , amidst a growing crisis : 
Sep 23, 2012, What Crisis? U.S. Marines and Japan troops train for war 
Oct 14, 2012, Japan, US troops mull drill to take island 
Oct 19, 2012, China steps up isles spat with navy drills 
Oct 22, 2012, Japan, US call off naval drill for fear of China's reaction. China could no longer be ignored as 30 years ago ! 
Nov 2, 2012, Chinese ships consistently conduct Diaoyu Islands sea patrol
Nov 7, 2012, Despite tensions, US and Japan begin a new set of war games
Dec 4, 2012, China opposes U.S. Senate's Senkaku amendment to US-Japan Security Treaty
Dec 13, 2012, Chinese plane joins Diaoyu Islands patrol for 1st time
Dec 14, 2012, China submits islands claim to UN
Dec 17, 2012, Hawk's return in Japan heartens US
Jan 10, 2013, Japan scrambles fighters as PLA jets near disputed Diaoyu islands 
Jan 15, 2013, Japan, US fighter planes in joint drill
Jan 21, 2013, China rebukes US over "ignorant" comments on island dispute
Feb 4, 2013, China’s Senkakus operations overseen by party task force led by Xi
Feb 5, 2013, Japan minister: China frigate locked radar on Japan navyChina accuses Japan of 'smear' over radar incident

The islands which are being called the Senkaku Islands in Japan and to which the Japanese Government claims title have historically been definitely China's territory. As the victor in the1894-95 war with Ching (China), Japan seized these islands along with Taiwan and the Penghu Islands and incorporated them into Okinawa Prefecture as Japanese territory. The Cairo Declaration jointly issued by China, the United States and British during World War II stipulates the return to China by Japan of all the territory she had stolen from China during and after the Japan-Ching war, including Taiwan and Manchuria. The Potsdam Proclamation issued by the allies stipulates that Japan must carry out the clauses of the Cairo Declaration. These islands have been automatically reverted to China as its territory just as Taiwan has been automatically returned to China from the time Japan unconditionally accepted the Cairo Declaration and the Posdam Proclamation and surrendered to the allies including China. It follows that these islands are territory of the People's Republic of China, the only authority over the entire China.

But in collusion with U.S. imperialism, the reactionary rulers and militarist forces of Japan are making a clamour that the Senkaku Islands are Japanese territory in an attempt to drag the Japanese people into the militairst, anti-China whirlwind. This big whirlwind is sure to become fiercer after the return to Japan of the so-called "administrative right over Okinawa" by the U.S. armed forces on May 15 this year. We who are truly striving for the independence of the Japanese nation, Japan-China friendship and peace in Asia must smash in good time this big conspiracy of the U.S.-Japanese reactionaries. As a weapon for use in this struggle, I will give a brief account of the history of the so-called Senkaku Islands. For detailed and special historical research, please refer to my article published in the February 1972 issue of Historical Research magazine.

The so-called Senkaku Islands were recorded in Chinese documents in the middle of the 16th century at the latest, under the names of Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyu Island, Diaoyu Tai), Huangwei Yu, etc. (Yu means islet). In 1532 when the emperor of the Ming Dynasty of China bestowed the title King Chungshan of Ryukyu on Shang Ching, the ruler of Ryukyu at that time, his envoy Chen Kan travelled between Foochow and Naha. According to the Records of the Imperial Mission to Ryukyu, Chen Kan's ship set sail from the mouth of the Minkiang River on the 8th of the 5th moon, 1532, on a south-southwest course towards Keelung of Taiwan. (According to the preface of Chen Kan's Records of the Imperial Mission to Ryukyu, his trip to Ryukyu was made in the 13th year of China Ching, i.e. 1534. - Ed.) It turned eastward leaning a litter to the north on the waters off Taiwan and passed by the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) on the 10th of the 5th moon. He wrote in his diary : On the 10th, the ship sailed swiftly with a strong south wind ..... the Pingchia Hill (now called Pengchia), Tiaoyu Yu (now called Diaoyutai), Huangmao Yu (now called Huangwei Yu) and Chih Yu (now called Chihwei Yu) were left behind ..... On the evening of the 11th, the Kumi Hill (now called Kume Island) was in sight. It belongs to Ryukyu. The aborigines (Ryukyu people) on board were elated, happy to be home."

