Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Why Linkedin Worries Me . . . part 2

Since I wrote the last post, two things have happened.  The first is that more people I don't know have endorsed me for my skills and expertise, of which they have no personal knowledge.

The second is that I have received an email from someone asking me to endorse him.  Now, I've received a few requests of this sort in the past and have replied to say that, as I don't know the writer, I'm unable to.  But this latest email was more than just a request.  It was headed "LinkedIn endorsements offer more credibility behind skill sets" which, as I pointed out in my last post, I am starting seriously to doubt.  It began by thanking me for being part of the sender's network on Linkedin and then gave a list of "Tips about How Linkedin Endorsements can Help You and Me".

Tip 3 stated "It's important to get endorsements, as anyone looking at your profile and comparing you to your competition will see them.  Endorsements create an instant overview that is easy to compare with your competition.  Obviously, you want to look the best."  And, according to tip 4, if I were to endorse him, his connections would see a link to my profile when looking at his profile and this would mean that "In SEO it will rank your profile when my profile has been ranked" (actually he put "when my profile is been raked" - a reminder that one should always read through an email before sending it).

The email concluded with a very long list of skills that the sender considers himself to possess, and a request that I spend at least five minutes endorsing those skills!  Needless to say, I did not endorse any of them.  For all I know, he might be very good in all the areas that he lists . . . but, equally, he might be the only person who thinks so.

I'm tempted to try a little experiment . . . to list one of my skills as ballet dancing (something I've never done in my life), and to see how many people I can get to endorse me!  But, on a more serious note, I'm wondering why there's been this sudden rush of endorsements and requests for endorsement.  Is there someone teaching that this is a good way to get oneself noticed?   Strangely enough, Linkedin seems to have no ruling about endorsements, saying only that "Skill endorsements are a way to endorse your 1st degree connections' skills and expertise with one click."  Admittedly, it does suggest that one should only link directly to people one knows personally (but open networking rides roughshod over that).  So is it, perhaps, time for Linkedin to put its house in order and decide exactly what it is that it's offering because, at the moment, I'm finding it hard to understand.

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