Linkedin Warnings

As Linkedin goes down the road of trying to serve the paradox of allowing people to have large productive networks yet ensuring no one ever receives any email they don’t want all while promoting the heck out of everything, they’ve decided to make some changes. They aren’t good, hence the word Warning in the headline.

First, If you’ve been using the questions and answers feature, be warned that when you give your 25th answer an email you have no control over will be sent to your network notifying them that you’ve answered 25 questions. At least, they did this to me. I’ve contacted Linkedin to find out how to shut this off, but have yet to get an answer.

Moral? Don’t answer questions unless you’re ok with your network being unexpectedly spammed by

Second, if you use the new feature that allows you to invite fellow Linkedin members to connect, without knowing their email address, and the recipient decides they don’t know you (after all, none of us ever forgets anyone, right?) you get a black mark. Get 5 of those black marks and you lose your account.

Moral: Don’t use the invite-without-email feature. You just can’t count on anyone not hitting the wrong button, especially these days where any action on a computer is undoable.

Third,  if you have invitations sitting out there, they a) don’t expire despite anything Linkedin tells anyone, and someone you invited years before Linkedin changed their policy can decide they don’t know you thus giving you a black mark, and b) if you widthdraw an invitation, really withdrew since they no longer allow users to withdraw invitations, and then later re-invite someone, it counts as a second invitation against your 3000 invitation limit. I have one “I don’t know” from an invitation I sent back in 2005.

Moral:  It’s better to be invited than to invite. Feel free to send email to people asking them to invite you. It’s outside of Linkedin’s system so they cannot control it and it’s preferable to sending invitations via Linkedin that may lead to an account cancellation if Linkedin decides to do another retroactive policy change.

4 thoughts on “Linkedin Warnings

  1. Does the “5 strikes and you’re out rule” apply when you invite people using their em addresses? LinkedIn has posted a warning message on my home page that it will soon require me to use em addresses but nothing about kicking me off. I exchanged a half-dozen trouble tickets with customer service complaining; the CSR was friendly but could not get the message taken down. I also upgraded to Personal Plus thinking that the company might hesitate to remove a paying customer.


  2. I hate to tell you this, but Linkedin doesn’t give a hoot about customers. The name of the game for them is how many members they have. Anything to get members. Since you cannot delete an account on your own – everything ends with “email customer service” – there’s not much motivation for them to fix anything is there? When you add in that most of the people joining now are barely using the service, it will be some time before the pressure is enough to cause them to be more responsive.

    My advice is to use the service, but don’t get addicted to it and certainly don’t pay for it.


  3. Thanks Steve. Any thoughts on Facebook? I joined a year ago as a faculty member but did not find it useful. However, I’ve now joined a large FaceBook network (Silicon Valley) and created a Group and an event. I’m having a bear of a time getting Facebook to accept csv or tab-limited files from my FileMaker Pro contact database. Also it seems very childish compared to LinkedIn.


  4. I think Facebook has promise, but not until it grows up a little. is another choice, which is a lot more international than Linkedin or Facebook. I’m not sure the ultimate application is out there yet, and there are rumors that Google is going to enter the space.

    BTW, your email address is bouncing.


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