Do I know you?

BY J. CARLTON COLLINS, CPA

Q: All of a sudden I am unable to invite my friends to connect with me on LinkedIn unless I supply their email addresses. Yet my colleague is able to invite these same friends without supplying an email address. Can you explain what’s going on and tell me how to resolve this issue? Thank you.

A: LinkedIn’s official policy is to flag your account and lock down your invitations when five people reject your invitations using the IDK (I don’t know) flag. LinkedIn imposes this restriction on its users to reduce spamming. When this happens, LinkedIn sends you an InMail message notifying you that your account has been restricted, and you must supply the invitee’s correct email address to send future invitations. Further, if you continue to receive IDK flags, it can result in suspension of all invite privileges and, eventually, your entire LinkedIn account.

To determine if you have been IDK flagged and to see who flagged you, select Inbox from the LinkedIn main menu. Next, select Sent (under the Compose Message button) and click the Sent Invitations tab to display a listing of your prior invitations. The words Doesn’t know will appear next to those invitations that were rejected by your invitee using the IDK flag.

To rectify this problem, you can email LinkedIn’s customer support personnel at cs@linkedin.com. Be sure to send your request using the email address associated with your LinkedIn account, include your contact information, assure LinkedIn that you will not abuse invitations in the future, and ask customer support to remove the restrictions for sending invitations.

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