Excuse me… were just friends

The amount of spam mail generated from Linkedin recently has become infuriating. Why people don’t “get it” , the simple concept that Linkedin is a “Social Networking” platform, just boggles my mind. Networking people…. that is the intention.

It seems as if every day I get several invites to join someones millionairre club or to check out incredible investment opportunities or to download some fantastic new e-book that will turn my life around. Guess what people, I don’t even know your name let alone who you are…. do you think I am really going to click on your link? I suppose the real question is – Do others actually click these links? Can someone be that foolish?

The biggest annoying factor is that many of these unsolicted email spammers do not supply an unsubscribe option. I recently asked someone on Linkedin, “how do you know me and who asked you to solicit me“? The response I got set off an online sparring match that spilled into the social streams. I was told – “You asked to connect to me on Linkedin”. This person was upset about the fact that I even challenged their thought of shamelessly soliciting me. It was as though they were given a pass to do so.

Oh really? First of all, I didn’t ask this person to connect, they in fact asked me to connect. And most importantly, I attempted to explain that there is a huge difference between connecting for networking purposes and connecting to get spammed.

Listen up people – Just because we are connected on Linkedin does not give you a license to relentlessly solicit your products. There is another company, who touts themselves as a major commercial office reseller, that continues to send me email solicitations regarding hundreds of thousands of square feet available at deeply discounted prices. Now when I am talking discounted prices, they are still in the hundreds of millions of dollars. I am not a prospect. I am not even close to being a prospect! please… just stop!

This particular spammer does in fact have an unsubscribe button. I have hit that button now 22 times. It doesn’t work. I keep getting back a message that says, “we can’t find your email address in our database“. Ok… then how in the heck am I still getting your shameless and unauthorized self promotions? Million dollar company and they don’t get how to run an email campaign? hmmmmmm…..

In the past I have simply deleted these types of solicitations but it seems to have hit an epic amount of times a week I now receive them and I have reached my tipping point. I now unsubscribe, delete and announce to my followers and connections who these people are after several attempts to unsubscribe. The truly amazing thing to me is how these people believe they are actually providing a service. Don’t the intended prospects see through this garbage?

Social Networking is about one thing —   Social Networking. Period! End of story. There is no room for shameless self promotion on the Linkedin platform. If you are going to do it, at least run it down the main stream and not personalized with openers like, “hey friend”. I ain’t your friend… Never was, Never will be. If I could only find a button that would………

Ok…. venting is all done. Would love to hear everyone’s comments.

7 Responses

  1. Brenna DeLeo
    Brenna DeLeo September 7, 2011 at 12:02 pm | | Reply

    I completely agree. I’m not a fan of the mass emails in LinkedIn or any other social platform for that matter.

    I do understand reaching out to people you actually have a relationship with, if the topic is relevant to them. ex. my company released a new social aggregator that I thought was really cool so I reached out to a few people who I thought might be interested. However, I would no way spam my entire contact list because, as you mentioned in your post, everything is not relevant to everyone, it just becomes inappropriate.

    I do believe in not accepting everyone as a connection on LinkedIn though. I think different social networks are used for different reasons and LinkedIn is for people I already have a relationship with. Whether it be someone I’ve met at a conference or a client, I just have to know them. I don’t think it’s a place for first handshakes, Twitter is a much better platform for that.

  2. Sue Reddel
    Sue Reddel September 7, 2011 at 12:53 pm | | Reply

    Couldn’t agree with you more. I’ve also “connected” with people that didn’t honestly describe what they did. They said they wanted to connect to discuss something they clearly know I would be interested in based on my profile. I actually had a guy say he wanted to discuss how I made the transition to teaching from my corporate position. Since I’m typically happy to chat with anyone that is considering the same change I gladly set up a time to chat. Once we connected via phone he quickly wanted to get my opinion on educational software he was selling – which wasn’t even mentioned in his profile. He wanted my contacts at the university. Needless to say I cut the conversation short and un-connected with him on LinkedIn. I am now very leery of who I connect with on LinkedIn.

  3. Allen Mireles
    Allen Mireles September 8, 2011 at 5:07 am | | Reply

    You’ve hit on a sore point with this post. I dread visiting my LinkedIn email because it is so loaded with spammy self-promotional emails. I also have noticed a growing number of people (or bots) on LinkedIn with weird un-names. You know like, Luxury Spa for You instead of Joe Smith. Completely uninterested in networking with the Spa character, even if they are for real and offer fantastic services.

    Grrr,,,

  4. Denise
    Denise September 10, 2011 at 4:19 pm | | Reply

    Amen Lewis!!! I use Linkedin for people I have met and know, or have had many interactions forming a relationship. I detest spam on all social media or networking venues… Thank You for venting for the rest of us! :)

  5. Halley
    Halley November 29, 2011 at 5:58 pm | | Reply

    Couldn’t agree with you more. I’ve also “connected” with people that didn’t honestly describe what they did. They said they wanted to connect to discuss something they clearly know I would be interested in based on my profile. I actually had a guy say he wanted to discuss how I made the transition to teaching from my corporate position. Since I’m typically happy to chat with anyone that is considering the same change I gladly set up a time to chat. Once we connected via phone he quickly wanted to get my opinion on educational software he was selling – which wasn’t even mentioned in his profile. He wanted my contacts at the university. Needless to say I cut the conversation short and un-connected with him on LinkedIn. I am now very leery of who I connect with on LinkedIn.
    +1

  6. Vicki Davis
    Vicki Davis December 6, 2011 at 3:53 pm | | Reply

    I have a horrible problem with LInked in and what they did to me. Last week I was “cleaning up” my account and connected with gmail to look for users already on linked in. It found 400 something people and I was like No way – so I unchecked tons of them got it down to about 100 I actually know.

    Well, not only did it invite people I unchecked but also some that WERE NOT On the list like my 10 year old son and about 20 of the unique emails that disqus creates when I moderate my blog! So, now I have to remove all the reminders. I’ve gone in linked in to try to close all open requests from me. It went through another email that I didn’t see anything from and even invited a retired aunt.

    I spent an hour going through those and somehow either there is a screen I missed in the process, the way that it had me forwarding through was skipping some names for me to uncheck, or it invited people in my contact list without my permission.

    Bottom line – lots of the people WEREN’T on linked in and didn’t need an invitation.

    I was pretty ticked off because now I look like a spammer. This story is being told to say that there is something funny going on with the “scan my email” feature on the site. I’m tired of apologizing and I’m not that much of a social media noob that I totally muffed this thing. I know how it works.

    Anyway, when the people I don’t know that I didn’t invite contact me and ask if they know me -I’ve responded honestly that somehow I invited them but didn’t mean to – I don’t recall checking their name.

    There is something up. I know of several good people who are stuck looking like spammers and we can’t all be dumb.

    I want to connect with people I know and have an apology going up on my blog tomorrow for how spammy I look. I just think everybody is talking about this and something is up!

  7. Bruce Sallan
    Bruce Sallan December 6, 2011 at 10:36 pm | | Reply

    Gee, Lewis, how do you really feel?

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