An imperial envoy was first sent to Ryukyu by the Chinese emperor in 1372. Since then, ten imperial envoys had travelled between Foochow and Naha before Chen Kan. They took the same route as Chen Kan, heading for Keelung and the Pengchia, Tiaoyu (Diaoyu), Huangwei and Chihwei Islands respectively, arriving at the Kume Island and finally entering Naha Port through the Kerama Islands. (In their return trips, they sailed northward directly from the Kume Island without passing the Tiaoyu (Diaoyu) Islands.) Therefore, if the records by the imperial envoys before Chen Kan were available, they would surely have mentioned the Tiaoyu (Diaoyu) and other islands. But regrettably those records have been lost. Those by Chen Kan are the oldest in existence. From the absence of any explanatory notes on the Tiaoyu (Diaoyu) and other islands, it can be concluded that the locations of these islands had been known long beore, and that they had not only been given Chinese names, but had also been actually used as marks on navigation routes. What is particularly important is that in his records. Chen Kan described how he started form China's territory Foochow and passed by several Chinese islands, and not until he had arrived at the Kume Island did he write: "It belongs to Ryukyu". The records pointed out specifically that lying ahead of the Kume Island was Ryukyu. This clearly shows that the islands he passed by before reaching the Kume Island were not Ryukyu territory.

Kuo Ju-lin, the imperial envoy following Chen Kan, set sail from Foochow on the 29th of the 5th moon in 1561. In his Re-engraved Records of the Imperial Mission to Ryukyu, he wrote: "On the 1st of the intercalary 5th moon, we passed by Tiaoyu (Diaoyu) and arrived at Chih Yu on the 3rd. Chih Yu is a hill bordering on Ryukyu territory. Another day of favourable wind, the Kumi Hill (Kume Island) will be in sight". In other words, what Chen Kan had written - the area beyond the Kume Island was Ryukyu territory - was presented by Kuo Ju-lin in the descrition that Chihwei Yu was the boundary between the Ryukyu region and China's territory.

It is clear from the above two documents that Ryukyu territory began from the Kume Island, whereas the Chih Yu Island and the area west of it were China's territory. But Toshio Okuhara, Associate Professor of International Law of Kokushikan University, argued that the records of Imperial Envoys Chen Kan and Kuo Ju-lin only mentioned that Ryukyu territroy began from the Kume Island and the area they covered before reaching there did not belong to Ryukyu, but that the records did not say explicitly that Chihwei Yu and the area west of it were China's territory. Therefore, he held that they were res nullius or land without owner ("Title to the Senkaku Islands and the 'Ming Pao' Article" by Okuhara,Chugoku magazine, September 1971).

This is but to explain ancient Chinese writing by interpretation of international law of the modern times. It is sheer sophistry. True, the Imperial Envoys Chen Kan and Kuo Ju-lin had not written explicitly that all were Chinese territory as far as Chih Yu. But they set sail from China's Foochow, passed through waters off Taiwan's Keelung which self-evidently is Chinese territory, and then passed by Pengchia Yu which again self-evidently is also Chinese territory; and finally upon arriving at Chihwei Yu after passing by Tiaoyu (Diaoyu) and Huangwei, they wrote that it was the boundary with Ryukyu. Moreover, when they came in sight of the Kume Island they added that it belonged to Ryukyu. From the structural coherence of such Chinese writing, is it not explicitly clear that to them, from Taiwan and Pengchia to the Taioyu (Diaoyu), Huangwei, Chihwei and other islands to the east all were Chinese territory ?

Okuhara also argued that since the records of Imperial Envoys Chen Kan and Kuo Ju-lin are the oldest in existence and since there are no similar records by imperial envoys after them, it would be valueless to take such ancient records as evidence for current issues. This also is utterly groundless and runs counter to the facts. Among the records by imperial envoys after Chen and Kuo, the Chungshan Mission Records written by the Imperial Envoy Hsu Pao-kuang in the 58th year of Kang Hsi during the Ching Dynasty (1719) cited passages from A Geographic Guide in Outline written in 1708 by Cheng Shun Tse, the most renowned scholar of Ryukyu in his time, which described the navigation route from Foochow to Naha, and when referring to the Kume Island, called it "the Chen Hill at the southwest boder of Ryukyu." Chen means garrisoning the state frontier or a village boder.

