Customer service said it was a "known issue". My friends thought it was funny, but I'm stia little annoyed because it made me look sloppy.
Come on, LinkedIn, you have one job!
"Congrats on your new role !" - No, dude, I got the promotion a year ago, it's just that I am now looking to jump ship so I updated my Linkedin
I'm not saying I have the solution to this particular problem, but it's still kind of jarring to see these kinds of updates.
Does an obituary qualify as authentication that a person has died? I would have expected them to require a death certificate from the relevant government department. In Australia these are handled by state level, eg.
As security policies go, a setup that with a small chance of temporarily marking someone as dead when they're not seems better than one with no chance of marking someone as dead when they are.
Go here (https://www.linkedin.com/psettings/privacy) and turn off the setting labeled "Notifying connections when you're in the news". It's the last item in the first section. While you're still on that page, scroll to the bottom and enable two factor auth too.
I'm a lazy man and linkedin provided me a service.
PS. They've emailed me to say they'd reset my password, but aren't forcing me to do it as my cookie login or whatever still seems to be valid. "Heh".
It's not like Facebook where people can get access to personal photos or intimate conversations.
"Choose if we can show your profile information on your employer's pages" shows "Yes" but the text below "Hide my picture and profile information from showing up in this section of a job detail page?" says "Yes". So is it showing or hiding that?
I use LinkedIn for one reason and one reason only: to maximize my career options, both in scope and magnitude of opportunities. While I'm happily employed, I learned long ago that if you're not spending a few hours a month thinking about other career opportunities, you're hurting yourself in the long run. LinkedIn is a great platform to stay on top of that several-hours-per-month workflow.
For example, you see that an acquaintance has changed jobs....you send them a text...you grab coffee and talk about their career change....you gather the data point and keep your network primed. LinkedIn has made this process way easier to initiate than it used to be -- for me, at least.
So I really, really don't get why someone thought it would be a good idea to build an algorithm that assigns news stories to LinkedIn members. If I find myself in the news, and I think it's a cool story that makes me look good to potential employers, I can share it to my LinkedIn network. Hell, if I really like the article, I can embed it permanently on my profile.
Thank God I have a relatively rare first-last name combo that makes it very unlikely that something like what happened to Will Johnson could happen to me. That's straight-up nightmare material.
It's pretty boggling that LinkedIn would implement a feature that not only doesn't create value for its users, but actively poses a risk to their ongoing career development. The whole point of the site is essentially to serve as a cloud-mounted, data-rich business card. Why jeopardize that platform with crappy AI that spreads harmful falsehoods about members?
I can only imagine the explaining I would have to do if "WR Boyce indicted for child abuse" turned up on my LinkedIn feed.
And you're right, "Leroy Masochist" is a rare name combo.. ;)
I'm not trying to imply that you personally agree with LinkedIn's decision, by the way; just trying to get my head around why they think it makes sense.
As long as the cases where it goes wrong enough to be offensive and hurtful are rare enough, there's very little downside to them.
They could further limit it by location/region or companies mentioned to improve the quality but that may be overkill and reduce the number of notifications too much for their tastes.
Because pushing any kind of information at users is considered "engagement", which is a term that has been so thoroughly abused that it no longer holds any substantive meaning.
Remember that the business model here is "do the 80% that's easy and let the punters sort the rest out."
Anyone familiar with their subscription numbers? I suspect almost all of their accounts are products, not customers .
- LinkedIn sends the wrong guy's network a libelous e-mail
- Slate reports on said wrongdoing and has to issue corrections about the details 
- Turns out the author is a writer with a play to hawk 
- And the original 'White Supremacist' gets still more press than most of us want he and his organization to receive.
It all represents everything that is wrong with the web in a single post.
From the article's footnotes:
 *Correction, May 25, 2016: This article originally misspelled David Sacks’ last name. It also misstated that his birthday party cost $125 million. It took place in a house then being sold for $125 million. (Return.)
 Will Johnson is a teacher and writer based in New York City. His newest play, Blue Balls, will premiere at the Labute New Theater Festival in St. Louis this July.
The top William Johnson on my LinkedIn page is black. I wonder if the algorithm cared about the race of the guy in the photo before sending out the mail. In some ways that would be even worse.
I think they now ask recipients of new endorsements to confirm before they're posted. So asking for a confirmation on something as potentially damaging as a news link should be the least they do here -- and the work would be trivial (in the mathematical sense).
Kind of ironic, in an article about accidental identification.
This guy would never not be in the news!
Seriously? People expecting to be able to use a field they reserved using the city's official reservation system is "arrogance"?
If anyone is at fault for that incident it's the city for not getting more input from community, or subsequently not communicating the changes.
But this article is a good reminder that there are folks who don't like property rights when the wrong people have them.
Making it available only to people who can afford to pay is very sad.
> I don’t expect much from companies like LinkedIn, but when their incompetence makes our lives more difficult, they could at least pretend to care a little more.
