How our Lack of SQL Joins and Foreign Keys Aided Us in Our Journey

“We don’t have foreign keys in our databases at Hootsuite.”


My friend practically choked on his coffee. I gently patted him on his back as he bent over and coughed, his eyes nearly popping out of his head. I felt a strange surge of excitement at his reaction, much like the kind of excitement one gets upon telling a child Santa Claus is not real. Not that I would ever do that, of course.

“We also don’t do any SQL joins,” I said.

“What?!” he spat, “Okay sure fine yeah okay but why would you not want to enforce correct data?! This is so absurd!”

He gripped his head and looked at me, fear and confusion in his eyes (and a bit of coffee on his shirt, unfortunately). After believing something for so many years, how could anyone come along and say anything otherwise? How dare anyone deny the truth? Unless, maybe.. The truth has been a lie all along?

“Are you going to tell me why?”

“Nah, you’re gonna have to wait for my blog post.”

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