LinkedIn shadow ban

LinkedIn Shadowban – Everything You Need To Know

Written By Dzenana Vanessa van Fleet
November 9, 2020

If you’ve come across the term ‘shadowban‘ and are asking yourself questions like What is shadowbanning? Am I shadowbanned? or How to get unshadowbanned? stay with us!

This article has answers to all of your questions regarding the elusive LinkedIn Shadowban!

LinkedIn is a famous social media platform for professionals.

When it comes to networking, LinkedIn is one of the best platforms to use since it has more than 260 million active users a month with an average of twenty million job postings every year. In short, LinkedIn is a networking asset. 

Nonetheless, most people find this platform overwhelming. And this makes it difficult for them to succeed when using it.

While LinkedIn can help you get your next job and help you promote yourself, it can limit your growth if you fail to follow its rules.

This is popularly known as a LinkedIn shadowban.

LinkedIn statistics users locations
Image by: Kinsta






What is a shadowban?

Have you noticed a decline in engagement levels all of a sudden? A sudden loss of followers that have dropped like flies?

If yes, you are probably a victim of the type of banning on social media that most people dread. The infamous shadowban!

Users fall victim to shadowban across major social media platforms such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook.

If this has happened to you, you probably already know what shadowban means.

You’ll see and feel it in all types of content that you publish and the engagement you try to achieve on your social media.  

Infographic representation of experiencing shadowban on social media.
Image by Cocosolution

What does shadowban mean? 

What does shadowban mean and why it happens? It’s a big thing at the moment and most people have been affected by it on one social media platform or another. 

According to Nathan Chandler at Howstuffworks.com, this social ghosting is all about blocking a user or specific content from an online group in such a way that the user doesn’t realize that he or she has been banned.

Since we are all aware of the importance of social media for businesses in the modern world, a shadowban on any social media, and LinkedIn in particular, can be detrimental to your:

  • Online presence
  • Engagement
  • Connections
  • Possible sales  

The worst thing about LinkedIn shadowbanning is that you might not know it has happened to you and, as a result, you might start believing that you are a good social media poster who is abiding by the rules and trying to grow.

It’s called ‘shadowbanning’ because it all happens in secret.

Is there such a thing as a shadowban on LinkedIn?

If we ask Prominence Global, shadowban is a tool that social media platforms use to avoid spamming. And this is a great thing.

On LinkedIn, it is mostly used to:

  • Prevent spammers
  • Clean up feeds
  • Keep customers and users happy

Every social media platform has its own elements and ideas of what should be included as part of a shadowban or, as it is also known, social media prison

However, it’s usually a gentle approach that is supposed to be warning you if you aren’t following the rules, rather than outright ban all your content completely.

Unlike other social media platforms, LinkedIn and Facebook have been open with what they ban. Shadowban on these channels usually occurs if you’ve been sending spam messages to a lot of people or liking a lot of accounts. 

The sad thing is that you won’t know you’ve been banned, especially if you don’t have any idea of what all this banning business is about and you are reading about it for the first time now.

You’ll keep writing articles and posting until you notice that your comments, likes, and shares have gone down and you are not getting more followers. 

In most cases, the LinkedIn shadowban is usually a temporary thing. You’ll become invisible to your followers and prospects for some time, especially in the feeds.

Still, in case you are uncertain whether you have been shadowbanned from LinkedIn or not, you can do a shadowban check. These simple steps will help you understand where you have made the mistakes and prevent them from happening in the future!

Infographic of a person experiencing a shadowban on his social media channels.
Image by Onlypult

Learn more about becoming legitimate on social media by checking out How to Become Youtube Certified here


Why do people get a shadowban on LinkedIn?

Anyone can get thrown into LinkedIn Prison. In most cases, it happens when you don’t abide by the terms and conditions of the social media platform in question.

Sometimes, it can even happen to you even if you’re following all the rules. More likely, the shadowban will happen if you’ve been abusing the platform. 

It’s important to keep in mind that it does not happen deliberately on social media platforms to prevent your posts from being seen and read. It’s not a personal thing. 

It is a tool that is used to ensure that users get the best experience by receiving only high-quality content. If it has happened to you, don’t take it personally. It’s a simple mistake that can be rectified.

You should make sure to conduct a shadowban check if your engagement levels are dropping and you have not been getting comments, likes, shares, or new followers as much as you used to.

How to determine if you are experiencing a shadowban?

Besides a shadowban checker, there are some other ways to check whether your account is under a shadowban.

One of the best ways to find out if you’ve been temporarily suspended is by asking people who don’t follow you to search and see if they can find your profile and posts.

If they are unable to find your account, we are sad to inform you, but most likely, you’ve been put in prison.

If you are not sure what you have done wrong check whether recently you have been:

  • Using an automated app or bot to post content
  • Buying followers
  • Using banned hashtags

Let’s have a closer look at these three social media offenses. 

