Saturday 7 June 2014

Food 4 Thought: Worth the Read 6/6/2014 #LinkedIn Lockout! #HighRestriction

I read interesting informative posts and articles about business, social media, marketing, networking, and the like all the time. I'm a bit of a junkie when it comes to this type of thing. So I thought I would share at least one said post or article every Friday, and maybe send you into your weekend with some food for thought.

That is how I start each of my Food 4 Thought: Worth the Read posts. I clearly state I want to share with my readers articles and post I have found, I think they might be interested in. I am not compensated and do this to interact with my readers, and maybe share something that might be helpful.

I was not Linked on LinkedIn for a very long time. As a stay at home Mom (SAHM) for 18 years I felt LinkedIn was a social medium that should be used for business, occupational, and professional networking and "linking". After I started my blog, I felt justified signing up for LinkedIn since other bloggers and blog groups were there, and it appeared to be a good place to network, and connect.

For me LinkedIn isn't like other social mediums. It is specifically for business networking, so I limit my sharing of both my own and others posts to topics I think fit that category. I do not share my latest giveaway, or twitter party. I seldom share a promo post unless it is about a product or brand that I feel will be of interest in a business, marketing, networking or family-business balance kind of way. 

Each day "Pulse" on LinkedIn suggests posts and articles that might interest me. So my Worth the Read posts seemed like a perfect fit for sharing on LinkedIn. In fact some of the links I share I have read and found via Pulse on LinkedIn. Certainly the topic for my Worth the Read March 24, 2014 #JobSearching in the Digital Age seemed like a relevant topic. I share the links to the original place I read the post. I then take the time to inform the authors via comments or twitter, that I have shared a link to their post. 

Last week I found myself locked out of LinkedIn with no email notification or reason why. I asked for details about what, when and how I had broken the rules so that I might not make this mistake again. 
Response From LinkedIn: "We've recently received complaints from other members that you've posted promotional updates or comments on the posts of LinkedIn members that appear to be phishing, spam, or abusive in nature. We realize not everyone understands how updates and comments on LinkedIn should be used. However, the LinkedIn User Agreement prohibits using LinkedIn to connect with people you did not know and/or sending or posting unsolicited messages.
Your LinkedIn account has been suspended pending your response stating that you'll adhere to the LinkedIn User Agreement and Privacy Policy from this day forward."
It is true I had shared my Worth the Read post in my LinkedIn updates, as well I had left a comment on a LinkedIn Influencer post stating I had shared his post. Apparently one of these actions, or maybe adding a link to the post had someway violated the terms or rules of linkedIn. 

I was mortified and angry. I don't try to contact people I do not know, although seriously what is the point of contacting people I already know? If the point is to network ... I think you get my drift. Apparently you can read others posts, for example a LinkedIn Influencer post, but in order share or comment you need to be able to read minds and guess if said sharing is abusive spam. Um...question? What about all the people who ask me to link with them that I have never heard of before? 

I thought the point of LinkedIn was to share, and network about employment, job searching, and business. Otherwise please explain the job opportunities sent to my inbox from LinkedIn. Please explain the suggested posts, people and groups LinkedIn shares (maybe to often - aka SPAM) with me. Since I don't know the people LinkedIn suggests are they just mocking me? I honestly thought I was doing exactly what LinkedIn was established for. 

Other than providing a link to my blog and the offending post, no other explanation was provided. Clearly no one bothered to read the post (including whomever had complained). No "Sorry, sometimes these things happen, or clearly you are not phishing, spam or abusive in nature." I shouldn't take it personally, but it felt personal, and yet very impersonal. I shared my thoughts, and suggested they share them with someone senior. Maybe the LinkedIn guy who spoke at the Blogging Conference I recently paid to attend. Can he explain why being put on "high restriction" for trying to share is good business.  
From me: "That was a post from my blog sharing a number of posts many recommended to me on LinkedIn about advice and tips on searching for jobs in the digital age. I was not compensated for this and make a point to share with the authors when I link to a post they have written as a courtesy. One of the posts I linked in my Worth the Read post was by a Linked in Influencer. 
I thought it was right to tell the author of a post and acknowledge it was a good post and I recommend reading it. ...
I read the posts shared with me on LinkedIn, share them and recommend on them, and this is the result. I was trying to contribute and be an active LinkIn member. I thought LinkIn was about networking, job opportunities and interacting. I will not share again. 
Having said that, thank you ____ for your assistance. Am I to assume you are taking the restriction off of my account."

In the end I was told they would take the "High Restriction" off my LinkedIn account if I agree to adhere to the rules, and given a link to said rules. After four emails the response was the following. Talk about missing the point, or probably more accurately not caring.
"Hi Cathy,
 Thanks for complying and adhering with our policies. The restriction has been lifted from your account.
 Also, if you're interested in learning more about protecting your privacy and keeping your information safe online, I highly recommend checking out our Safety Center:

I get that I am not an "influencer" and just one little person. But who knows who I know, or what I may become? I would share an excellent post about that but we all know what happened last time. So now I do not check LinkedIn nor do I like share or comment there anymore. 

LinkedIn personally I think you are clued out.

No links this week, but I am hoping that my post gives you food for thought, and was worth the read. 

Yep, just me Cathy thinking about what I think is worth the read. 

Note: I have not been compensated in anyway for this post. All opinions are my own, and the purpose of this post is merely to share with my readers posts and articles I find interesting.


  1. Hi Cathy,
    Thanks for sharing, it's sad to think that people respond without doing a review. I personally had joined Linkedin awhile ago but rarely sign in as I have found it to be fairly impersonal.

  2. Thanks for the head's up, Cathy! I agree, Linkedin should have dug into the situationore before making a decision the matter, and they should have given you a better explaination as why they took this ciurse of action with you.