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May 19, 2009

21 rapid comments and the curse of diverted attention.

I was recently expelled from a popular forum here on LinkedIn. I posted several articles there, and one of them I wrote about cold calling  received something like 21 comments in the space of a few hours.

Phenomenal response, one of the more aggressive responses I have had on a Linkedin news group. And enough to upset the moderator. He deleted it, and chipped me about posting news items, I reposted it, and he then deleted me.

End of story.. except, theres another story here.

The article, as you can see , is non commercial. I don't sell anything here at present and the only thing that may happen is someone clicks on an Adsense banner. Given that I have earned enough for a couple of cups of coffee from Adsense I don't really call it a commercial concern.

The underlying theme in the post was - "here, try this - I hope it helps".

The crime was diverting attention away from the groups moderator. Instead of being able to dominate the group as an absolute sales authority, attention was being drawn away and it wasn't appreciated.

In the Consulting Pulse network  we have a few rules to try to keep out the spammers, but generally speaking we encourage others to bask in the spotlight of the groups interest.

In fact - I have placed RSS feeds like Seth's blog, Dan Roams blog, Topix on Consulting, Bill Caskey's blog and numerous others in there to make sure that we get a range of diverse opinions and viewpoints through the forum.

And I believe it is a vastly better network for it. The news items are always interesting as they are drawn from blogs that are already super successful. And the discussion and job boards are wide open for people to try to get advice, information and support from others in the consulting game.

We could have closed it down. Stopped discussions altogether and just used it as a place we used to capture email addresses. We could use it as a place to blast everyone with news about stuff we are doing. But instead we are trying to use it as a place where the focus can be on others, and as a safe haven for consultants where they won't be pitched to.

As we round 3,000 it seems to be picking up pace - so i am pretty confident that it is working.

Time will tell... your thoughts?

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Should LinkedIn group owners be allowed to download your email address?