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posted by LaminatorX on Sunday March 09 2014, @07:01AM   Printer-friendly
from the weakest-link dept.

regift_of_the_gods writes:

"The makers of Nutshell CRM, a web-based service for managing sales leads and workflow (screenshots here), have notified their customers that they will no longer able to populate profiles with data from Linkedin accounts, after Linkedin informed Nutshell that it was violating the developer API's terms of use over a year and half after Nutshell first announced the feature. It's hard to argue that Nutshell's Linkedin integration feature does not violate the Linkedin Developer API Terms of Service (specifically section C: 'If your application falls into one or more of the following categories, you are required to be part of one of our Partner Programs and have a signed agreement with LinkedIn... applications used for hiring, marketing, or sales...').

However, Nutshell's CEO says Linkedin representatives also informed him they weren't accepting applications for their Partner Program from CRM vendors at this time, leaving Salesforce and Microsoft (Dynamics) as Linkedin's sole partners in that space. Also, the TOS page notes it was last revised in August 2013; it's not immediately clear whether this clause was in place when Nutshell first announced Linkedin integration in May 2012. The CEO of Zartis, which runs a web service for tracking applicants, blogged his layman's interpretation of Linkedin's Developer API TOS sometime in 2013; his post makes no mention of a prohibition for sales or marketing."

Related Stories

LinkedIn Emails Exposed Via Browser Add On 14 comments

The BBC is reporting that the email addresses of LinkedIn users can be exposed via a web browser add on. A LinkedIn spokesman told the BBC "We are doing everything we can to shut Sell Hack down. On 31 March LinkedIn's legal team delivered Sell Hack a cease-and-desist letter as a result of several violations"

NCommander adds: Sell Hack is a plugin for Chrome that allows you to retrieve emails from LinkedIn itself. The article goes on to say that Sell Hack is complying with the cease and desist, but actual details remain somewhat light. If anyone is familiar with the inner works of this plugin, I'll amend this article to include the details.

This isn't LinkedIn's first battle with third party services

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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 09 2014, @07:19AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 09 2014, @07:19AM (#13479)

    If Linkedin wants to limit how their data gets used by other services, more power to them. All it does is lower the profile of their site and curtail the value of their data. Allowing innovative third parties to leverage the data could have led to a lucrative relationship on both sides.

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by jt on Sunday March 09 2014, @11:30AM

      by jt (2890) on Sunday March 09 2014, @11:30AM (#13530)

      It's hard to feel too much sympathy for one profit-making private company who built their business model on an API of another profit-making private company without bothering to read the TOS. Yes, this might have created a mutually beneficial business for both companies, but API or not you still have to make deals in the business world.

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 09 2014, @07:37AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 09 2014, @07:37AM (#13487)

    "However, Nutshell's CEO says Linkedin representatives also informed him they weren't accepting applications for their Partner Program from CRM vendors at this time, leaving Salesforce and Microsoft (Dynamics) as Linkedin's sole partners in that space."

    "But, but, you're not letting us do what we want!" isn't an excuse for doing whatever the hell you want.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 09 2014, @09:24AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 09 2014, @09:24AM (#13511)

      "But, but, you're not letting us do what we want!" isn't an excuse for doing whatever the hell you want.

      I don't think anyone's saying Linkedin can't do this. It's more along the lines of is this a good or bad thing? It makes Linkedin, at least to some people, look like short-sighted dicks.

    • (Score: -1) by MichaelDavidCrawford on Sunday March 09 2014, @10:14AM

      by MichaelDavidCrawford (2339) Subscriber Badge <mdcrawford@gmail.com> on Sunday March 09 2014, @10:14AM (#13518) Homepage Journal

      -rade?

      It's completely cool to be a monopoly provided you do not use your status as a monopoly to violate any laws.

      That is, had Bill Gates &co not been caught red-handed by "$ grep netscape /var/spool/mail/billg" exhorting his colleagues to "cut off their air supply, Judge Jackson could not possibly have ordered Microsoft's breakup.

      That would have actually happened - much as AT&T was broken up into all the Baby Bells, with today's AT&T being one of many telephony providers - had Microsoft not convinced an appellate court that Jackson was biased against him. There would have been, say "Microsoft Windows" to this day, but also "Redmond Office", "Puget Sound XBox One" as well as "Seattle's Best Software" and last but not least "Billy G. and Associates" for Microsoft's consulting division.

