In what must be a first for social media, a platform has purposefully disabled the utility of a share counter.
Nearly every platform I know, offers website owners and bloggers a plugin to share their posts and glimpse how many times those shares have been made. It’s useful to see what’s being written is being received.
By sharing content as such, authors also benefit from a wider audience and social media platforms gain more attention through time on screen meaning greater opportunities to hawk their own wares.
At present, WordPress dot com provides plugins for: Facebook, Reddit, Twitter, Pinterest, Pocket, WhatsApp, Passport, Skype, Google+, Tumblr, WordPress itself and LinkedIn.
LinkedIn’s plugin is called inShare.
It’s now the only plugin that deliberately, no longer shows the number of shares made.
As LinkedIn wrote in its February 7, 2018, Developer’s update:
The Share on LinkedIn plugin, also known as the inShare plugin, will no longer display the counter that shows the number of shares. This change removes the displayed share count, and the underlying data. … Why this deprecation? The share count on its own doesn’t fully reflect the impact that a piece of content delivers, and we encourage publishers and other content creators to leverage the inShare plugin as a way to drive conversation and engage with members on LinkedIn.
There is no logic to this degradation. Unless LinkedIn is so insecure about its purpose, that it needs users to post directly to it. That’s what I think is at work here (I’ve asked for a comment and received no reply) and if so, LinkedIn has no idea what social media is.
Like most social media platforms, LinkedIn is starved for profits. Few platforms ever break-even. Until the advent of The Donald, Twitter was on the verge of collapse. Users are likewise abandoning Facebook; Tumblr is is trouble, Snapchat the same. The list goes on. As I’ve written many times, social media is not social at all.
When you look at it, LinkedIn is really an online Rolodex. To supplement its existence, it tries to offer news with Influencers in tow. (Oh, how nonsensical I find that term.)
In a nutshell, while it’s around, you my readers will always be welcome to share my content on LinkedIn if that’s where you’d like to be. The icon still works. Honestly, as far as LinkedIn is concerned, the more truly original the content, the better it is for them.
But there’s no way I’ll succumb to a substandard writing medium like LinkedIn’s own blogging tool, when WordPress carries all the goods I need.
LinkedIn will just have to accept that our websites show better curation and care.
Unfortunately, for the moment, LinkedIn is lost. That’s the story of social media right now and till users truly abandon it, I hope the platform changes its approach.
© 2018 Adam Parker.