LinkedIn URL Shortening Changes

It looks as though LinkedIn has made some changes to the way it garbles your URLs now.

Prior to today, when you enter a URL as part of an update to share, LinkedIn posting functionality kept the original URL human-readable and intact while changing the link to use the lnkd.in shortener as the clickable link for the viewer. The justification to force these modifications originally was the same rationale Twitter used when it mandated links go through their URL shortener: safety. They are able to pick-off “harmful” site links for users through the secondary path and help people. Of course, the side-effect is being in a position to get stats and track activity on the links since the traffic goes through the modified URL prior to the destination intended by the original poster.

But, this change is different. This actually modifies your shared post content. It doesn’t just wrap the link. Here is an example. I post a link to a full URL.

beforeLinkedInGarble
And when you post it via share, the past functionality would keep the text of your post (and full URL) human-readable while wrapping the actual link in a lnkd.in link wrapper. But as of today, you get this. It garbles it to the lnkd.in link rather than leaving it alone to read.

after-linkedingarble
It modifies the text of your shared post now.

So, it looks like they have changed the functionality now to shrink and re-brand the link if it hits a certain length. Odd. I’m sure they want the analytics around the traffic and their link to propagate to other social media services, but, as a user and poster, this is not the kind of behavior I would want.

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