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From Banned to Broken: Losing my LinkedIn Account and the Impact on my Business and Family
UPDATE 30 Mar 2023: LinkedIn has rescinded their decision and apologised to me for restricting and closing my account.
I feel utterly defeated as I sit here, staring at my computer screen. My entire existence, it seems, has crumbled. I have been banned from LinkedIn, the very platform where I have poured countless years and hours into building a community around my passion for agile and Scrum.
Some will think I am just “marketing”, but here you go:
But it's not just about losing my account. It's about what it means for my business and my ability to support my daughter battling stage 4 lymphoma. Recently, she underwent stem cell replacement therapy, akin to having a heart transplant but for one's entire stem cells. It's a gruelling process that takes months to recover from. And now, without LinkedIn, I fear how I can continue to provide for her.
The reason for my ban? Initially, I thought I was hacked. Apparently, I violated the terms of the agreement. Two incidents may have led to this outcome, but LinkedIn will not explain why. The first was that I had been targeted by a stalker, likely a competitor, who would object to any posts I made advertising my services. Nearly every post I make that hints at business gets reported as spam. I don’t know who it is, but it is happening, and I posted about that a few weeks ago. The second was that I got into a debate with someone about GANTT charts, and when they resorted to personal attacks, I eventually snapped and called them a clown.
I regret that moment of weakness. I regret not being able to rise above the toxicity and argumentative behaviour plaguing the Agile community. But what hurts the most is the feeling that I've lost something so important to me. LinkedIn was my way of connecting with like-minded individuals who shared my passion for Agile and Scrum. It was a place where I could freely give of my knowledge and expertise without asking for anything in return.
One of the proudest things I have done was build the Scrum Practitioners group up to over 141000 members with daily active moderation. Each day the group gets dozens of spam attacks where people are promoting things. That is possibly the reason I am being targeted. I am not sure what is going to happen to the group.
Now, that's all gone. And I'm left feeling sad, depressed, and alone. I know that there are other platforms out there, but none of them quite captured the sense of community that LinkedIn did for me. I'm unsure what my next move will be, but I know I can't just give up. I owe it to my daughter, to myself, and to all the people who have supported me over the years to keep going.
I may have lost my LinkedIn account, but I haven't lost my passion for Agile and Scrum. And I know that, somehow, I'll find a way to keep sharing that passion with others.
Finally, don’t fall into the same trap as I did and take my advice, don’t debate, correct or argue with anyone on LinkedIn; just block them!
"So long and thanks for all the fish."
Looks like this is my new home. If I have given you any value over the years, I ask you to please subscribe. 😭
If you want to connect with me, you can mail me at email@example.com
Please share this post on LinkedIn so my large community knows this. We are likely to have many shared connections.