The Chungshan Mission Records also dealt in detail with the territory of Ryukyu, which comprised the 36 islands of Ryukyu including the Okinawa Island. Chihwei Yu and the area west of the it were not included. Furthmore, at the end of the explanatory notes on the Ishigaki and eight neighbouring islands of the Yaeyama Archipelago, it was written that the eight islands were "the southwestern most boundary of Ryukyu" (the Iriomote Island of the Yaeyama group among the Ryukyu Islands being the nearest to the Taioyu (Daioyu) Island).

The Chungshan Mission Records were based on writings by the great scholar Cheng Shun Tse and many other Ryukyu people as well as talks between Hsu Pao-kuang and high-ranking officials of the court of the Ryukyu king. Therefore, the above-mentioned descriptions of the Kume Island and Yaeyama Islands are actually the views not only of the Chinese but also of the Ryukyu people at that time.

Noteworthy is a description from the Records of the Imperial Mission to Ryukyu written in 1683 by Wang Chi, and imperial envoy before Hsu Pao-kuang. It said that when the ship passed beyond Chihwei Yu, a sacrificial ceremony was held to pray for safety on the sea. That area was referred to as chiao (outskirts) or kou (trough) and was clearly defined as the "boundary between China and foreigh land." Here, Okuhara's wish was met; it was explicitly written down as the boundary between China and Ryukyu.

Concluding from the above-mentioned, Ryukyu territroy began from the Kume Island and the area east of it, whereas Chihwei Yu and the Huangwei Yu and Tiaoyu Yu (Diaoyutai) to the west were Chinese territory. Obviously, this was defined in clear terms after the middle of the 16th century at the latest. There are no records or documents whatsoever by the Ryukyu side or the Japanese expressing disagreement or doubt. Moreover, there are not even legends, not to say documents about contacts of the Ryukyu people with the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) and Huangwei Yu in ancient times. Sailing from Ryukyu to the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) was particularly difficult because it was against the wind and the tide. In the middle of the 19th century, that is, the closing years of Japan's feudal period, the Ryukyu people knew the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) as Yokon (or Yokun), the Huangwei Yu as "Kubashima", and the Chihwei Yu as "Kumesekishima". This was confirmed by the records of the last Chinese imperial envoy. These in no way affect the title to these territories. The map and explanations about Ryukyu Kingdom in the book General Illustrations of Three Countries by Shihei Hayashi were completely based on the Chungshan Mission Records. The Chungshan Mission Records had found their way to Japan long ago and there was even a Japanese edition. This document was the most comprehensive and authoritative source of knowledge about Ryukyu for the Japanese people in the late Edo period.

After the Meiji Reform, in the period 1872-79 (from the 5th to the 12th year of Meiji), the Tenno government forcibly carried out the so-called "Ryukyu disposal", conquered the centuries-old Ryukyu Kingdom, and turned this former colony of the feudal lord Shimazu into a colony of the Tenno system under the name "Okinawa Prefecture". Naturally, the area of Okinawa Prefecture did not exceed the territorial limit of the former Ryukyu Kingdom.

The year when Ryukyu was turned into Okinawa Prefecture was also the year when the conflict between the Ching government of China and Japan concerning the title to these territories reached a climax. Shimazu conquered the Ryukyu in 1609 and turned it into a colonial dependency. But all the successive kings of Ryukyu pledged allegiance to the Chinese emperor as vassal, first to the emperors of the Ming Dynasty, then to those of the Ching Dynasty, and accepted titles from them. From the point of view of the Ching Dynasty of China, the whole Ryukyu was its dependency and claimed title to it against Japan's claim.

As to the dispute between Japan and the Ching government concerning the title to Ryukyu, the democratic revolutionaries of Japan at that time held that it should be decided by the Ryukyu people themselves whether Ryukyu should belong to Japan or to Ching (China), or became independent. If the Ryukyu people wanted independence, Japan should be the first to recognize and support it, and should tell the world at large the principle that big countries should not encroach on small countries. They declared that this was also the road for Japan to win full independence from the Western powers. Isn't this an idea that we should take over and develope today ?

