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    Horror-Story 2: Ex-Googler ALMOST rejected for not knowing the Bayesian formula by heart

    Lord I hate that sort of thing. “Oh, you have twenty years’ experience and a dozen conference presentations and published peer-reviewed papers and great references…but you don’t remember off the top of your head something that you could Google and remember in five minutes? DENIED!”

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      “Out of boundless sea of formulae and theorems in modern mathematics you can’t remember the one I really like? Are you for real?!”

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      I worked at ESPN for a bit and candidates were dismissed for not being big enough sports fans. Some of the folks in the interviewing process would do things like give the candidate a sheet of logos and ask them to name which sport they belong to and which team it was. Didn’t matter if they were technically sound, they wanted them to be fans more than anything else. One of the reasons I left.

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        I don’t know the context neither the atmosphere @ESPN, but I’d advocate that this would be some kind of cultural requirement. I totally agree that it’s not the most important requirement, but I understand why some company have a strong attachment to their activity domain.

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          I’m a pretty big sports fan, but when you’re actively ignoring candidates because they don’t know certain stat leaders, it goes beyond culture fit. I actually had that question asked of me. I knew the answer, but I saw great candidates fail on those types of questions.

          Then they complain about not being able to find people..

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          A friend once worked for what was formerly Cricinfo, and he most definitely was not into any kind of sports prior to joining the company. He became an ardent follower of cricket (the game, not the insect!) during his tenure there.

          He left after Cricinfo became ESPNcricinfo.