Linkedin is nothing like other social media. It is addressing the needs of professionals and businesses for networking and contacts. It is not a tool for enhancing your personal relationships, as it happens with facebook and even twitter. As a business consultant I use it regularly to keep up with the professionals I know, follow their progress, keep in touch, announce my work-related ventures etc.
Nevertheless, many people do not realise that Linkedin is bound by a different set of rules. Unlike other social platforms, you cannot invite just anyone you want to connect with you. Well, technically you can but, if they decline or complain, you risk been banned from Linkedin altogether.
For some reason, trying to connect with people you have never met is considered equal to spamming. The reason may be that Linkedin keeps the number of contacts limited or the fact that in our professional lives we need to be a lot more careful about what we say and how we act. Either way, inappropriate behaviour is punished with exclusion.
I decided not to test the flexibility of this rule. Linkedin is too important for my business and I would not like to take any unnecessary risks. Would you?