In its continuing bid to become more relevant to young people, the Government announced controversial new recruitment measures today. From 2010, applicants for any UK job vacancy will be required to submit a copy of their Facebook profile to potential employers instead of the traditional curriculum vitae.
Membership of the social networking site will be mandatory from the end of this year, so people will have a chance to build up their profiles before the new employment laws come into effect.
Under the new rules, candidates will be judged on their popularity and grasp of modern culture as well as the quality and attractiveness of their friends. Favourite books, music and film quotes should be carefully compiled, and witty personal observations are strongly advised to make you "stand out in the crowd", Home Secretary Jacqui Smith said in a Commons statement.
"We feel CVs are stuffy and outdated," Ms Smith went on. "Today's employer does not want to know what GCSEs an applicant achieved, or what their hobbies are. These days, you can gauge more about a person from how many online acquaintances they have or their archive of YouTube clips. Having a degree from Oxford is all well and good, but if you haven't even bothered to download the SuperPoke application, then are you really who we are looking for?"
The Home Secretary added that she'd secured her own position in Gordon Brown's first cabinet thanks to a concerted campaign of message-posting on the new Prime Minister's communal "wall". One entry dated 15th June, read: "Loved the speech, Gordy. LOL. What about all those illegal immigrants, eh? Reckon I could do a better job than old Johnny Reid. :-) Lots of Love Jax. XXX."
Smith refused to comment, however, on tabloid allegations that her Labour party colleagues have been misusing Facebook. Rumours abound in Westminster that John Prescott only uses the website to sexually harass women from Hull, and Margaret Beckett has been personally rebuked by the Chief Whip for persistently poking David Milliband.