We still leave this aside for the moment. Former U.S. President Ulysses S. Grant had in a private capacity mediated negotiations between Japan and the Ching government on the dispute. During the negotiations, the Chinese side put forward a formula to divide Ryukyu into three parts, stipulating the Amami Islands (which also belonged to the Ryukyu Kingdom before Shimazu conquered Ryukyu) as Japanese territory; Okinawa and its surrounding islands as the territory of an independent Ryukyu Kingdom; and the Miyako and Yaeyama Islands in the south as Chinese territory. As a counter-measure, the Japanese side proposed to divide Ryukyu into two parts: from the Okinawa Islands and to the north were to be Japanese territory and the Miyako-Yaeyama Islands Chinese territory. Since the Tiaoyu Islands (Diaoyutai) were beyond Ryukyu territory, they naturally were not treated as objects of negotiation either in Japan's or in the Ching government's proposal.

The Ching government finally compromised and in September 1880 the plenipotentiaries of Japan and the Ching government signed a treaty dividing Ryukyu into two parts in accordance with the Japanese formula. However, the Ching emperor refused to approved the treaty and instructed his government to continue the negotiations with Japan. The Japanese side then broke off the negotiations. In 1882 when Shinichiro Takezoe assumed office as consul in Tientsin, he resumed negotiations with the Ching government on the partition of Ryukyu, but no agreement was reached. The question was thus shelved by the Japanese and Ching governments until the Japan-Ching war broke out.

In other words, even after the Meijin Reform, until the outbreak of the Japan-Ching war, Japan had not even thought of claiming title to the Tiaoyu (Diaoyutai) and other islands or challenging Ching's title to the islands. It goes without saying that all people in the world regarded the islands as territory of Ching (China).

During that time, in 1884 (the 17th year of Meiji), Tatsushiro Koga, a native of Fukuoka Prefecture who lived in Naha since 1879 and made a living by catching and exporting marine products, found innumerable albatrosses on the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) and sent his employees there to collect albatross feathers on the island and marine products in its vicinity. His business grew from year to year. One month in 1894, the year when the Japan-Ching war broke out, he applied to the Okinawa prefectural government for a lease of land to develope his business on the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai). But according to reports published in the Okinawa Mainichi Shimbun (January 1 to 9, 1910), which lauded the merits of Koga, the prefectural government did not grant his application because "it was not clear at the time whether the island belonged to the (Japanese) empire". So Koga directly applied to the minister of the interior and the minister of agriculture and commerce in Toyko. In an interview with the ministers, he gave them an account of the island and begged their approval. His request was again turned down on the grounds that the title to the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) was "uncertain".

As the (Japan-Ching) war of 27th-28th year of Meiji had ended and Taiwan was incorporated into the (Japanese) empire, and as the Senkaku Islands were proclaimed our territory by Imperial Decree No. 13 in the 29th year of Meiji (1896)", Koga immediately applied to the Okinawa prefectural governor again for a lease of land. It was only in Septermber of the same year that his request was approved. (Okinawa Mainichi Shimbun)

This is important, decisive information. Whether Koga's application to the Okinawa prefectural and central governments for a lease of the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) was made before or after the outbreak of the 1894 Japan-Ching war remains inknown, but both the prefectural and central governments had declared that title to that island was uncertain. Had the Japanese Government regarded the island as res nullius in accordance with international law, there would have been no reason why it should not have promptly approved Koga's application. TheJapanese Government was not in a position to approve Koga's application precisely because the island was clearly Ching territory, not a piece of land the title to which was uncertain.

As victor in the Japan-Ching war, Japan seized the Penghu Islands, Taiwan and other islands appertaining to it from Ching. At the same time, she also regarded as Japanese territory the Tiaoyu (Diaoyu), Huangwei, Chihwei and other islands - Chinese territory linking Taiwan and Ryukyu.

