Is LinkedIn removing links from your posts? Do this.

It’s not your imagination and it’s not a bug—LinkedIn is removing hyperlinks from your comments. The change came to mobile and is rolling out to desktop. Although this seems to be hit or miss (hyperlink comments are presently working for me), this might be an alarming new direction. LinkedIn removing links from your comments is annoying, but there is a workaround (for now) if you’re experiencing it. Skip to that part »

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It should be obvious LinkedIn‘s goal is to gain users and keep them on the platform. It makes sense why they would limit the number of exit opportunities from their platform. It may not make logical sense to you, but LinkedIn removing links to your posts is apparently the path they’ve chosen to accomplish this goal.

Screen cap of LinkedIn's external link warning that states: You’re leaving LinkedIn: If you trust this link, select it to continue.
LinkedIn’s external link warning.

Based on my testing, LinkedIn began removing the hyperlink action from comments in their mobile app early March of 2022. In some cases, they have also disabled the ability to copy/paste the link into your mobile browser. Hyperlinked comments still work on desktop (for now), but sources within the company have told me they’re removing desktop links by the end of 2022.

In some cases, LinkedIn will also hijack links with a warning that states, “You’re leaving LinkedIn: If you trust this link, select it to continue.”

While I’m sure LinkedIn will claim this is for your safety, in reality, it’s an effective scare tactic to keep you on their platform. These aggressive moves could indicate their next step will be to launch premium plans or “boost” paid plans similar to Facebook and Twitter.

What’s with the “link in comments” strategy?

You’ve probably noticed your LinkedIn friends posting long-form content, adding “link in comments” at the end, right? Many of these folks are the platform’s content drivers and power users. They know LinkedIn penalizes posts with links outside the platform, therefore, they move those links into the comment section to preserve reach. But now LinkedIn is cracking down.

LinkedIn removing links is likely targeted at these users. They’ve invested a lot into the platform, and they’ve built an audience, so perhaps LinkedIn suspects these users will be most likely to pay advertising dollars to continue reaching their audience.

Facebook took a similar approach many years ago. After users signed up for company pages and attracted hundreds of thousands of users, Facebook throttled these pages’ reach, asking them to pay to reach their own audience. In a way, Facebook effectively held page owners’ own audiences hostage. A brand I was working with actually lost engagement and reach the week they crossed 10,000 likes on Facebook. With LinkedIn removing links in comments, are they going down the same path?

Workaround for LinkedIn removing hyperlinks

Removing all hyperlinks in the comment section would be problematic, so LinkedIn seems to be tweaking its approach. Perhaps for this reason, LinkedIn allows links in specific scenarios. For example, they often strip 1st comments but allow a second attempt. To get around LinkedIn removing links in your comments, this workaround seems to be best.

How to post links in LinkedIn comments:

  • Step 1: Using the LinkedIn App on your phone, post a comment with your link. LinkedIn will strip the hyperlink from your comment (Go ahead and curse their name, it’s ok).
  • Step 2: Using the app, post a second time, adding more than just a link. “Check it out” seems to suffice. But don’t post yet.
  • Step 3: Before posting, hit space after your link and allow a few seconds to see if a preview image populates. If a preview is generated, the link should “stick” when posted.
  • Step 4: Post and verify.
  • Step 5: If this fails, repeat until it works. Sometimes it can take 5 or more tries (seriously).

Please note, this workaround only works using the LinkedIn app. Although I’ve received no confirmation on why this works, I’d guess it’s a matter of time before LinkedIn cracks down on this workaround. Make sure you subscribe to my newsletter below and let me know if this process is successful for you. I’ll push out an update if this workaround changes.

Will this kill LinkedIn’s user growth?

When Facebook made this same change years ago, I simply erased my account. Knowing Facebook would simply move the goalposts if I achieved a larger reach, they removed my incentive to be active on the platform. Numbers have been declining ever since, with Facebook actually losing users for the first time last year.

Will that be the case with LinkedIn? It’s too early to know if their actions will hurt. Social media companies face a delicate balance between keeping their product free while increasing revenue for shareholders. If they see an activity drop resulting from this change, I’d guess they reconsider the change.

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