This had the potential to do a lot more harm than just making his life "more difficult".
Maybe the European "right to be forgotten" has something to it after all...
I recommend this to everybody.
I'm just as annoyed at companies that don't bother with any kind of email confirmation click-through before sharing personal information though. I even frequently get one-click links to edit people's profiles with all their personal details.
If it includes a phone number I send them a polite text and ask them to be more careful when typing in their email address. I figure a little stranger danger fear might help motivate them to stop signing me up to be spammed.
OTOH I'm seriously considering leaving behind my many years old GMail at this point. I really only use it as an identity service for other site's logins 99% of the time. I just don't know what the options are and I don't feel like signing up for something that might not be around next year.
For instance, a friend of mine has a somewhat uncommon name. Unfortunately, there's another guy (I think there's only one) on Facebook with the same name who has a borderline racist cartoon as his profile picture. Guess which one comes up first when you search on my friend's name.
All the more dangerous if you can't find out someone is a white supremacist because they've politely asked to have the internet scrubbed all the terrible things they've done.
If said nanny said something 20 years ago and has since changed her views completely it is not really relevant - people's opinions change. If she has actually killed children is very very relevant.
Edit: Reading the entire article, it appears that is more or less what they said.
As if there wasn't enough of a reason to game them before.
And one of the fellows on my team worked for him before working for me.
Which is hilarious, but what was not so funny is that the perscriptions at Walgreens for our respective sons ended up tangled up and it took 45 minutes on the phone to straighten it out. After that, Walgreens began verifying your address.
Fortunately my story is mostly positive, unlike this poor fellow.
In this case though, I imagine they allocated far more resources towards positive correlations than exclusions, since they just want a way to get their name in front of you.
Other commenters have weighed in on this remark, which displays a shockingly childish view of economics. But if the author believes this, then his decision to use LinkedIn can not be rational, unless his goal is to lose.
I'm not on LinkedIn, but I get emails from them all the time. I assume it's just another cesspool and con job. This guy, at some point, decided to trust them with data about him. I'm finding it hard to feel very sympathetic.
It's all fine until you accidentally Nazificate people...
"The nature of profit is that you take more than you give,"
um, no, actually the nature of profit is that you generate more value than the worth of the inputs. Some (but not all) of that extra value is your reward for doing this. So in fact, the nature of profit is that you make more than you get.
I don't mind anti-capitalist diatribes every now and again, but getting the basics right is a must.
I love this forum because I find I can engage in meaningful discussion and actually get thought out replies, but it seems like any mention of LinkedIn, degrades into a cesspool of "LinkedIn only spams me!" (Uh... have you heard of email settings?) "LinkedIn is totally irrelevant, I don't understand why people still use it!" (Uh... okay, not everyone has a well paying, highly demanded tech job) "LinkedIn is literally satan. (Uh... okay no argument).
I'm all for constructive discussion about the engineering mistakes or product decisions behind this, but it just seems like its repeatedly the same inane comments about how "useless" LinkedIn is. It seems like stuff like this is always spun into a story about how evil or incompetent a corporation is, but I feel like we tend to forget that at the end of the day, behind these products are simply engineers trying their best to create tools and products that they think add value. (FYI: This email comes from a startup LinkedIn acquired called Newsle.)
(disclaimer: I work for LinkedIn)
If the best argument for your product is that people literally have to use it to get by, that's not something to be proud of.
I've had no problem unsubscribing (even as an employee, I'll admit a lot of these emails are not useful to me). The volume of email I receive from LinkedIn, even before I unsubscribed, was much less compared to what I get from Hipmunk or Airbnb. But I don't complain about that in a public forum, because I realize I can unsubscribe, and it's a minor nuisance. (Also, not to bash Airbnb, but I'm a host and I really want to unsubscribe from receiving emails when a guest messsages me, but I can't find the option anywhere!)
It's not my job to convince you to like LinkedIn, but I want to make it clear that our engineers are not in the market of "dark patterns" or whatever you want to spin it as. I will eagerly forward any feedback you have to the engineers who work on email/privacy settings.
Since then, you've added one called "Jobs and Opportunities", and it's switched on. This has happened before. Of course your company is aware it's doing this, but it would be bad for business if you never sent e-mail to people just because they unsubscribed, wouldn't it.
It's great that you had me check because now I have solid evidence of the "adding new categories that are automatically opted-in" behavior.
How often do you expect me to log in to LinkedIn, a service that I hate, and remind it that I really don't want its spam?
To avoid LinkedIn from sending out these dreadful 'In the news' emails, I had to mouse over 'account', then click 'Manage Privacy Settings'. Then you don't actually get privacy settings, but you get 'Account' (go figure.) So you have to click on 'Privacy' again. Then you get 16 different privacy related options. You need to click on 'Change' on "Notifying connections when you're in the news" and click on 'Yes'.
And then you need to review all other 15 settings to make sure they don't do anything nefarious as well, if you're lucky.
