If I've heard it once, I've heard it a million times: Recruiters do not give ample "respect" to older candidates. At least, from the point of view of older candidates. Now you have to understand something about me. I am so liberal that I had to join the green party. I left a super cushy job at a big ol' global recruitment firm because I felt that they weren't giving female candidates ample representation to their clients. So I am the last person to discriminate based on Age.
However, I do discriminate based upon whether or not people are rude. And the fact is, many of the more "seasoned" candidates are often rude to speak to. They either have spoken to so many recruiters in their career that they don't even have the bandwidth left to fake niceness for a 15 minute call, or they just can't believe that a young person like me has any knowledge to offer. And that's ok. I've been doing this job long enough to know that no matter what a candidates' experience is, there will always be another candidate with similar experience who is also nice.
I also discriminate against people who refuse to keep up with technology. If I'm placing you in a startup, you need to be at the leading edge of technology, not lagging behind it with a MySpace link on your resume. (I have seen this. I have SEEN THIS!) Startups often disrupt the current market and think of new ways to solve problems with technology. Often the person who can do that is not the same person who still has a DVD player plugged into their Television set. If you require a call on a landline... I may have similar reservations.
And to be honest, the bitterness and the inability to see another point of view, to accept another opinion as valid is a sign of people getting more and more set in their ways. Now, I don't think this is an age thing. I had some college room mates who where that way at 18. (Megan....) But those are not the qualities that are going to be viable in the current job market.
If you are dynamic, intelligent and open minded, I could get you a job at 75. If you are stuck in your ways, rude, and a late adopter, I wouldn't be able to get you a job the day after you graduated from Harvard.
But, take heart! You can always change! You can always learn about new technologies and adapt a new outlook.