What Happened To Expertise?

Where do you look for information these days? Google, YouTube, Social Media? Why did we trade quality information for quickness or convenience? By quality information, I mean accurate, factual, and true. Is the information you rely on actually coming from a source with expertise?

We used to look for expertise in the form of people, books, libraries, educational institutions which provided a sort of check and balance to the quality of information we had access to. There were editors, fact-checkers, and consequences for tossing anything out there. Actual degrees from real educational institutions were earned over time. Now, we see more online entities creating their own credentials…badges, accreditations, top fan status often to reinforce their interests. Some are buying to their value and pay the price when the product or service doesn’t measure up or they can’t get decent customer support.

Online reviews are not substitutes for experience and real credentials. How reviews are obtained is not visible to the buyer. Shouldn’t we still be asking about a “proven track record”?

Consider looking for real expertise when you want to buy a service. Don’t just rely on reviews that could have come from anywhere. Ask about experience and results. Check whether there are local providers who can also provide you with the support that you may need.