Monday, January 21, 2008

He'p me, he'p me!

Ok, I’m an old guy. Not terribly hip. I don’t have an IPod or a Palm Pilot (my friend ace photographer Ira Wexler once said that this term sounded like it had something vaguely to do with masturbation), and I don’t know how to use half of the features on my cell phone.

I carry a low-tech small notebook and pen around to remind myself of stuff and jot down ideas, I don’t have a MySpace page and don’t really use LinkedIn.

Pathetic, right?

Ok, so there it is. But here’s my problem. What is the proper etiquette regarding LinkedIn invitations? I always accept, because so far, everybody who has sent me one is somebody I like or want to stay in touch with somehow. But last week one came from a former business contact with whom I had only a fleeting and casual relationship. About eight years ago.

I have no interest in being in this guy’s network, so I just ignored it. And today, I got a reminder. I don’t want to be rude and “Decline”, but I don’t want to be there, either. What to do? What to do? Is there a polite way out of this? What is the protocol? What's my obligation here? I mean, I don't want to be everybody's friend.

You know, I think LinkedIn is probably a terrific business networking tool. But at the same time, I think some people collect contacts like scalps. Maybe it’s a “look how many people I know” kind of thing. I don’t know. But I know I don’t want to be in this guy’s extended network.

Somebody help this ignorant boy out.

Life used to be so simple.


Life Out of Bounds said...

If you reject or turn down an invitation on Linkedin, the person at the other end is not notified. They don't suddenly receive a "Let's just be friends" or "It's not you, it's me" type of message. So really, the best thing to do is just go ahead and decline.

If nothing else, you get to have that afterschool-special-true-to-yourself feeling at the end of the day.

Technology does not have to be scary. Remember how afraid you were of blogs at one time?

PS. Thanks for not rejecting my network invite

Make the logo bigger said...

I accept, then ignore.


I think a lot of people whether on Twitter, Linked, etc., generally follow or accept out of politeness but can’t possibly talk to all of them. I know I can’t.

Unless they have a disproportionate amount of people they follow vs. people following them, then I might ignore.