One of the issues in policy making these days is whether employers can or should reference-check candidates by accessing their social media profiles – commonly LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Most of the debate focuses on the legal issues, yet the fundamentals of why we conduct references and whether using social media in a hiring decision is a good idea in the first place, have been left untouched. At its basic level, conducting a reference is done to see that the CV and interview stories check out and to get evidence of competencies from previous employers. It is true that checking out someone’s LinkedIn profile would possibly highlight discrepancies, but a devious candidate probably would have falsified both their application CV and LinkedIn profile equally. Some are questioning why we would go out of our way to look for extraneous hints from their personal life, when it is the business context we should spend time exploring. The point is that a good reference is not an FBI check to discover embarrassing secrets. It may be time for us to accept that people at work are not necessarily the same as they are at home or on the sports field for that matter, and that this is OK.