John Y’s Musings from the Middle: A LinkedIn Delusion

My delusion of getting LinkedIn attention and an apology.

I like using LinkedIn. It’s a useful and efficient business networking social media tool, in my opinion.

And so I was amused at first, then overjoyed, and ultimately circumspect a few weeks ago when it began raining LinkedIn “acceptances” in my email box.

I knew over the years I had requested a number of LinkedIn connections that had gone un-responded to. And I wondered why this or that person may not have “confirmed” me.

Was it something I said? Did I remind them of someone they dislike? Or am I the person they disliked–and kept others who reminded them of me from being “confirmed” on


I just didn’t know.

It started with a trickle. First two, then four, then nine, then 14 LinkedIn confirmations –all in the space of a few hours one day.

jyb_musings“Well, what do you know?” I thought to myself. “I feel I hit the social media jackpot. I guess all those people who never responded are all finally coming around. And at nearly the same time.” Which seemed odd….but the thought was replaced quickly with the self-serving, “Well, it’s about time.”

And then I began wondering “Why now?” Was it the ad in the airport just breaking through. Was there some effort at LinkedIn to end the moratorium on people who had requested to be linked but were in the “questionable” category?

But before I could think through that remote possibility here came 10 more confirmations. And then another five and another seven.

“What the heck?” I thought to myself.

By the end of the day I had lost count. I had at least 300 new LinkedIn connections. All in one afternoon. The likelihood they were all coincidentally people I had requested but hadn’t yet decided until today seemed not only unlikely —but downright delusional.

And then I got an inkling. A few friends who are more colleagues and acquaintances began asking “Did you mean to ‘Link’ to me the other day on LinkedIn?”

I checked my LinkedIn account. By the end of day two I had about 600 new LinkedIn connections. If this trend kept up, I would soon be closing in on Richard Branson of Virgin airlines as the most linked to member of the social media site. I began to wonder if Mr Branson (well, “Richard” now to me) had experienced a similar dramatic surge like mine.

And I realized, at last, it wasn’t a sudden burst in my popularity or people coincidentally seeing the value of linking to me on a social media site. No, something far less impressive and a great deal more humiliating. I had inadvertantly “blast requested” LinkedIn connections from every single person whose email address I had in my Outlook account that could be found on LinkedIn (that wasn’t already connected to me).

Of course, this last and more plausible explanation is a little unsettling and embarrassing. I would like to apologize to everyone I contacted and also thank those that are now “linked” to me.

I think.

I actually want to hold off on a formal apology (and thank you) until I can be sure.
I’d like to hold on ….for just one more night….the convoluted idea that finally, at last, all the people who had gone silent to my LinkedIn requests saw the error of their ways and rose up to link to me. Simultaneously. All in a matter of just a few hours.

I may be able to stretch it out for two more days and nights with this pleasant delusion.

So please be patient waiting for me to get back with that formal apology.

Oops. Gotta go. Just got 12 more new “confirms” on LinkedIn.

“It’s about time!”


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