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Beantin Beta Blog

Experiments, investigations, and tests of web things
November 30, 2010

LinkedIn’s share button tested

Today LinkedIn launched their own share button in the vein as Twitter, Facebook, Google Buzz, Digg, and numerous other services have done previously.

It’s available in three different styles – the classic “Twitter” look, with a number and “share” below, a more compact horizontal version, and then a simple version with no total. You can also customise the shared link, but the default is the page you are sharing from.

Just like all of these solutions, it’s very simple to get up and running – you only need to embed a link to a javascript file to make it work. Today it wasn’t responding very fast, the Tweetmeme button and Facebook button on my test page consistently loaded faster (around 150ms slower than Tweetmeme on most occasions).

I like the fact that LinkedIn have launched this feature, certain corporate/business websites might have some good use for this. But there are a number of drawbacks.

No Zero total

LinkedIn share button

For pages that haven’t been shared, rather than a zero, a LinkedIn logo appears – creating an ugly “double logo”.

No recognition of already shared links

It only seems to be recognising links that have been shared via the share button itself, or full links shared within Linkedin. There is no acknowledgement of links shortened with a URL shortening service (such as bit.ly, or your own hosted YOURLS shortner like I have).

No historical data

Also, as far as I can tell, the share total doesn’t take into account any times that the page may have been shared prior to when they launched today. I will admit that this hasn’t been so easy to test properly.

To test it you need to know of a page that has been shared before today on LinkedIn and is displaying the new share button. The main Beantin Blog would have been a perfect test, if it wasn’t for the problem with recognising shortened URLs.

Hopefully some of the problems above will be corrected soon – especially the speed issues and the ugly “double logo” for non-shared pages – until then, I’d recommend you wait a little while before implementing the button on your site.

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