LinkedIn has some 277 million users in the entire world, which is great for a professional social network, but apparently not nearly enough to appease the company that has resorted to some questionable techniques to appear larger.
Countless users are complaining about one big issue that the service has – the fact that people in their contacts list appear as members of the platform, when, in fact, they’re not.
One user complained on Google+ that he had sent a connection request to an old acquaintance, but that he later found out that he didn’t actually have a LinkedIn account. A quick investigation of the issue revealed that, most likely, the network went through this individual’s email contacts and displayed the forementioned person as active member.
There’s no more evidence to this than the fact that one of the contacts that LinkedIn was suggesting he add to his network was, in fact, his aunt, who had passed away and who was not an Internet user in any way, let alone LinkedIn.
Basically, he points out, as he’s backed by many other users, that LinkedIn is misrepresenting people who have an account to entice users. The system is quite simple. You are made to believe that your high school friend has an account, so you send a connection request. In turn, that person receives an email saying you’re looking for them on LinkedIn.
This may end up with LinkedIn boosting its user base, which, in the end, seems to be the company’s desire.
Of course, LinkedIn isn't the only network to use this little trick, so you may want to be more careful about which tools you let in to your email address book.