Using an automated app or bot to post content

Automated tools and bots that help uses post content are not acceptable on most online platforms today.

Social media platforms are doing their best to ensure that users get high-quality content on their feeds all the time.

And they do this by ensuring that their platforms are less spammy by limiting automated posts. 

How does LinkedIn Big Brother know if you’ve used an automated app to post?

It’s all in your IP address. If you publish posts from different IP addresses at the same time, content managers at LinkedIn will start investigating.

As a result, you might get a shadowban on LinkedIn for a little while. Therefore, try to avoid using an automated app or, at least, use it only when truly necessary.

Buying followers

Most online users today understand that buying followers is one of the worst ways to make progress and increase engagement.

When it comes to social media, the focus should be on quality, not quantity.

If you are using this tactic to get ahead, you should stop doing it now. It’s an ineffective method that will result in a LinkedIn shadowban.

You need to take the time to build a genuine audience that will find your work interesting and will engage with it.

Luckily, there are various marketing methods that will help you increase your following organically. Do your research and choose the one that fits your business model the best.

Infographic of a person collecting likes with a net.
Image by Brandmentions

Beware of your hashtag use

It is super important to make sure your hashtag use is authentic. You’ve probably seen posts with lots of long hashtags.

And in most cases, these hashtags have little to do with the content. 

The hashtags will make your post show up in lots of searches and increase traffic for your site. However, they won’t help in defining content in a meaningful way. 

First of all, putting in the same 30 hashtags on every single post (and comment) will make you seem less authentic and less like an actual person, as this is a bot-like behavior. So, beware of just reusing the same hashtags again and again. 

You should also keep in mind that banned hashtags exist.

If you just drown each of your posts in hashtags, there is a bigger chance of you accidentally using a banned hashtag, which could get you ghosted from LinkedIn.

Are LinkedIn engagement pods safe to use?

When used in the right way, LinkedIn pods can help you improve your brand’s visibility and access to your posts.

LinkedIn engagements pods are privately created groups where people engage with each other and help each other increase likes, comments, and shares. This way, there is a higher likelihood of beating the algorithm and “organically” increasing your content’s visibility.

However, there are a lot of points that you should keep in mind in order to use this method safely.

Engagement pods whose safety is high are not easy for the LinkedIn algorithm and other people within your network to find. When you understand this, you greatly increase your chances of success.

How do LinkedIn algorithms work?

Algorithms are developed to look for patterns in large amounts of information. LinkedIn uses a wide range of algorithms to enhance and regulate the experience of its users.

A great user experience makes users want to stay a little bit longer on the platform. And this allows LinkedIn to sell more advertisements. 

When the user experience goes down, users reduce the time they spend on the platform and LinkedIn fails to generate enough revenue from selling ads.

Therefore, the LinkedIn algorithm tries to eliminate or shadowban behaviors that kill user experiences like fake accounts and spam

The final verdict? LinkedIn engagement pods are safe for now, however, you should not be overusing them since they may decrease the credibility of your posts. It is always the best practice to encourage genuine engagement and work on organic leads.

Now let’s go on and check what kind of activities LinkedIn algorithms detect and that can lead to a shadowban!

Infographic of four people sitting around the desk and giving each other likes on social media.
Image by Present Slide

Repetitive and predictable patterns  

One of the easiest ways for the algorithm to detect you is by having repetitive and predictable activities on your social media platform.

When the LinkedIn’s algorithm detects you, your post’s reach will automatically reduce or it will be flagged for a moderator to review the infraction manually.

Being detected by the platform’s algorithm will affect all those engaging in the pod. 

It’s important to be cautious when using these tools. You can easily avoid this problem by understanding the patterns of engagement pods.

Engagement pod patterns are just like the virtual footprints we leave behind every time we engage with content. If you are in an engagement pod that consistently conducts the same activity, the chances of LinkedIn algorithm detecting the pattern is much higher.

And there are some pods that don’t randomize the engagement order which leaves a predictable pattern in a similar order. Hence, the risk of a shadowban gets very high.

So, if you are opting for an engagement pod, make sure to choose one that is working hard on breaking the patterns, which will increase the success rates of your content.

A metaphorical representation of breaking a pattern and avoiding a shadowban.
Image by VoloHaus

On the final note!

One of the best rules to keep in mind: anything that happens more than three times and yields the same answer is not a coincidence but a pattern.

You need to minimize the algorithm footprints that you leave behind to get the results that you want.

What risky engagement pod behavior should you avoid?

So far, we have determined that repetitive activities on LinkedIn engagement pods create a pattern that may lead to something we all are trying hard to avoid – a shadowban.

However, there are other types of behavior LinkedIn users should refrain from in order to maintain their social media freedom. Let’s check them out!