Despite the allegation that the Senkaku Islands had become Japanese territory by virtue of the 1896 (29th year of Meiji) Imperial Decree No. 13 as mentioned above, the fact remains that this imperial decree was issued on March 5 with regard to the formation of various districts of Okinawa Prefecture and said nothing about incorporating the Tiaoyu (Diaoyutai) and other islands into Okinawa Prefecture. The "Views Concerning the Title to the Senkaku Islands and Sovereign Right Over the Development of Resources of the Continental Shelf" made public by the Ryukyu civil government in Semptember 1970 said that these islands "have been made Japanese territory on April 1 in the 29th year of Meiji under the administration of Ishigaki Village, Yaeyama District, Okinawa Prefecture, after the cabinet decision of January 14 of the 28th year of Meiji and on the basis of Imperial Decree No. 13". But the Imperial Decree No. 13 is just as it is described above. Probably, the Tiaoyu (Diaoyutai) and other islands were incorporated into Ishigaki Village of Yaeyama District on April 1 in accordance with an order issued by the interior minister to change the boundary of the Yaeyama District, an order based on Article 2 of the March 5 imperial decree.

How was the afore-mentioned January 14, 1895 cabinet decision worded ? And why was it enforced 10 months after the Japan-Ching war had ended, the peace treaty had become effective (May 1895) and Japan had actually taken possession of Taiwan and other islands (June) ? I have not yet completed my investigations into these problems. But one thing perfectly clear now is that, as recorded in the afore-said Okinawa Mainichi Shimbun, the Tiaoyu (Diaoyutai) and other islands were regarded as Japanese territory only after Japan had seized Taiwan and other places from Ching through the Japan-Ching war as part of a series of territories wrested from Ching.

Four years afterwards, that is, 1900, Tsune Kuroiwa, a teacher of the Okinawa Prefecture Normal School, explored the Tiaoyu Islands (Diaoyutai). He gave the Tiaoyu (Diaoyutai) and Chihwei Islands and the group of reefs between them the name of Senkaku Islands, and published his report under the title of "Exploration of the Senkaku Islands" in the 140-141 issues of the 12th volume of the Geographic Magazine. It was only since then that these islands have been called the Senkaku Islands by Japan. The group of reefs between the Tiaoyu (Diaoyutai) and Huangwei Islands was called the Pinnacle Group in British naval and navigation charts at that time, a name adopted after the contour of the group. This British name was translated as the "Sento Islands" in the navigation charts of the Japanese navy. It was also translated by some as "Senkaku Islands". It was from this enlightenment that Kuroiwa had chosen the name. As the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) also looks like a rocky hill above the sea, it was given together with the Sento Islands and the Huangwei Yu, the general name of the Senkaku Islands.

Noteworthy here is that the Senkaku Islands, named by Kuroiwa and now claimed by the Japanese Government to be Japanese territory, do not include the Chihwei Yu. Probably the Japanese Government considers that the point at issue with China lies in the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) and intends to treat the inclusion of the Chihwei Yu in Japanese territory as self-evident. Thus, it tries to get away with it by mentioning only the "Senkaku Islands" represented by the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) while keeping quiet about the Chihwei Yu.

But geographically, the Chihwei Yu is one of the islands such as the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) and the Huangwei Yu on the verge of the Chinese continental shelf. As mentioned in detail above, it was recognized as Chinese territory simultaneously with the Tiaoyu (Diaoyu) and other islands in history and this was recorded in documents. Therefore, one should not be concerned only about what Japan calls the "Senkaku Islands" but forget the Chihwei Yu.

Proceeding from the Japanese people stand of opposition to militarism, one should reject the name Senkaku Islands, which was adopted by Japanese militarism after seizing them from China, and use the only correct name in history, namely, the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) or the Tiaoyu (Diaoyu) Archipelago represented by the Tiaoyu Island (Diaoyutai) and including Chihwei Yu to the east and all the islands in between. This is the only correct name.

The history of the Tiaoyu Islands (Diaoyutai) being as the above-mentioned, it follows that the People's Republic of China alone has title to them, as pointed out at the beginning of this article. There can be no other historical conclusion ! 

Truth of History == Not to be brain-washed

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Posted: Mar 19, 2013 9:59am


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