Opting Out of Linked In


I’ve always been a fan / avid user of LinkedIn, but I too was bothered by the problem of unwanted invitations from people I don’t know. And I’ve always especially hated to see that practice driving people like you, Scoble, et al., away from the tool.

Well, LinkedIn just made a major change in their policies regarding invitations. Basically, “five strikes and you’re out”. When people receive an invitation, they have the ability to click on a button that says, “I don’t know the sender”. If someone gets five such hits on invitations they’ve sent, their account gets automatically suspended.

This should virtually eliminate the practice of sending invitations to people you don’t know. It will make “open linkers” have to actually contact the person, introduce themselves, and make sure they’re amenable to receiving such a request - to actually communicate (wow - what a radical concept!) - before sending the LinkedIn invitation.

More details on my blog:

Someone asked why members would pay to use Linked In. I chose to pay an annual fee so that I can contact individuals directly, rather than going through my contacts and requesting an introduction (seems a bit burdonsome to me). Surpisingly, almost every stranger I have contacted in this way has responded to me in a very positive manner. If you want to know who is out there working on a specific issue, this is a great resource. The new answers feature is also interesting.

Linked In is only useful if you use it. I use it and I really like it.

According to LinkedIn Customer Service, you CAN opt out!

Question: I closed my LinkedIn account, but I still see my profile on the Internet. Why?

Answer: Although your LinkedIn account is closed immediately, it may take up to 72 hours for your public profile to be removed from the caches of internet search engines.

I guess it pays to be patient instead of blasting LinkedIn all over the Internet!

Funny how everyone signed up to Linkedin, and now no-one cares and wants out! I had to go through all the fields and insert bogus data to “close” my account.

If they’d made the whole thing free from the beginning it might have worked… but even then it’s a dull site with no action.

I just deactivated my facebook account – that’s how ahead of the times I am :slight_smile:

Thank you, I couldn’t find how to close my account. linkedin sucks

I use LinkedIn though don’t add new contacts as frequently as I probably should to get the most benefit. Personally, I’ve reconncted with past collegues through it and helped someone complete his MBA thesis. By introducing it some other friends, I’ve heard they reconnected with past colleagues as well and received some help on a project they were working on. I’m sure there are improvements to be made to the service, but after reading through some of these other folks’ comments, there seem to be more positive reactions than negative.

LinkedIn is proving very useful to me. I’ve done real business, reconnected with people I met at conferences etc. and have not had the chance to meet since. I’ve assisted colleagues with introductions and been assisted in return. I like it.

Like any system or service, this will only be a useful as you make it. The functionality of any tool is highly dependent on the operator of the tool. You could do this without Linkedin, but it simplifies the processes for you. Of course it does allow the owners of the system to easily do network analysis on you and everyone in the network. But, if you are not doing anything illegal, you should not have anything to worry about, unless you accept lots of invitations from people you don’t know who are doing something illegal; which goes back to those who have suggested you should only link with people you know.

Those of you you dont like linked in can leave and take your negative slant with you!!

What a sucky and stupid policy that you can’t delete your account and that you are SuckedIn to LinkedIn. Aaaagh! On to the bogus profile-filling-in… Yay, headhunters!!! ;-p

My personal experience with it has only been positive. I’d somewhat lost touch with a number of folks I worked with in the late 90s, and LinkedIn helped me reconnect with them – some of whom even came to me with work.

I “signed up” for this service as I was sent an “invitation” by a friend. I see now that the system has a feature where you type in your e-mail address and password, and it automatically sends invitations to all of your contacts in your e-mail list.

But I did not know that at the time. I thought my friend wanted me to join for personal reasons. I did not want to lose a friendship over this, so I signed up. No doubt she signed up for similar reasons (She works for a high tech company, and I see that a lot of her co-workers are on the site - perhaps they run it?).

I am semi-retired and really don’t want links or opportunities or headhunter calls or e-mails or whatever from linkedin. I just want to be left alone. I get way too much work as it is, and my biggest problem is turning away work, not trolling for more. Clients I have. You want 'em? Please take them.

I clicked on the “delete my account” and they send an e-mail that they will get back to me in 3 days or something. I do not do business with companies that have policies like this. If someone is deceitful from the get-go, don’t act all shocked when you are screwed down the road. Any relationship that starts with deceit can only go downhill. Honesty speaks volumes, and Linkedin is not being totally honest when they hook you into “joining”.

