Does LinkedIn Condone Indifference to Plagiarism Within Its Ranks?

Copy of email to LI Executive Editor, Dan Roth

Daniel Roth, Executive Editor
LinkedIn

Dear Mr. Roth:

I am writing to you as a long-time member of LinkedIn and a staunch supporter of LI’s potential to become the world’s premiere digital self-publishing platform — notwithstanding my occasional foray into criticism of what LI does and the directions it takes.

Please understand that this is a friendly request for you to review a recent occurrence that, I believe, could possibly besmirch LinkedIn’s reputation.

Yesterday a post was published by one of your employees, and featured in Pulse-LinkedIn Tips. This article is exceedingly close in title — and to an extent in content — to a popular post published by LI author Milos Djukic some 14 months ago. Dr Djukic’s article has been widely circulated and complimented, and Dr. Djukic enjoys a high reputation as one of LinkedIn’s better “independent” authors.

Having run across your employee’s article, I politely brought to the recent author’s attention, the similarity of title and content to Djukic’s article published 14 months previous. In the spirit of writer-to-writer courtesy, and because she does appear to be an LI editorial employee who of all people should be ultra-sensitive to such issues, asked that she consider changing at least the title of her post.

Unfortunately, with no response from your employee, my remarks — which were neither impolite, nor extreme in any way — were summarily deleted from the comment thread. Thinking this deletion might have been in error, I re-posted a similar request today, only to find that these latter remarks have also been removed without answer.

While this might understandable, if not acceptable, in the case of an ordinary member, in a member-to-member disagreement, I respectfully submit to you that such is not in the case when a LinkedIn employee associated with the editorial staff is involved. Even more so, when a possibility of plagiarism lurks in the shadows.

I am, therefore, appealing to you in your position as Executive Editor to do the right thing here, for the good of LinkedIn’s reputation and as a fellow writer to all of us who publish on LinkedIn.

Below are links to both articles in question. I am also including screen shots of my now arbitrarily deleted comments, as documentation of their unobjectionable nature and tone.

“The Agony and the Ecstasy of Writing on LinkedIn” by Danielle Restivo

“The Agony and the Ecstasy of Social Media Writing” by Milos Djukic

I ask only that you review these two articles, one of which was published on LinkedIn 14 months before the other, and give me your opinion as to whether you disagree me that there is, at least, reason for concern and a basis for the exercise of some kindness and writer-to-writer courtesy on the part of your editorial employee. I also ask that you review the remarks I posted to the comments thread on the recent article in question, and again just tell me honestly if you think they were in any way uncivil or “trollish”.

Finally, I — and I believe most writers who publish on LinkedI— would appreciate a statement of policy on plagiarism, both on the platform in general, and in your internal ranks.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Respectfully,

Phil Friedman
LinkedIn Member since 2012

About me, Phil Friedman: With 30 some years background in the marine industry, I’ve worn numerous hats — as a yacht designer, boatbuilder, marine operations and business manager, marine industry consultant, marine marketing and communications specialist, boating magazine writer and editor, yacht surveyor, and marine industry educator. I am also trained and experienced in interest-based negotiation and mediation. In a previous life, I taught logic and philosophy at university.

So that you understand I am not a crank, here are links to some other articles of mine:

“Conversation Isn’t Just Waiting Politely to Speak”

“LinkedIn Is a Highway, Not a Destination”

“Three Points of Advice to My Teenage Daughter”

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