Todd Gravseth - Lying LION of LinkedIn

1) What is a LinkedIn LION?

A LION is a LinkedIn Open Networker.  These are people who are usually willing to use LinkedIn to connect with anyone.  However, even if they don't want to connect with someone, they at least agree not to IDK them, i.e., they agree not to say "I Don't Know"in response to an invitation from someone.

This is important, because if LinkedIn see that 5 people have said "I Don't Know" to your invitations, you are "blacklisted", and must now know someone's email address in order to invite them.  There are ways around this, but it makes things much more difficult, especially if you are trying to connect with people like college or high school friends who you know by name but not by email address.

2) Why would a LION IDK someone?

Here is one explanation, which is a sinister and deceptive use of the system.  Some recruiters and HR people want to limit the ability of others to connect with people, since they believe that their financial future is dependent on

  • their ability to maintain exclusive connections with people
  • their ability to control the connections of others

Historically, this has been the key to their business, and LinkedIn is certainly a threat to them.  Therefore, if they advertise themselves as LIONs, then refuse the connection requests that they receive, more people will be blacklisted, and more people will have limited connections.

3) How do they get away with it?

Most people don't monitor their "Sent" invitations from LinkedIn, and if you don't check them, you would never know.

I sent an invitation to Todd Gravseth, who actually uses "Todd Gravseth (LION)" as his name in LinkedIn.  He IDKed me, so now I have fewer IDKs left before I am blacklisted.  Therefore, he earns the title "The Lyin Lion".


todd gravseth



To find out if someone has IDK'ed you,

  • look at your profile
  • expand Inbox on the left
  • click on Invitations
  • look at Sent invitations
  • sort them in order by Status
  • look for Statuses that say "I Don't Know" in a reddish color