  • Old posts with low engagement levels that get a boost all of a sudden may alarm LinkedIn about unusual behavior.
  • Posts getting boosted by people who are not following the company or are not connected don’t look like natural and organic activiites.
  • Boosting other posts outside the pod
  • Adding multiple URLs to a pod all of a sudden which leads to the same people engaging in your posts creates an obvious pattern.

All of the abovementioned activities may result in LinkedIn engagement pods turning out to be a liability and it’s members falling victims to a shadowban for a while.


Check out our post on and learn more about 32 Best LinkedIn Automation Tools


How to avoid a shadowban on LinkedIn?

Finally, we have come to a part you must be dying to learn about! What are some of the best ways to avoid a shadowban on LinkedIn?

You can easily avoid a shadowban by avoiding some of the things that lead to it in the first place, some of which we have mentioned already (but let’s keep them here since they are of the utmost importance): 

  • Overusing hashtags or using broken or forbidden hashtags
  • Using bots and automated tools for posting content
  • Buying followers 
  • Sending spam messages 
  • Conducting the same type of activity many times in a short period
  • Copy/pasting the same type of copy into comments or messages

It is fine to push boundaries a bit, but you need to be careful about what you do if you don’t want to get in trouble with LinkedIn.



Extra tips to avoid a shadowban!

If you thought we were done helping you out, well, we are not! We have some more aces up our sleeve that will secure you stay out of the shadowban zone and still experience success on your LinkedIn account. Here they are:

  • Connecting with pod members as early as you can – every time you join a new pod, remember to connect with its members.
  • Add a single URL at a time – Instead of cramming several URLs in the queue at a go, you should add one every few hours.
  • Smaller pods can be used more than twice during the day – however, this doesn’t apply to larger pods. Always follow the pod posting rules to avoid inconveniences in the long run. 
  • Remember to avoid predictability at all costs.  

Check out the video below for more on LinkedIn shadowban and how to get out of it.

How to get out of a shadowban?          

Ups, if you are curious to read about getting out of a shadowban that must mean you have broken some LinkedIn rules! No worries, it may happen even to the most rule-abiding ones.

In case you are not sure what you have done wrong, you can always look at LinkedIn terms and conditions and check the possible reasons why you are under a shadowban.

However, if you know where you have misbehaved, here are some ways to soften LinkedIn officials’ hearts and, hopefully, get out of a shadowban faster!

  • Delete any apps that may not comply with LinkedIn’s terms and conditions
  • Refrain from using automation tools, bots, or engagement pods
  • Check what hashtags have been forbidden and ensure you are not using them anymore
  • Reach out to LinkedIn support
  • Don’t use the platfor for a few days
Escaping LinkedIn shadowban
Image by EFF

Shadowban has been lifted. What’s next?

Once your shadowban has been lifted, you shouldn’t rush and keep on going with your old habits. What you need to do is follow certain steps that will show LinkedIn you’ve learned your lesson and are abiding by all the rules.

Here are some tips to bring back your LinkedIn presence:

  • Start slow and warm-upWarm-up your account by gradually increasing how much you do every day and allow it to get accustomed to higher levels of activity until you can do more.
  • Spread your activities – If you want to get your work done, you should do it in small batches and spread the activities throughout the day. You can easily do this by defining the number of activities you want to perform and then scheduling launches at set intervals.
  • Rate limits – There’s a limit to the number of activities you can perform in a certain period before the algorithm detects suspicious activities on your account and blocks your actions. Make sure to comply to the rate limits.
  • The use of multiple phantoms – If you are using a wide range of phantoms to do different things with the same social media account on a given day, ensure that not all of them are running at once.
  • ProxyDifferent phantoms run from different IP addresses with several locations. Therefore, if you are using different phantoms on the same social network, it might make the system think that you are in more than one place at the same time. If this is the case,try localizing your actions every time.

Conclusion

If you’ve experienced a shadoban on LinkedIn, don’t be devastated. It can happen to anyone.

Remember, algorithms are always keeping tabs on your activities to reduce spam and improve user experience.

When the algorithm takes note of suspicious behavior, it flags your account. To solve this problem, you’ll need to communicate with support. 

All social media platforms including LinkedIn shadowban users who don’t follow the rules.

You can avoid a shadowban by reading the terms and conditions, testing your hashtags, posting high-quality content, and gradually automating your processes.

Every platform has unique elements of what behavior is accepted or should be avoided. It is a soft approach that is meant to warn you especially when you’re not following the rules. 

Most platforms including LinkedIn do not ban you completely. Instead, they limit you for a certain period of time.

You can get a shadowban if you send too many spammy messages, use lots of irrelevant hashtags or upload content using automated apps or bots.

Luckily, now you know what the dos and don’ts on LinkedIn are and you can safely keep on networking on this amazing social media platform without ever again worrying about a shadowban!

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