hiQ Wins Motion for Preliminary Injunction in Landmark Lawsuit against LinkedIn

Note to Editors: On August 14, 2017, Judge Edward Chen of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California granted hiQ Labs’ request for a Preliminary Injunction (PI) against LinkedIn Corporation to prevent LinkedIn from using legal or technological measures to restrict hiQ’s access to publicly available LinkedIn profile information that hiQ uses to provide analysis and insight to its clients.

hiQ issued the following statement in response to the decision:

SAN FRANCISCO, CA (August 14, 2017) – This is an important victory – not just for hiQ, but for any company that uses publicly available data for the services it provides.  hiQ believes that public data must remain public, and innovation on the Internet should not be stifled by legal bullying or the anti-competitive hoarding of public data by a small group of powerful companies.  

In granting our request for a preliminary injunction against LinkedIn, Judge Chen rejected LinkedIn’s attempt to cast hiQ’s aggregation and analysis of publicly available information from the LinkedIn website as a violation of a federal criminal statute. Specifically, the judge ruled “the Court is doubtful that the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act may be invoked by LinkedIn to punish hiQ for accessing publicly available data; the broad interpretation of the CFAA advocated by LinkedIn, if adopted, could profoundly impact open access to the Internet, a result that Congress could not have intended when it enacted the CFAA over three decades ago.”  The Court further explained that if “merely viewing a website in contravention of a unilateral directive from a private entity would be a crime,” the law would “effect[] the digital equivalence of Medusa.”  The court also ruled that “hiQ has raised serious questions as to whether LinkedIn, in blocking hiQ’s access to public data, possibly as a means to limiting competition, violates state law.” 

This ruling allows us to continue serving our clients while we seek to permanently prevent LinkedIn from monopolizing the aggregation and analysis of publicly available information on the web. This is a step in the right direction to ensure that any person or company looking to build a business on data analytics of public data may do so. This includes any company who may have received a cease-and-desist letter from LinkedIn or other companies trying to exert exclusive control over information designated public by their users. 

It is important to understand that hiQ doesn’t analyze private sections of LinkedIn – we only review public profile information. We don’t republish or sell the data we collect. We only use it as the basis for the valuable analysis we provide to employers.  Moreover, LinkedIn doesn’t own the data contained in member profiles. It is information the members themselves have decided to display publicly, and it is available to anyone with access to a web browser.

And despite LinkedIn’s protests that they are only trying to protect the privacy of their members, the Court noted with respect to LinkedIn’s Recruiter product, LinkedIn “trumpets its own product in a way that seems to afford little deference to the very privacy concerns it professes to be protecting in this case.”  At the hearing, hiQ pointed out that LinkedIn marketing materials indicate that it may be selling services to third parties based on LinkedIn profile information in its entirety (regardless of whether Members have designated the information private). The San Francisco Chronicle recently characterized LinkedIn as being“guilty of blatant hypocrisy,” and Judge Chen referenced LinkedIn’s practices in his ruling.

We look forward to presenting our full case to the Court, to LinkedIn and to the public, as we seek a Permanent Injunction to prevent LinkedIn from “walling off” sections of the public Internet simply to eliminate market competitors.

Our Commitment to Privacy, Free Speech and Fair Use

Statement of Mark Weidick

CEO, hiQ Labs Inc.

Note to Editors: On June 30, 2017, LinkedIn Corporation agreed to stop blocking hiQ Labs’ access to the LinkedIn website while a federal court considers whether hiQ’s access is a legal and fair use of publicly available information. This agreement allows hiQ to continue using LinkedIn’s data as a source for the analysis and insight hiQ provides to its employer clients.

hiQ Labs CEO Mark Weidick issued the following statement in response to the agreement:

SAN FRANCISCO, CA July 1, 2017 – We are pleased to have reached this agreement with LinkedIn. This is a case with broad ramifications for free speech, competitiveness and the fair use of material available to all on the Internet. We are happy to have the opportunity to continue our work while these important matters are resolved.

It is important to understand that hiQ doesn’t analyze private sections of LinkedIn—we only review public profile information. We don’t republish or sell the data we collect. We use it only as the basis for the valuable analysis we provide to employers. We do nothing more than what employers, recruiters and HR departments do every day.

Other for-profit companies, including Google, Yahoo!, and Bing, copy and index large portions of the public parts of LinkedIn’s website and display that information in their search engine results for all the world to see.

We know that LinkedIn wants to get into our business, and that’s ok. We just don’t think they should do so by illegally forcing out a competitor.

We look forward to making our case to the court, to LinkedIn and to the public as we seek a permanent injunction to prevent LinkedIn from taking action that threatens any company that uses publicly available data to inform the services they provide.

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NOTE: Judge Edward Chen of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California will now decide whether to issue a Preliminary Injunction (PI) declaring hiQ’s work legal and permanently preventing LinkedIn from taking further action to block hiQ’s business model. The case is hiQ Labs, Inc. v. LinkedIn Corporation (Case No. 3:17-cv-03301).

How To Build Superior Retention With hiQ Labs

He doesn’t walk around the office giving disingenuous high-fives and loud praise. As co-founder of hiQ Labs, Kaplan gives employees authentic hugs, showing his team how much he values them.

