September 23, 2013

Which is more spammy — #LinkedIn or #Facebook?

At one time, it would have been easy to say Facebook.

But, starting with the crack cocaine of LinkedIn's "endorsements," especially when we're asked to endorse people who not only aren't in our network but are more than one step removed from people who ARE in our network, or so it seems when I'm asked to endorse people I'm  not even close to knowing, LinkedIn's closing the gap fast.

The clearly made-up nature of many of these skills, such as "storytelling" (what is that for, career politicians) only increases the height of my skeptical antennae.

Then there's this.

Not only is LinkedIn about as spammy as Facebook, it's apparently taking lessons on TOU-shifting and similar things:
On September 12, 2013, we published revised versions of our Privacy Policy and our User Agreement. Your continued use of LinkedIn means you agree to these revised documents, so please take a few minutes to read and understand them. Visit the LinkedIn blog to learn what these changes mean to you.
Really? Did you have this in 48-point bold type on or before Sept. 12? Of course not.

The why is because kids can now have LinkedIn accounts. Yeah, like the average 14-year-old is applying for a job via LinkedIn.

And, no, I'm not kidding. LinkedIn has lowered its age of usage to 14 as part of the privacy updates

It's all about the money. The "University Pages" are clearly an attempt to get more said universities to advertise to 14-18 year olds.

Great. And now, high school freshman can increase popularity contests by playing with LinkedIn's crack cocaine of endorsements.

I now have a poll up. Feel free to vote. 

And, Twitter's not in the mix yet. But stay tuned.

A likely-overvalued IPO will mean, as with Fraudbook, the need for more revenue streams. That means more ads, or more marketing of Twitter. Plus, with using Twitter as my log-in for Disqus since, per a friend of mine, OpenID has sadly fallen by the wayside, means I'm getting all sorts of commercial spam tweets. I've just been blocking them so far, but I'm soon going to start reporting them as spam. 

And, speak of the devil, three days after I write this, LinkedIn spams me on Twitter. And, I reported you as spam, I didn't just block you. 

Oct. 24, 2013: LinkedIn's latest spamminess? This idea of intruding into your personal email flow. 


Per the first comment below, re LinkedIn, I become part of the solution and avoid remaining a passive part of the problem by refusing to accept more endorsements and refusing to pass them out. As a LinkedIn account is semi-de rigeur with many larger companies, at least, I'm not going to delete my account. But I'm not going to expand it any further. Like Facebook, I think we should also be wary about how much personal information we put on LinkedIn. 

And, so I have just done. 


Actually, Twitter, with its laughably wrong suggestions on whom to "follow" (Barack Obama? When I know the Green Party has to have a Twitter account? Katy Perry? When I am not even sure what she's been in? Oops, she's not even an actress.) Seriously. Twitter has never suggested the St. Louis Cardinals' feed, or an individual Cardinal player. It's never suggested, besides the Green Party, say, Dennis Kucinich.

And, doorknob help us when it launches its IPO. 

And speaking of that devil, it just took the lid off that IPO.


Lorraine said...

I don't think lowering a website's minimum age would automatically make the website spammier.

I'm not a member of LinkedIn, but I've visited it a few times. I'm a member of Facebook, but don't visit often. I find Facebook ad-blocking to be fairly easy (though not as easy as Twitter, and I did have to revise my script yesterday).

My understanding is that LinkedIn offers a paid-for "premium" version, without which you're pretty limited in what you can see on the site. The conventional wisdom is that free-as-in-beer has to be paid for somehow, and that somehow is inevitably spamminess. That being the case, if I have two websites that are about equally spammy in look-and-feel, and one offers paid accounts, that fact is the tie-breaker. If Site 1 and Site 2 are equivalent on Factor A (perceived spamminess) and Site 1 is inferior to Site 2 on Factor B (asking for money) then Site 2 "pareto dominates" Site 1.

I've noticed (in the last 12 months or so) dramatically more LinkedIn in search results, which suggests to me that LinkedIn has been upping its SEO game (and as far as I'm concerned, there's no such thing as white-hat SEO).

So, to answer your question, #LinkedIn appears spammier.

PS -- I didn't know OpenID was falling by the wayside. Do you mean by that that they're losing market share as a login engine, or that they're going out of business? Either way, it seems to be an Iron Law of Economics that a commercial website will not use a noncommercial authentication service, which is why Mozilla Persona probably won't catch on, either. Data mining is far more central to the business model than is advertising.

Gadfly said...

First, the OpenID issue. Anecdotally, not just to me but to a few non- to anti-commercial friends, OpenID is losing ground. You may well be right on the reasons why. Makes sense.

Second, on LinkedIn vs. Facebook, I agree. With FB Purity and other things, yes, a lot of FB's annoyances are controllable. Agreed also on the paid accounts.

Lowering the age doesn't automatically make it spammier, but, certainly, speaking of the for-profit world, the U. of Phoenix type folks will love direct advertising access to malleable 14-year-old minds.

And, spot-on on "no white hat SEO." I do believe LinkedIn is becoming more aggressive there. In fact, it's possible that those crack rocks of skills endorsements are part of that game.