      "IFF" - mathematician lingo for "If And Only If" Nutshell sues LinkedIn in Federal Court, and can demonstrate that LinkedIn is a monopoly, then Nutshell could argue that LinkedIn used its monopolistic control of job placement, consulting leads and so on, to force Nutshell out in hopes LinkedIn - NOT Salesforce nor Microsoft - somehow benefiting, say by ceasing the free LinkedIn accounts but forcing all LinkedIn members to pay - one can pay now for increased functionality but it's not actually required.

      Extra credit would be for discovery or deposition to show - under oath that either or both of Salesforce or Microsoft paid LinkedIn to keep their status while at the same time giving Nutshell the boot.

      --
      Yes I Have No Bananas. [gofundme.com]
      • (Score: 2) by Desler on Sunday March 09 2014, @03:34PM

        by Desler (880) on Sunday March 09 2014, @03:34PM (#13571)

        WTF is this stupidity? LinkedIn is not forced to share it's data with everyone. That is not a monopoly.

  • (Score: -1, Offtopic) by MichaelDavidCrawford on Sunday March 09 2014, @07:53AM

    by MichaelDavidCrawford (2339) Subscriber Badge <mdcrawford@gmail.com> on Sunday March 09 2014, @07:53AM (#13492) Homepage Journal

    Microsoft is one of the largest companies on the planet.

    Salesforce is quite large, and a leader in its application area.

    This is the first time in my life I've ever heard of Nutshell CRM.

    I speculate that Microsoft and Salesforce clued in to maybe that Nutshell was better than either Microsoft's or Salesforce's offerings. There are many reasons that could be: maybe LinkedIn's members preferred Nutshell's GUI, mayne Nutshell was better at delivering value to other LinkedIn members, maybe Nutshell had lower overhead, maybe Nutshell, being a small company, could respond quicker to changing customer requirements. Maybe Nutshell is not publicly traded and so could operate at a significant loss for years on end while laying the foundation for its eventual success.

    One of the world's very largest corporations, Bechtel, is privately held. They don't need an IPO and they don't want one.

    Let's say your people just forced your autocratic president out of office in an almost but not quite peaceful protest, but with the puzzling result that your previously peaceful and friendly neighbor just next door scuttled a container ship in the middle of your driveway so you couldn't get to work in the morning.

    1-800-BECHTEL.

    "Bechtel Corporation. How may I direct your call?"

    "Areal Logistics please."

    "Thank you, please hold."

    "Areal Logistics, Joe Stack speaking. How may I help you?"

    "Some manner of former KGB agent is blocking my driveway. Any chance you could airlift an armored division in by next week or so to keep them from breaking into my capital city."

    "No worries. May I put you one hold for five or so?"

    "Great thanks."

    (Ten minutes later.)

    "We're happy to deliver, but it's going to set your taxpayers back ten billion dollars."

    "I'm down with that."

    "What's your fax?"

    "1-800-UKRAINE"

    "Please check your fax twenty minutes or so from now, if your cool with our contract, sign it and fax it back."

    Seven days later, your neighbor to the east hurls a brick through your living room window, only to find a depleted Uranium round has spattered his brains all over the wall.

    Hardly anyone outside of the military the airlines the airplane companies and the like have so much as heard of Bechtel. It's just a construction firm, but they only build really, really big things like military airbases.

    I have a close friend who once worked for a high-end web design consultancy in SFO. That firm made bank throughout the dot-com years because they flatly refused any contract for less than a quarter million.

    I mean like Taco Bell would drop them a dime to ask if they could flog their new Enchirito offering for the next seeks weeks or so, so could this consultancy add Enchiritos to http://www.tacobell.com/ [tacobell.com]

    "No worries. That will be $250,000.00 net thirty."

    "Sure."

    You might think Taco Bell is a lo-budget operation, that is, until you cruise by their corporate headquarters somewhere out in the middle of nowhere between LA and San Diego. You can see that building from the surface of the moon.

    So my friend is now quite prosperous, not as a web designer, but as a consultancy unto his own. He doesn't have any employees, he outsources everything. If Taco Bell asked him for Enchiritos on his home page, Andy would ring up someone like my ex, my ex would snap a digital photo at her local Taco Bell, Yum Foods would cut my friend a check for a quarter million, then my friend would cut my ex a check for fifteen dollars per hour!

    The way my friend got established in this business, was that he would keep track of all the potential clients that his employer turned away as not lucrative enough to accept their work, that is, clients that wanted any less than $250k worth of deliverables.

    He'd cool his heels so as not to arouse suspicion, then cold-call them so as to inquire whether they needed any web design!

    Forgive me if I don't tell you my friend's name or link his site.

    The reason I know all about why Nutshell could in many respects have been far better than either Salesforce or Microsoft, is that I at one time was the coder for a small Mac productivity shop called Working Software in downtown Santa Cruz.

