If You Use LinkedIn, This Is the Dark Side of the Platform
A female thought leader with 700,000 followers gave me a behind-the-scenes look at LinkedIn.
I accidentally became the LinkedIn police.
A friend of mine was sharing videos daily on LinkedIn that weren’t hers. The credit for the video was typically something like “credit: whatsapp message a friend sent.”
She’s a bright light in a dark world right now. Her posts lift me up. I didn’t want to see her get banned from LinkedIn for sharing videos, as if they were hers, from famous news outlets.
I dropped her a short message on LinkedIn. As I suspected, she had no idea there was any problem. What happened next took me by surprise.
She replied to my message with a wave of emotion. She was ready to give up on LinkedIn. I could see the dark subtleties of possible suicidal thoughts. It scared the shit out of me, and simultaneously woke me up.
There is a dark side to LinkedIn. Here’s a behind the scenes look.
Womanizing Is a Thing
As a man, I had no idea. I even had to google the phrase womanizing to refresh my memory on what it was.
She told me that her and many other women had experienced womanizing on LinkedIn. They would develop a community around their content, using a group chat like WhatsApp, and then have it turn into something else.
Men would pretend to make them feel good and leave nice comments on their LinkedIn posts to get their attention. Then they would try and do anything to meet up with them in person so they could, hopefully, get them in bed.
I spoke to two other female content creators last year who told me something similar. They said they fielded daily messages from guys telling them they looked hot and asking if they were single. I had no idea LinkedIn had this sort of behavior — it’s supposed to be a professional networking app after all.
My understanding of LinkedIn was that you treat the opposite sex the same way you would in an office environment. It turns out people can morph into different human beings when they hide behind an encrypted group chat.