My love-hate relationship with LinkedIn

Over the last few months I’ve seen a significant decrease in LinkedIn connection requests and a corresponding increase in Facebook friends.  It seems that Generation X is waking up to Facebook and may start nibbling on LinkedIn’s user base.  While these two sites serve very different purposes, they are still fighting for my online attention.

Here are some of ways I believe LinkedIn can update their site to become a more integrated part of my online life:

1. Make it easier to “friend” someone – I don’t know how many times I’ve had to go fishing through Outlook for  an email address to friend I know really well like my sister-in-law.

2. Better integration with other sites – Lifestreaming is coming to a laptop near you (See FriendFeed, Socialthing, etc) .  LinkedIn could take a lesson from Plaxo on how to connect with people’s lives.  It would be nice if I could easily import my blog posts, photos and other content into my LinkedIn profile.

3. Standardize status updates – Their 98 character status update is pretty short for people familiar with Facebook and Twitter.  It is also challenge to use a third party site like Hellotxt or PingFM to push your oversharing to LinkedIn.

4. Encourage greater use of their API – Much of the success of sites like Twitter can be attributed to the third-party applications that use the API to pull and add value to live data.

5. Better RSS feeds -It is nice to have LinkedIn feeds at all.  I can, however, imagine an infinite number of permutations for RSS feeds by company, region and education.

LinkedIn will continue to be a key part of the social media ecosystem.  I just wish it were more connected.  That is the point ofsocial media after after all?

Author: Frank Days

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2 Comments

  1. I was all ready to jump on your bandwagon here. I remember when “facebook vs linkedin” was a laughable matchup, but can’t deny that FB is serious business these days. But take a step back and look at the basis of your critique. You’re saying that LI is a lousy social network but your evidence is all the frills, not the meat. Linkedin should give more space for microdrivel updates, sure, but its really not a lifestreaming site, nor should it strive to be one. It’s a career site, it’s for finding employers and employees, and it’s well designed for that only.

    Here’s a different idea: Maybe LinkedIn should create a Facebook application, and stop trying (not very hard) to be Facebook.

    And while I’m at it, who’s the second badge on your “find me” list to the right, and who’s not on that list at all? Hmm…

  2. One thing I disagree with Limeduck on is that LI should not be a job search site. It’s just that the creators had no idea what they were creating and the customers just turned it into one. Why do we need another job finding site when that market is so saturated? Networking is an art form and it takes skill to do it well with strangers. Nobody networks with me on LI. All I ever get is job requests and it drives me nuts. With FB there is an implied understanding that it provides a more holistic view of one’s life and that insight makes me more apt to relate to and possibly hire somebody; much more than a resume that is probably more padded than the shoulders of a woman’s blazer from the 80’s.

    In the few short months I’ve aggressively been using FB I’ve gotten more leads and opportunities for my business than LI has ever provided. Given what LI turned into so many members are defensive and always saying to themselves “What do they want?”, which makes it so cold and unfriendly. FB is like that party where everyone is excited to see you and is so fun that you forgot that you were dreading going to the party in the first place.

    Giro

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  1. Five weeks after API ask, no love from LinkedIn - limeduck - [...] like further evidence to Tangyslice’s critque of LinkedIn as being not quite connected enough.  How likely is it that…

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