Edo the Reliable ("Amin")

Dear LinkedIn, Where’s The Hide Button

In Social Networks on March 19, 2010 at 1:45 pm

These days, the first thing you see when you log in to your LinkedIn account, is a Facebook-like “network updates” feed. LinkedIn now added Facebook-y, Wave-y comment threads, and it already imports Twitter feeds. LinkedIn’s strategy is a Plaxo-like “become the hub”.

However, becoming a hub means more responsibilities. Unlike Facebook, LinkedIn’s feed does not have a “Hide User” feature. It does not offer any controls on the nonsense that can get displayed. The combination of rich Facebook-like feeds with poor Twitter-like controls can pose a problem. At least on the web – these issues are less apparent on iPhone screens, which have recently been on LinkedIn’s mind.


Curb Their Enthusiasm


But on the LinkedIn website, lacking spam-curbing features, it’s more noticeable to a member when those who bubble up and dominate the feed are the over-social, obnoxious, obsessive parts of the network. While you can limit your exposure in others’ feeds — you can’t remove others from your “network updates” except by completely removing them from your network.

That’s a tough choice that users shouldn’t be faced with.  Vouching for someone’s professionalism should not imply more than that. I might be proud of having someone in my 1st degree circle, yet be irritated to constantly have to look at their trivial, Facebooky tweets. The secret ingredient is scale. LinkedIn’s granularity in applying relationship scale is impressive; it should preserve the nuances of community relationships it already achieved as its differentiator, leverage and develop it. Relationships matter.

I don’t underestimate the challenge to LinkedIn’s platform here, and appreciate there is no easy solution within LinkedIn’s release schedule. However, until this is resolved with a LinkedIn “hide”-like feature, this opens the door to creatively spamming your LinkedIn friends. Use it wisely.

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  1. I agree with your observation. They are a differentiated player and the relative focus of the main page feed is an asset to be protected.

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