    We were working closely with an Apple Evangelist by the name of Susan Layman. At the time I was happily working for half the pay I knew I could command in the Valley. Working Software's owner, found and President, Dave Johnson, worked for no pay at all.

    I don't know what Sue was paid but I do know that everyone at Apple is paid quite well, with health insurance stock options and the like, a phenomenal lunch room and all, a gym, a childcare center with its own on-site staff nurse and so on.

    So Sue drops by one day and apeshit with envy because my company and Dave's company is so very small.

    "WUT? WHY?"

    "Because you can move so quickly. If you want to introduce a product to market, you can just write it then ship it. You don't need buyoff from anyone."

    Actually we did that all the time at WSI. "Hey Dave! I got a great idea. It would be really easy for me to trivially patch toner tuner to turn it into working watermarker. Are you down with that?"

    We shipped it like a week later, it sold like hotcakes for years on end.

    Apple actually had a direct competitor to both toner tuner and working watermarker. It was called QuickDraw GX, it required revisions of all the client applications, it was a huge PITA to code to its API, it did not work at all well and I would be completely unsurprised were someone to tell me that QuickDraw GX set The Cupertino Fruit Company back a billion samoleons and required five solid years to design, focus group-test, prototype, implement and qualify.

    However, WSI going tits up was in many respects due to Microsoft in particular. I eventually resigned on good terms, then returned a year or two later as a consultant, then ported Spellswell to the BeOS.

    I received a significant royalty for each sale, yet in the five years or so it was on sale, we did not move more than ten copies.

    This because Microsoft was OK with OEMs installing BeOS as a second operating system, but it flatly refused to permit OEMs to ever install a boot menu.

    BeOS and Windows coexist just fine, if one installs either the BeOS boot menu, grub or LILO, but Microsoft knew that BeOS ran just about any application ten times faster than that same application could execute on the same hardware under Windows 98 or Windows 2000.

    Hence no boot menu. BeOS IPOed for sixty million, later declared bankrupcy and sold all its assets to Palm Computing for nine million. For years its be.com domain redirected to beincorporated.com, which had one page of legaleze regarding its bankrupcy.

    Eventually be.com transformed into a "What You Need, When You Need It, Recommended Searches" parking page. Now some unrelated in business in france owns the domain, while Haiku [haiku-os.org], despite not yet having made it to beta, is a BSD licensed clone that uses far more memory, CPU and disk but in other respects puts BeOS 5 Professional completely to shame.

    • (Score: 2, Troll) by Lagg on Sunday March 09 2014, @08:56AM

      by Lagg (105) on Sunday March 09 2014, @08:56AM (#13504) Homepage Journal
      At the risk of being modded offtopic myself: Why do you always seem like you have insightful things to say, sometimes even starting into an interesting point. Then proceed off on a tangent that is only vaguely related to the topic at hand? You don't need to pad your posts in order to make a point you know.
      --
      http://lagg.me [lagg.me] 🗿
      • (Score: -1, Offtopic) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 09 2014, @11:12AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 09 2014, @11:12AM (#13526)

        At the risk of being modded offtopic myself

        You're welcome. When you posted this, this was the highest-score comment for this story, thanks to your karma bonus. Next time, consider using the "No karma bonus" checkbox on the comment form.

        At least I didn't see "I know I will be modded into oblivion for this" (usually with the opposite effect) yet on SoylentNews.

        • (Score: 1, Offtopic) by maxwell demon on Sunday March 09 2014, @07:15PM

          by maxwell demon (1608) Subscriber Badge on Sunday March 09 2014, @07:15PM (#13622) Journal

          At least I didn't see "I know I will be modded into oblivion for this" (usually with the opposite effect) yet on SoylentNews.

          I know I will be modded into oblivion for this, but now you have.

          SCNR :-)

          --
          The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
      • (Score: -1, Offtopic) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 09 2014, @02:50PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 09 2014, @02:50PM (#13566)

        He seems to be one of those guys you used to see on the internet who were at the same time smart and old school bananas.

      • (Score: 1, Offtopic) by FatPhil on Sunday March 09 2014, @07:59PM

        by FatPhil (863) <reversethis-{if.fdsa} {ta} {tnelyos-cp}> on Sunday March 09 2014, @07:59PM (#13627) Homepage
        When replying to that one, please leave some clue for the rest of us that it's him you're replying to. That way those of us who have him safely bozo-ed don't feel tempted to read the parent post. Cheers.
        --
        Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
  • (Score: -1, Offtopic) by MichaelDavidCrawford on Sunday March 09 2014, @09:00AM

    by MichaelDavidCrawford (2339) Subscriber Badge <mdcrawford@gmail.com> on Sunday March 09 2014, @09:00AM (#13505) Homepage Journal

    That press release [warplife.com] pre-announcement in my sig for the last week?

