A 32-year-old contestant, Guo Jie suddenly fainted following a series of questions from a panel of company executives on the job-hunting program Only you which aired on Tianjin TV recently.
Instead of helping to pick him up, the TV host asked Guo: "Are you putting on a show?"
The panel had raised tough questions about theauthenticityof his diplomas, as well as his level of French language proficiency.
Later, Kai-fu Lee, chairman and CEO of Innovation Works, launched apetitionon Sina Weibo, calling on the public to boycott the TV program.
The reason cited was that both the TV host Zhang Shaogang, and the employers "did not give due respect to the interviewees" and "sent a negative message to job seekers".
By June 11, more than 300, 000 micro blog users had cast votes to give support to Li, which accounts for 94.1 percent of all voters.
This has sparked comment on whether TV shows could act as models for real-life job recruitment, either for students or HRs.
Some argued that both the interviewers and interviewees were exaggerating and only trying to win over the audience.
Many company HRs who have been closely following the programs gave their opinions.
Tian Huang, the human resource director in Yulong Computer Telecommunication Scientific (Shenzhen) Co., Ltd asked us to be morecriticalof the content.
"A system modeled on a TV show could possibly be adopted as a recruitment tool," he said.
"But I also noticed one common problem was that some bosses were not using the correct methods togaugethe ability of potential recruits."
According to Tian, employers in this type of TV show seldom look beyond the "hardqualifications" like the diplomas people hold.
But in real life, employers would pay greater attention to a candidate's "softer, behavior-based skills", like innovation ability. They would allow candidates much more time to demonstrate what they can offer to a company.
HR experts also pointed out that, in a real-life interview candidates often needed to work in teams totackletasks that test their businessacumen. But there's seldom a group procedure on TV.
Zhou Mingjian, human resource expert in Job1001.com has criticized such programs, saying that they depict college graduates in a bad light.
Panels tend to makehastyor negative judgment of graduate contestants, based only on answers to one or two questions.
In Zhou's company, recruitment processes generally involve application form filling, interviews and sometimes evenassessmentcenters.
Many firms also ask candidates to take online personality tests as well as games that challenge their ability to handle information and numbers.
In the meantime, interviewees on the show tend tooveract.
Zhu Zhenshi, a director in Shenzhen TV station said that candidates were often too eager to seek favor with the audience or judges.
They would act in an inappropriate way, like arguing with the judge, or displaying skills employers didn't look for.
"Such actions would not help employers identify your edge over others," said Zhu.
"TV job-hunting might be a good show full of conflict, but simply applying what you see on the show to a real interview would be risky."