I left my profile mostly blank, but I am still receiving invitations from people I don’t know, and I am “linked” to 1,687 people I’ve never heard of.

This is sort of phoney. A real word-of-mouth referral is based on personal knowledge of that person, not some made-up relationship or phantom links.

The deal is that Linkedin advertises “11 million subscribers” but in reality, I suspect a lot of the “members” are like me, who signed up just to appease a friend (or so we thought) and not piss them off.

I strongly suspect the “positive” comments on this blog are from Linkedin employees.

Frankly, online social networking is a total waste of time. I’d rather being actually doing something with real people than playing games with a computer. FWIW.

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Their opting out is apparently improving, probably as a result of blogs like this (keep up the good work!). These internet companies will do whatever they can get away with unless someone holds their feet to the fire.

About 20 minutes after I sent in my “close my account” request, I received the following e-mail:

"Thank you for contacting LinkedIn Customer Service. We have removed your account and all associated information. Since your account is now closed, you will no longer receive emails through LinkedIn or be able to log into the LinkedIn system. You can reactivate your LinkedIn account by contacting Customer Service.


Suzy Jackson
Customer Service Representative"

Thank you Suzy. No questions asked, no harrassement, nothing. My account was closed IMMEDIATELY.

So they have improved this aspect of the service - quitting.

Oddly enough, when this was happening, I received a phone call from a client who wanted to refer someone to me. (Please No! Go Away!) The “old fashioned” method of networking operates pretty well, IMHO. Who needs a faked-up online version?


linkedin has been incredible for lining up sales meetings.

hopefully it stays that way for a while before it starts getting the same response you would get from firing off an email to someone requesting a meeting. this these days is merely treated as spam dure to the abuse by spammers.

The only benefit I get out of it is that I can pretend to have a lot of friends :slight_smile:

I have been on LI almost since the beginning. I have heard similar arguments over the years.

The bottom line is that LinkedIn is a tool - and unless you know how to use the tool, it isn’t going to do anything for you.

If you look at it as a way to gain industry knowledge (other than keeping your head in a book), becoming social with others in your field, and potentially finding the dream job, invest some time in it and see what it can do.

Oh, and to people who complain about getting the calls from headhunters: If you don’t want calls, don’t put your phone number in your profile! I never said I was a smart man, but that seems like a pretty simple way to prevent all those dreaded calls from people who want to offer you a job…

I was thinking of joining Linkedin but after reading the previous posts I’m not so sure. Can someone tell me if this would be a good place to
a) find old friends that I’ve lost contact with or
b) suppose I’ve just written a movie script or book, would this be a good place to find people who know where to reach a distributor, or a publisher or people willing to finance projects like these?

Why do all 500 of the Fortune 500 companies participate in such a “useless” service? I bet you guys are the same people that say monster.com doesn’t work. You just have to give it time people! It took 2 years, but I landed a great job with monster. Just had to refresh my profile from time to time.

I figure 20 years from now if the service still exists (and I think it will), I’ll have hundreds of contacts by then, and if I ever want to break away to do my own thing, I’ll have my own private network of potential employees to draw from, people that I personally know as well as people they know, for free.

I’m not seeing the “pyramid scheme” side of things. No one is trying to make any money here, except the host, and it hasn’t cost me anything except 5 minutes every few days to check my account. If it’s really that bad, change your email address to a fake one on the site and it’ll all go away…

They say never provide personal information or passwords…I just joined at the urging of a friend and the FIRST page i was directed to tried to scan my machine…THE SECOND page asked for my yahoo password so they could rip my address book. Not going to happen.

As for Trainator’s 08/15/07 comment that all Fortune 500 companies participate…where in the hell did you get that info? I’ll put up $10,000 to anyone that can document that all 500 companies actively support their employees joining this crap site on company time. What a crock. You work for linkedin, right? Or you’re really naive.

Sorry but this is an obvious phishing site and a waste of my time…I’m pissed I even signed up.

Entonces, adios amigos!


I just signed up, searched for contacts, and basically only found 2 people I actually know in relatively recent years and professional connections, neither of which I really want to talk to again. I’d have to pay to upgrade my account to contact them, when I could just use a little thing called email to do it. Linked In stikes me as just another human resources circle jerk and fake jobs database. Maybe it’s great for HR-types who have to get responses from large numbers of real people for fake job postings, but for those of us actually looking for real connections to the actual decision makers (rather than HR BS’ers), it’s a joke. Delete.