    That's to "Prime the Pump", that is to get some random visitors to my visit press release page so that once I do issue the actual release, there will be some folks who already where it is, it will already have been indexed by Googlebot, Baiduspider and friends.

    I expect to actually issue my press release on the 17th, a week from Monday.

    Would you like to really Fuck Beta?

    If so, you could help out not only myself, but a whole lot of other people who don't like either companies like DICE Holdings [warplife.com], or the kinds of people who are employed by DICE Holdings.

    If you'd like to help out, please use LinkedIn's introduction UI to introduce me to your own LinkedIn connections:

    Just tell them I'm looking either for a perm job as a Process Architect in Portland, Oregon, or as a consulting process architect working remotely for clients anywhere in the world. That's it.

    In reality, I am up to my eyeballs in work right now.

    My objective is to get a lot of headhunters to request connections of me on my own LinkedIn.

    I don't want to be too specific, but the reason I have not got a damn bit of sleep the last three weeks is that I just spent three solid years trying to find any manner of work anywhere, not just in Portland, but also Vancouver, Seattle, San Luis Obispo, Los Angeles, San Diego and Seattle but these days it's damn near impossible to find work in high-tech of any sort without obtaining that work form a headhunter.

    If you were to hire me for a $100K perm job, you'd pay, say, Oxford Global Resources thirty grand if I'm still employed three months after my start date. If I work as an hourly consultant, you'd get thirty percent of my hourly rate the entire time I am, uh, "consulting" for your "client".

    From time to time, headhunter commissions are quite a lot more than the Going Rate of thirty percent, as when some poor fuck on alt.computer.consultants.moderated was quite pleased to be making bank at thirty bucks per hour, only to somehow clue in to that his headhunter's agency was billing the client ninety!

    I know how to make all that go away.

    I don't want to be too specific, until I am past the point of no return. I'll be there around wednesday. I've been doing this all manually, with a great deal of laborious, time consuming tedious effort, but just this morning I figured out a good solution to a significant obstacle in automating it all.

    While not strictly necessary to connect me to your LinkedIn connections, my hope is that if I myself can connect directly to enough headhunters, then I can get tens of thousands of them to submit their two-week notices when I cheerfully, casually and in the most friendly way post a LinkedIn Status Update as to how I'm launching a new service that, for the specific reason that headhunters don't even know what a Process Architect is, nor are they willing to find me work where I want to be, or even work I could hope to qualify for, as a public service to the community, without any monetary charge to anyone, ever, I'm going to make the perceived need for headhunters Just Go Away OVERNIGHT.

    If no one connects to me on LinkedIn, the "Body Shops" will still just go away, but not overnight.

    My hope is to - not really all by myself, but With A Little Help From My Friends cause a measurable drop in the stock prices of DICE Holdings, Kelly Services (the parent of Kelly IT Resources), Manpower (Manpower Professional), On Assignment (Oxford Global Resources) and all the other publicly-traded body shops.

    Thanks a million.

    I just couldn't do it without the kind assistance of my many Soylentil friends.

    --
    Yes I Have No Bananas. [gofundme.com]
  • (Score: 4, Informative) by martyb on Sunday March 09 2014, @01:50PM

    by martyb (76) Subscriber Badge on Sunday March 09 2014, @01:50PM (#13555) Journal

    From the fine summary:

    Also, the TOS page notes it was last revised in August 2013; it's not immediately clear whether this clause was in place when Nutshell first announced Linkedin integration in May 2012.

    For the curious, below are links to the LinkedIn TOS page as it appeared on:

     

    I lack the time at the moment to peruse these; I leave it to other Soylents to do so.

    --
    Wit is intellect, dancing.
    • (Score: 4, Informative) by regift_of_the_gods on Sunday March 09 2014, @02:04PM

      by regift_of_the_gods (138) on Sunday March 09 2014, @02:04PM (#13559)

      Nice catch. I looked through the last one (May 30) and didn't see anything that would prohibit what Nutshell did.

      Of course, even that version of TOS also said that Linkedin retained the right to terminate any user for basically any reason (or no reason), so Nutshell is probably not in a position to sue. But it shows that Nutshell didn't tackle this API with an "easier to ask for forgiveness than permission" attitude. After they took up Linkedin's open offer and did the integration work for their app, Linkedin changed the rules.