Very straightforward, really.
Nothing LinkedIn does adds any value to anything. It's like the buzzfeed of social networks. If a constant barrage of clueless recruiters doesn't drive people away, it's the insane "recommendation" engine that gets people who have never touched a line of code to recommend me for Ruby on Rails (I don't even know Ruby).
No matter how many times I told LinkedIn to stop emailing me, they always thought up new features to notify me for (and, of course, enabled them by default).
The entire app is a toxic spamfest. I closed my account long ago and I have NEVER looked back.
They're just going to stay in a state of limbo, doing stupid things like this (I bet this 'product' has a whole Product team behind it), getting presumably half of their userbase pwned (makes you wonder if Yahoo ever experienced that) and doing whatever they can to milk their resource/site for new revenue.
I don't think anybody can suggest a decent way for them to keep growing (in numbers and revenue) without some element of sleaziness involved, because they've probably attempted those sleazy strategies already.
Sadly though, like so many proponents here say, LinkedIn has become the monopoly in the professional networking market. So we're all stuck with a shit site that makes privacy-related matters opt-in and nothing can really be done about it (suggesting that a "better linkedin" be started isn't exactly an option either), but we all need it to find better jobs or grow our networks.
I bet this product was done by an intern who's no longer there, and lots of people at LI don't even know it exists until someone complains about it.
It sounds like a database call somewhere has a cardinality bug, or that they search purely by name instead of some unique identifier.
I'd be interested to see this litigated; I'm hoping the latter, because otherwise I expect the rate of algorithmic defamation to increase to rather intolerable levels in the not-to-distant future.
Honestly I would just close my LinkedIn account but being in the technology industry it seems almost impossible to escape it if you want to have a career. Yes you don't need it but not having it makes applying for jobs, having people find you, and even you finding jobs all more difficult.
You aren't their "product", you are one of very many suppliers, each of which provides a very small quantity of the product they are reselling.
Which is not to say your general point is wrong, but LinkedIn and similar firms aren't in the slave trade.
It's just a generalization that people use to describe a technology company that essentially requires users to bring value to a company's paying customers.
I wish that they had been sued in this case. There's nothing like losing lots of money on lawyers and damages to drive positive change in most large companies. Pity it has to be that way, but it was a calculated risk that nobody would have their reputation harmed by this dodgy algorithm.
Is sending out a incorrect and reputation-damaging statement better if done by an dumb algorithm or by a self-absorbed human?
But you don't even need that. If you've ever searched Facebook for a name, surely you know that most names are not unique identifiers.
I wouldn't have shared the article with anyone but all of my LinkedIn connections got pinged with the article. The CTO of npm even called out the article on Twitter. Super embarrassing.
He tries to take it in stride and not let it affect him.
Both of these companies very clearly run their own ad networks and sell people's attention and time, not their data. Why is this completely inaccurate claim so often repeated? Because it's catchy?
Getting angry at how Google and Facebook make money is like getting angry at a cable company for showing commercials. It's not their fault that people watch so much horrible television, nor is it LinkedIn's fault that the author continues to use their horrible site.
If I run a pizza parlor, and somebody describes my restaurant as "selling flour, water and cheese", should I loudly object "No, in fact I take those ingredients and process them into something else that I sell!"
I think a more apt analogy would be somebody describing the pizza restaurant as "selling an insult to Italian culture". The sale of a culture seems morally objectionable, and the statement is emotionally charged.
This is an excellent argument for prohibiting the existence of companies, or any commercial transactions at all.
The nature of profit is that you make more than you spend.
But that does not mean you take more than you give - value is also created in the exchange (or at least it should be).
(Maybe that is what you're pointing out, reductio ad absurdum? I'm not sure.)
I was going to provide that as further text to my original comment, but thought it would be more effective to let the quote speak for itself.
Guess not. :/
Regardless, linkedin's customers are obviously not the majority of its users.
One party values money (or data, etc) more than the time/materials/end products and the other party values those end products more than the cash (or privacy, etc): the trade happens. Both parties are ahead of where they started.
This doesn't mean you're always happy with the terms, but it does mean that you're coming out ahead on the deal. If you are willing to do a deal where you know you the other party is coming out ahead and you're not: you're just an idiot.
I understand why this is offensive, but really?
Especially if your professional contacts weren't people that worked in tech that could spot a shitty algorithm from a mile off
actually it's linkedin, so I'd probably delete the email without reading it and maybe email them when someone asked me about it later.
Well, because (but for the arguable effect of the disclaimer about the algorithm) its clearly libelous, and lots of corporations are very loathe to respond to non-paying user, but more prone to respond if there is a possibility of legal action and associated negative publicity.
If someone could possibly confuse me for a white supremacist Donald Trump delegate then either 1) that person isn't trying very hard and I probably don't want to work with them or 2) I need to take a serious look at my life choices
i.e. some of his connections had contacted him.