A (cynical) look at a world with LinkedIn (by Microsoft)

I have had a really frustrating week with Office365.

As part of Office 2016 – which I have deployed in our business this week – Microsoft have bundled (gee, thanks) in Skype For Business.

  • We don’t use Skype For Business but that doesn’t matter to Microsoft.
  • It interferes with other applications that we use (namely Click To Dial functionality in our Recruitment CRM) but that doesn’t matter to Microsoft.
  • You cannot uninstall Skype For Business without uninstalling Office 2016 but that doesn’t matter to Microsoft.

Microsoft has a habit of forcing users to do things they might not want to do (Windows 10, anyone?). LinkedIn also has a habit of forcing users do to do things they might not want to do (spamming your contacts, anyone?)

So what is a world of LinkedIn (by Microsoft) going to look like? What will we be forced to do? Some predictions. Note that these are completely subjective opinions and certainly not fact.

  • Your Office365 account will link to your LinkedIn account without any choice. Now this raises questions about ownership of LinkedIn profiles if your Office365 account is an organisational one.
  • Your Outlook contacts will lookup and try to match against LinkedIn accounts (like the old Outlook connector).
  • LinkedIn will take these email addresses and probably start spamming them again.
  • Using the LinkedIn API? Not developing in the Microsoft Stack? Bye, bye, API.
  • You will need to have a Microsoft account to sign up for LinkedIn.
    • Now this bit I find REALLY annoying as Microsoft has a terrible way of managing these. You can have both a personal and organisation (work or school) account using the same email address but they are two different accounts. And don’t even start talking about the mess that they made of the Skype sign on system).
  • You will need to use Bing to x-ray search LinkedIn (actually this is probably not going to happen given the amount of organic traffic they would lose).
  • Microsoft will link your job with the activity that you carry out in Word, Excel and Powerpoint.

So the choice will be don’t LinkedIn or be forced into this and much, much more.

P.S – Google – hurry up and buy Twitter, will you? That’s one acquisition I will actually really like.

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