It was hard to miss the big story this week in social media. But what might it mean for recruiters? Could the petition created by Anna R. on change.org force the professional social network to adopt a blocking feature? With close to 7K signatures thus far, there is a growing chorus looking to see LinkedIn do just that. Would this impact sourcing? Make it harder for recruiters to connect with candidates? That is after all one of the attractive aspects of being a LinkedIn member, being able to expand your professional network. The petition is not focused on recruiters, or invite spammers, but a much more sinister type of individual on the social platform.
While it's unclear how common stalking behavior is on LinkedIn, the topic of unwanted sexual attention on the site is an issue that's become more talked about in recent months.
In March, Forbes raised the issue of whether LinkedIn was the new hotbed for harassment, pointing out that there's even a Tumblr called SocialCreeps.com, which is dedicated to showcasing inappropriate messages sent via LinkedIn.
A blocking feature could have a potential ripple effect that could impact how LinkedIn connections are made, but that is if one is even implemented. LinkedIn offered a reply to the controversy;
Instead, we offer much more granular control for our members. There are a number a number of different ways for members to protect themselves and control exactly what parts of their profiles and activities are visible on LinkedIn. First and foremost, members can easily disconnect from anyone of their connections. We realize that may not be sufficient, so we allow members to customize their public profiles so that only what they want to have show up on search engines appears. We make it possible for members to adjust what appears out to their networks when they take action on LinkedIn - change their title or employer, share or post interesting content, etc. We let them limit who can see their photo if they have one on their profile. We let them control what people in their network can see on their profile. And we allow them to limit who can see their connections. All of these can be used to effectively minimize unwanted connections.
What do you think? Any thoughts on the petition itself? Have you encountered recruiting stalking activity on LinkedIn? How might a blocking feature impact the platform? I'm curious to see what RBC members think on this one.
LinkedIn Stalker Concerns Prompt Petition To Add Blocking Feature via Huffington Post
LinkedIn: Protect your users from stalkers and help keep victims safe via Change.org (the petition)