How To Stop LinkedIn From Publicly Celebrating Your Misfortune

By | July 7, 2014

Woman embarrassed with LinkedIn logo overlay
In a world where we’re connected and everything that is ever published on the internet has the potential to haunt us down the road, there is a time and place for stealth….

...and I suggest that time and place is right here and now.

You can call me crazy, but there are some times in our life where it’s best to not broadcast our affairs to casual acquaintances as well as current and/or former employers and coworkers.

There’s a lot to be said for having a relative amount of privacy in a world that is increasingly monitored, documented and etched into the world wide web for months or years to come.

Here’s one such example that I witnessed as a bystander on LinkedIn recently:

An acquaintance of mine lost his job due to a reorganization/reshuffling that caught him off guard.

Now this is never fun, but to add insult to injury look at what happened when he updated his job status on LinkedIn (momentarily forgetting that everyone in his network would see it).

It's awkward being congratulated for losing your job
I count at least 4 people who “congratulated” Chris on having lost his job with several more “thumbs up” added for good measure - talk about throwing salt on the wound! (Turns out this is an increasingly common occurrence on LinkedIn these days)

Sure, on the bright side there were two people who are attempting to help Chris find something new, but personally...I’d rather avoid this situation from the beginning and not broadcast my job loss all over LinkedIn.

Enter Simple LinkedIn Steath Tactic

You see, the problem as Chris points out in his response above is that LinkedIn assumes that when you update your job status it’s for a good reason:

  • you were promoted
  • you started a new job - these are reasons for celebration!

However, the other reason people change job statuses is when there’s a termination, a layoff or a reorganization, definitely not the time for a pat on the back.

But guess what? You don’t have to tell the whole world when you update your job status anymore.

Thankfully, LinkedIn offers the option to turn this feature off... but you have to go looking for it.

How To Deactivate Notifications in LinkedIn

Here’s how to deactivate those pesky notifications:

    1. Login to LinkedIn
    2. Click “Profile”
    3. Click “Edit Profile”
    4. In the left sidebar look for “Notify Your Network?”
    5. Select “No, do not publish an update to my network…” from the drop down.

turn off linkedin notifications

  1. Click “Done editing”

Now if you’re the type of person who just can’t stand the thought of not being personally congratulated by your LinkedIn network every time you hit a work anniversary or get a promotion, then go ahead and turn the notifications back on again.

But anytime you have reason for stealth, you can now disable these notifications and update your profile without broadcasting what’s going on to every last one of your contacts.

Not only will this spare you the embarrassment of being congratulated should you actually lose your job, but it will also come in handy should you be looking for new work opportunities and count your current employer and co-workers among your LinkedIn contacts.

You can have the best of both worlds, with notifications disabled you’re now free to seek greener pastures without announcing it to the whole world at the same time.

Now this won’t save you if your employer makes a regular habit of snooping your LinkedIn profile (which probably happens more than you might think), but it’s still better than broadcasting your notifications any single time you make the slightest update to your profile.

So go ahead and disable those notifications right now while you’re thinking about it. You can thank me later.

Image Credit (modified)

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