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not sure if any of you have seen this change over at
www.linkedin.com, but they've gone to a 'paid membership' model in
which only paying members can see their 'fourth degree connections -
for most 'free and nonpaying' users of the system, this has resulted
in a circa 70percent plus reduction in available 'network contacts' -
this is the part of the change that is upsetting users the most,
linkedin played the networking optics game with members and knew ages
ago that they were going to make that fourth degree vanish - totally
gamed the users into connecting to increase the overall value of the
system for the future paying members and in turn, screwed all those
who felt so deeply connected (imho)...also, now paying members can
have up to 10 messages 'en route' simultaneously (previously limited to four)
however, the system relies upon all of these core 'free members' to
forward requests from any/all members where they appear as nodes
along that critical path between contacts - so my idea: boycott
linkedin by demonstrating to 'free nonpaying members' who in fact
made the site what it is by showing them in some peter rabbit english
explanatory kinda way how if they 'completely stop forwarding
requests' within the system (just the nonpaying members), the whole
thing will be crippled...
some quick plain language ideas follow - i'm gonna be putting this on
my blog at www.passingnotes.com and so was hoping for anybody who
wishes to comment and have his/her statistical explanation included
to simply send along their own explanation and i'll provide full
quote and credit in one uber-blog entry:
"the system 'sees' the shortest path between contacts - my gut says
that if the free members are not forwarding requests, then linkedin
will simply rewrite the path direction to look first for 'paying
members' as the only path to follow (a defensive, worst case scenario
approach) - in turn, this will make the system rely entirely on paid
membership for utility but ONLY if free members stop forwarding
requests! does that make sense? basically, it's like forcing
linkedin's system to recalculate the critical path to contact between
any members out to the fourth degree in their system (as far as they
currently go), which involves (today) at least a few million members
who pay nothing to use the system - all messages are likely routing
through at least one or more 'free' members - and when the contact
flows to the fourth degree, likely two or more 'free' members are
touched when a message is 'en route'...but turn off that valve, and
the system must regenerate a critical path that bypasses 'free'
members and in turn, relies upon the ability for all paid members to
by my estimation, and i'm pulling this out of my arse (just so that
you know that!), fewer than 100k members will be paying over the
coming two to three months - like any company moving to paid
subscriptions, they've already figured out their own attrition
estimates - however, the odds that those 100k-ish members are
connected directly to one another within 'four degrees' in all
directions is quite unlikely (statistically unlikely i mean, again a
calculation that i whacked out in my head, the data for which came
also from my behind) - linked NEEDS the free members to forward
requests, even though others are paying for that right - turn off the
free requests and the system fails, period."
anybody wanna chime in???
thanks in advance. if you feel like sending a detailed or brief
comment or explanation please just let me know how to credit you...
Principal and Founder, Clew, LLC (http://www.clew.us)
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