It’s this appreciation for great talent and a company’s need to retain them that inspired Kaplan to develop hiQ’s data-driven platform. Infatuated with data, but knowing it’s all about the people inside organizations, Kaplan searched for a way to bring the two together.
— Heather R. Huhman - Come Recommended

When to Override an Algorithm

Algorithms are getting a lot of press recently. They are simply a set of rules a computer can follow, but when combined with predictive modeling and machine learning, they can be a powerful tool to help us make good decisions. People analytics is bringing the power of models and algorithms to help with people-related business decisions. Using algorithms, a computer can help us make hiring decisions based on an applicant's predicted performance, and not their first name, or help us learn which employees might be getting offers to work at other companies.

As algorithms grow in accuracy and popularity, we can consider a future in which all of our decisions are made using data, statistics, logic, and other rational processes. Will algorithms ever become so helpful that they make our emotions and intuition irrelevant?

Read the rest of the article on LinkedIn

hiQ Labs People Analytics Solution Wins HR Tech Product of the Year

SAN FRANCISCO, CA — September 21, 2016 — hiQ Labs, the leader in people analytics, announced today that it has won the “Human Resources Executive’s Top Product of 2016.” 

hiQ Labs’ award winning turnover model predicts employee attrition months before it happens giving CHRO’s and business leaders time to have prescriptive interventions. Utilizing public data and machine learning models, hiQ Control Center maps out the “recruitability” of a company’s employees, and alerts employers to the talent that might be at risk of being approached by competitors. This offers tremendous insight for employers, eliminating staffing surprises and saving millions of dollars in unplanned turnover all while strategically retaining key talent.  

For the past 19 years, editors of Human Resource Executive have recognized the newest HR product innovators that are transforming how key HR tasks and processes are done. Following the extensive evaluation of each solution, winning products were selected based on their level of innovation, business impact and intuitiveness for the user combined with their ability to deliver on what they promise. Amongst a very intense field of entries, hiQ Labs’ Control Center was selected as Product of the Year, based on the business impact it provides by using predictive models to help employers protect their most valuable asset – their employees.  hiQ Labs will accept this momentous award in front of industry champions and thought leaders at the HR Technology Conference and Expo in Chicago, on October 5, 2016.

“We started hiQ Labs to help companies compete for their own talent against the recruiters trying to pull their talent away.  We empower business leaders to stop the damaging loss of top talent within their organization before it can begin. hiQ Labs is humbled to be recognized by the leaders at HR Tech. This prestigious award acknowledges it’s time for a pivot in the industry; time for data science and people analytics to massively influence workforce planning,” says Genevieve Graves, Chief Science and Strategy Officer, Co-Founder at hiQ Labs.

About hiQ Labs

Founded in 2013, hiQ Labs is the global standard for People Analytics. By applying data science and machine learning to internal and external data, hiQ Labs helps HR teams make better, more reliable people decisions. Easy to deploy and fast to deliver predictive insights, hiQ Labs' cloud platform transforms how enterprises retain their best talent. The world's most forward thinking brands rely on hiQ Labs to significantly reduce turnover and save millions of dollars in employee attrition.

For more information, visit: www.hiqlabs.com
Get your free Employee Risk Analysis at: https://www.hiqlabs.com/risk-report
Join our People Analytics community at www.hiqlabs.com/elevate

15 tips to help HR get started with People Analytics

In short, analytics isn’t easy (though perhaps not as difficult as some may think), and as such many HR professionals are still struggling to get to grips with it.
— David Green

hiQ Labs, the Global Standard for People Analytics, Honored to Present on the Giant Ideas Stage at MongoDB World 2016

hiQ Labs creates an open-source framework, QmMap, that works natively with Python and MongoDB to process massive datasets in parallel

NEW YORK, June 27, 2016 -- hiQ Labs takes HR to a new level of data-driven insight and predictive analytics with its core product, leveraging multiple data sources with cutting-edge data science that help companies manage their workforce more effectively.

hiQ Labs' team leaders Dan Miller, CTO, and Silas Barta, Staff Software Engineer, were faced with a challenge; how to help Fortune 100 customers scale their HR business using multiple internal and external data sources. The existing tools available didn't have the capabilities they needed, so they had a Giant Idea to leverage the MongoDB platform to build an application that can process huge datasets quickly and robustly using on-demand compute power.

"We decided to skip the usual path of Oracle/SQL database with Hadoop/Spark as it can be overly complex and expensive, inflexible, and resource-heavy. Instead, we built our own solution directly on MongoDB," said Dan Miller, CTO, hiQ Labs. "This new application, QmMap, created by hiQ Labs, has a simple interface and deployment strategy which enables an agile workflow from R&D code to production pipeline processing at scale and is FOSS (Free and Open-Source Software)."

QmMap perfectly complements MongoDB's strengths regarding low entry cost, minimal learning curve, and the ability to scale up to serious production. "hiQ Labs is honored to be among technology's elite to share QmMap on the Giant Ideas Stage atMongoDB World. This new application allows hiQ Labs to leverage the use of large datasets and machine learning techniques, to predict employee attrition risk and solve critical talent management problems such as mapping skillsets and talent pools within an organization to enable internal mobility and succession planning," said Darren Kaplan, CEO, hiQ Labs.

About hiQ Labs

hiQ Labs is the global standard for People Analytics. By applying data science and machine learning to internal and external data, hiQ Labs helps HR teams make better, more reliable people decisions. Easy to deploy and fast to deliver predictive insights, hiQ Labs' cloud platform transforms how enterprises retain their best talent. The world's most forward thinking brands rely on hiQ Labs to significantly reduce turnover and save millions of dollars in employee attrition.